Vol. 18 No. 38 | September 26, 2016
I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who has given me strength, that he considered me trustworthy, appointing me to his service. … 14 The grace of our Lord was poured out on me abundantly, along with the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus. (1 Timothy 1:12, 14, NIV)
To be considered trustworthy to His service is an honor beyond description. I have been in full-time local church ministry for almost 41 years. It has been an honor and a privilege that has created unspeakable joy, and at times unutterable heartache.
To feel appointed to His service, which we might consider a calling, is an incredibly humbling experience. It is an honor to think that the Lord could use me in a special way to introduce Him to people who do not know Him, to help those who know Him know Him better, and to encourage the discouraged. St. Frances of Assisi has probably said it best:
Lord, make me an instrument of your peace,
Where there is hatred, let me sow love;
where there is injury, pardon;
where there is doubt, faith;
where there is despair, hope;
where there is darkness, light;
where there is sadness, joy;
O Divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled as to console;
to be understood as to understand;
to be loved as to love.
For it is in giving that we receive;
it is in pardoning that we are pardoned;
and it is in dying that we are born to eternal life.
To feel appointed in His service, which we might consider a calling, is also a curse. Once you get a taste of being considered trustworthy in His service you cannot get away from it. You cannot stop wanting to know that feeling. You cannot resist the joy that is found in serving Him. You cannot un-call the calling.
To be considered trustworthy for His service is an honor and a challenge. It can be a blessing and a curse. It can be joy-filled and heartbreaking. It can be rich and rewarding and it can be difficult and draining. There are good seasons and seasons of distress. Through it all when we realize that we have been considered trustworthy in His service we move forward with courage. We seek opportunities to serve. We strive to please Him with our hearts, souls, mind, and strength. When we fail we try again. When we fall down we get back up. As we get back up we look around to see who else may have fallen and reach out our hand to help them stand back up. And as we serve we find rest and pleasure in knowing that, “The grace of our Lord was poured out on me abundantly, along with the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus.”
I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who has given me strength, that he considered me trustworthy, appointing me to his service.
A Norvell Note © Copyright 2016. Tom Norvell All Rights Reserved.