John 4:34 – Jesus said to them, “My food is to do the will of him who sent me and accomplish His work.”
Before Jesus spoke these words to His disciples, He had just witnessed to the woman at the well telling her everything she had done (John 4: 7 – 29). She had come face to face with the Messiah and ran into town telling everyone she could find about her remarkable and life altering encounter with Jesus! His disciples then approached Him and we’re urging Him: ”Rabbi eat”. They were concerned about their Master’s well-being and comfort. But, as stated above, Jesus had more pressing concerns on his mind. He was on a mission. His father’s mission.
What might God be calling you to do? Is it something you are ready to roll up your sleeves and take on? Or are doubt and uncertainty shrouding your commitment? It could take on a challenging ministry. It could be giving up a leadership position to someone else God is calling to replace you. It could involve going to that person to whom God has been urging you to extend your apology, or your forgiveness.
Last April, I turned 80 years old. I was feeling great on every level – spiritually, emotionally and physically. I literally fell on top of the world – had more energy than I had felt in years. And centered around the wonderful things God had led me to do in recent times: leading and facilitating a Bible study, a longtime dream; Being more active in the life of the church members, encouraging them in your faith, sharing my own, and offering prayer for with them. These were huge steps for me. And, of course prison ministry which changed my life on many levels.
Well I have recently been experiencing challenges I have never before had to deal with. I won’t go into the details but I have not felt strong and energetic or joyful and full of passion for the Lord. I had been feeling sorry for myself and frankly, uncertain of my future ability to continue this dynamic life of serving Jesus in new and exciting ways. Instead, I have been scared of what might be ahead, upsetting my husband (who is a saint). With a combination of fear one minute, and anger the next, at the possibility I could no longer be able to do what I felt he was calling me to do.
I was reading a newly discovered devotional by Christine Caine entitled – “Unshakable” finding strength in God’s word. I came across a morning reading and a scripture that left off the page at me: Jesus went a little farther and fell on his face, and prayed, saying “ Oh my father if it is possible let this cup pass from me; Nevertheless, not as I will but as your will.” (Matthew 26: 39). Now, of course, no one among us will ever be facing the situation of our Savior did as he contemplated the pain, horror and sacrificed that awaited him on Calvary. But the point is clear. As disciples of Christ, we are to submit our will, our fears, and our broken hopes and expectations to the one we owe everything.
So…….. I arose one morning. Knowing I needed to make some changes. “Jesus, I humbly ask your forgiveness for my faithless and self-centered behavior. I have not trusted you. I have allowed the father of lies to succeed me. I know you are sovereign and in control of my life dash all facets of it dash the mountaintops and the valleys. I chose to stand on your promise that “all things work together for good to those who are called according to his purpose.” (Romans 8: 28).
He has led me to wonderful doctors who are helping me feel better. I have faced the reality that there will be some joyful and energetic days, as well as slower moving and more challenging days. There will be setbacks. Such as life here in this world. But I now have a new mindset.
Psalm 31: 14- 15: But I trust in You, O Lord. I say, you are my God. My times are in your hands.”
What is your nevertheless? May it alter the course of your life and return you to faith and trust in the one who says, to each of us who have been chosen by Him:
“Fear not for I have redeemed you. I have called you by name and you are mine.” (Isaiah 43:1)