Comitting Success to God

“Moreover, the example of the apostle teaches us what we should do after we have done our duty. Let us commit all the success of it to God, by whose providence we know all things are governed. This is the only means by which we can moderate and quiet our devices, wherein those so who are ignorant are marvelously troubled and often times abandon their duty, supposing to bring matters to pass through their own wisdom and devices. For, standing between hope and dread, they can find no resting place for their devise. But those who know that trust and diligence is required of them in doing their duty and that all success thereof depends on God, when they see they have done their duty, they ignore all dangers that come to them; no fear of danger can prevent them from doing their duty.” – Rudolf Gwalther

It is a great reminder each day that in ministry, and life, trust and diligence are required and all success depends on God.

Gospel Perspective to be Shared

“Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain.” 1 Corinthians 15:58 (ESV)

As I prepared to preach these words last week I was struck by the necessity of ministry, what is essentially the minister’s role; to live and share a life informed by a gospel perspective.

There were a couple opportunities for counseling and helping people through difficulties, there was the expositing of Scripture and also encouraging leaders and making vision decisions for the church. All of this along with being a husband and father of a growing and active family. At each moment I noticed my internal lurch toward a self-centered, anxious perspective. Thinking the worst of events (which is bad because I am generally an optimist), and figuring my striving was the only solution.

But the gospel brings a different word, a better perspective. In Christ I am secure, I am made immovable, unshakeable and empowered to do the work the Lord has called me to. None of it is in vain, but one purpose and worthwhile. This perspective, a redeemed one, changes how I approach my family, ministering and setting a vision for the future. And this perspective is exactly what I have to offer and am called to give to other believers and those in need of a savior.

Over and over again at every opportunity, this perspective is our security.  When someone is facing the unknown in the hospital. When the car is wrecked. When the relationship breaks. When the job falls through or comes through. When the lottery is won.  And when every other mundane moment of life comes along… it is the gospel and the perspective of life it forms that I bring by way of reminder, in love to others. Because I need it too.

It is with a gospel perspective, one that knows Jesus is Lord and cares for us, gives us grace for life, that we can stand, steadfast, immovable and abounding in good work. Let’s live with this perspective.