Selfless Part 4: Grateful In The Grind
Philippians 2:2-4 (MGS) Be deep-spirited friends . . . . Put yourself aside, and help others get ahead . . . . Forget yourselves long enough to lend a helping hand.
Most of us live our lives under the illusion that something around the corner matters more than what we are doing now. We find ourselves wishing our current season away, waiting for the next season to come. But around every corner is another challenge, dream, or perceived joy.
Proverbs 28:19 (NIV) Those who work their land will have abundant food, but those who chase fantasies will have their fill of poverty.
For much of our lives we pursue self-centered passions over God’s purposes. We live for “my dreams, my goals, and my glory.” If we are honest, most of what we do, we do for ourselves.
GRATEFUL IN THE GRIND
1 Corinthians 10:31 (NIV) Whatever you do, do it for the glory of God.
- The prize isn’t something that is “out there.”
- The prize isn’t in what you accomplish occasionally.
- The prize is in what you do daily for the glory of God.
Ecclesiastes 2:24 (VOICE) There is nothing better than for people to eat and drink and to see the good [find joy] in their hard work [toil]. These beautiful gifts, I realized, too, come from God’s hand.
Solomon is saying, “Stop wishing your current season of life away. Instead, look to see what God is doing in it.”
WHAT IF THE WORK IS THE REWARD
The things of this world cannot delight us, they only delude us. They cannot fulfill us, they can only busy us. They can’t bring joy.
Genesis 15:1 (NKJV) [God says,] I am your shield, your exceedingly great reward.
When I serve God, when I do things for His glory, God fills me with His love, His presence, His peace, and His power, until I am overflowing with His joy. Working for Him is the reward!
WHAT IF THE PRIZE IS IN PROCESS
2 Kings 6:15-17 (NIV) When the servant of the man of God got up and went out early the next morning, an army with horses and chariots had surrounded the city. “Oh no, my lord! What shall we do?” the servant asked. “Don’t be afraid,” the prophet answered. “Those who are with us are more than those who are with them.” And Elisha prayed, “Open his eyes, Lord, so that he may see.” Then the Lord opened the servant’s eyes, and he looked and saw the hills full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha.
There are no testimonies without tests. The prize is seeing the hand of God; God’s spirit guiding me, strengthening me, and knowing He is with me no matter what I am facing.
WHAT IF WE CAN BE GRATEFUL IN THE GRIND
Life isn’t about me. It’s not about indulging myself, or treating myself, it is about denying myself and following Jesus. You are an ambassadors for Christ. Every step is on purpose.
Psalm 37:23 (AMP) The steps of a [good and righteous] man are directed and established by the Lord, And He delights in his way [and blesses his path].
Every step is on purpose. When things are bad, I am here to be a light. When things are good, I’m here to shine for Jesus. Think about it, Paul started churches in the good times but wrote 3/4ths of the New Testament in the bad times. There was purpose in every step!
THE THREE ENEMIES OF THE TRUE REWARD
- The pillow: the seduction of comfort. Self Indulgence.
If I had a better house or car. If I made enough to take it easy. God never called us to “easy.” Easy never changed the world.
- The shiny thing: the allure of constant distractions. Facebook Notifications. Netflix suggestions. Comparing what we have with what other people have.
- The towel: the perpetual temptation to quit.
You can either throw in the towel or use it to wipe the sweat off your face, get back up, and keep moving forward.
When we are selfless, doing everything we do for the glory of God, we can be grateful because of who God is and what He has done. We can be grateful even in the grind of life.