At A Glance – Do you find yourself over-extended or wanting to quit? What’s on your plate now and what will get added this fall? Sometimes we need to stop and ask what the Lord wants us to do today.
Have you ever found yourself overwhelmed with tasks because you said “Yes” too many times? If you’re like me, it’s not a matter of “Have I”, but more like “How often!” I find myself there too often!
The other side of that coin is to have something on your plate that has become hard or frustrating. Do you have an assignment or task you want to quit?
Been there, done that! I’m sure I’m not alone. You have probably found yourself in this position, too.
A New Season
We are entering a time of year when lots of activities start. Even though some of us are not tied to the school calendar anymore, many things still operate with this cadence. Start in September and run through the spring.
What are you being asked to do? To add to your plate?
My experience has been to pray about my choices beforehand and to let the Lord guide me. Multiple times I’ve had that nudge from the Holy Spirit that says “This is not for you.” Or I’ve felt the pure joy when I’m aligned with what the Lord wants and I can tell “This is right!”
I want to share a post from my good friend Brenda Koinis who writes at Smoother Sailing – How to’s From the Big Book. She shares some wisdom from Paul in the book of Colossians about this topic.
Think about this as you make your plans for this next season of serving.
What’s On Your Plate?
Raise your hand if you’ve:
- Already read the book of Colossians several times.
- Done a Bible study on it?
- Heard countless sermons where the text is taken from that popular letter of Paul’s?
Then join me in being somewhat astonished that there’s always something new to learn there. Here’s what I read today:
“Tell Archippus: ‘See to it that you complete the work you have received in the Lord.’” (Colossians 4:17).
Now, I’m just guessing here, but since Paul saw fit to include that line in his letter, maybe Archippus was tempted to quit. Quit what? Who knows? But whatever it was, it was a task the Lord had given him, and one he was meant to complete. And, evidently, he needed a bit of solid encouragement and direction to do just that.
The Work You Have Received From The Lord
What work have you received from the Lord? Ah, yes, we all take on tasks we shouldn’t, maybe out of pride or greed or simple American ambition-on-steroids. That’s a lesson for another day. I’m talking about work you know in your heart the Lord wants you to do. It might be a life’s work. It might be an afternoon’s calling. Some versions of Colossians 4:17 use the word “ministry” instead of “work” to describe what Archippus needs to keep doing. I believe all work the Lord calls us to do, whether lofty or lowly, is really our ministry. So, no matter what the task might be, don’t quit!
- Is it slow going? Don’t quit. God’s timing seldom matches our own. Be patient. Trust. Worship as you wait.
- Is it hard? Hard is okay. Hard just reminds us that we need Him. Ask the Lord to equip you.
- Is it obvious that the outcome will be far different than what you expected? That’s okay, too. ‘Better His outcome than yours, even if that’s a tough truth to swallow.
Paul’s directions to Archippus don’t make it onto many Bible memory programs, but I hope you’ll work on committing his words to memory this week anyway. Let them soak into your soul so they can pop into your mind just when you need the encouragement to persist. Here they are one more time:
“Tell Archippus: ‘See to it that you complete the work you have received in the Lord’” (Colossians 4:17).
Here is the direct link to this article on Smoother Sailing.
Key Takeaway – Give any long-term request for your time thought and prayer before you say Yes. Be open to the small opportunities to serve and encourage.
Assignment – Evaluate what’s on your plate now and what is coming for the Fall. See what your “work” from the Lord is.