Short term gain vs eternal blessing

“In the land of Uz there lived a man whose name was Job. This man was blameless and upright; he feared God and shunned evil.”
Job 1:1 NIVUK

There is an intentionality behind Job’s actions. He chose to fear God. He chose to shun evil. This makes him blameless and upright.

Every day we have a choice. We can choose to follow God’s commands or submit to the tyranny of evil’s urgency. Either choice has both immediate and eternal consequences. Often the outcomes of evil’s choices are attractive because they almost always satisfies an immediate desire. However, their long term consequences are rather depressing. Living for God often implies denying immediate desire but the long term consequences are euphorically rewarding.

What will you and I choose today? May the Holy Spirit enable us to have a proper perspective on our eternal destiny so that we will be inspired to fear God and shun evil.

The call to excellence

Subtitle: the eternal purpose of work

“Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving.” – Colossians‬ ‭3:23-24‬ ‭NIVUK‬‬.

To be honest, humanly speaking, I would have preferred for these verses not to be in the Bible. If there ever was a call to be excellent in everything you do, this is it … as Christian I never have an an excuse for doing shoddy work or to be lazy (as Solomon already pointed out centuries before in Proverbs and Ecclesiastes) …

Thanks be to God that I did not determine what is written in the Bible! Every word in Scripture has a place and purpose. God knew we would need these words of encouragement to inspire us to always do our best when we don’t feel like it.

What makes the encouragement even more powerful, is that it is wrapped up with purpose. Whatever we do here on Earth, is given purpose. We are serving Christ as an expression of gratitude for the inheritance we will receive from Him. Thank you Lord for giving my work eternal purpose!

Genesis 43

I don’t know about you but I cannot wait to read the next chapter. It is so exciting . . . perhaps it is because I know how the story will end . . . 🙂

There are probably many comments one can make about this chapter. What struck me this time were two things: Joseph’s brothers were still not taking responsibility for what they had done to him, and as a consequence they were in a very difficult situation; Joseph’s steward’s words to them, “It’s all right,” he said. “Don’t be afraid. Your God, the God of your father, has given you treasure in your sacks; I received your silver.”

Joseph’s brothers: when we act deceptively towards someone else, or we don’t publicly acknowledge our sin against someone else, it often leaves us in a far worse situation. Consequently, we need to keep on lying and deceiving to keep ourselves ‘innocent’. When the truth comes out, we often hurt the people we love deeply. May the Lord help us to be humble so that we immediately acknowledge to others when we have sinned against them. It hurts far less, and it causes far less damage to our relationships than trying to hide what we have done.

Joseph’s steward: ‘This is the first clear reference in the story to the theme of divine providence – that God works through the human actions to do his will.’ (Source: NETBible) Some people find this ‘method’ of God a little disconcerting but He uses it nonetheless. We have a choice: we either accept it as one of many methods that God uses to instruct us as well as use us to bless others, or we reject it and miss getting to know our magnificent Creator. How do you choose?