My drive time to work in the morning is an extended part of quiet time I’ve had with the Lord. Some mornings I can’t get it together and fly out the door before even acknowledging God. But I can depend on having at least 35 minutes of uninterrupted time in my car as I drive to work. Some of my most profound moments have been in that quiet time. There are mornings so beautiful the praise flows in spoken prayer. Sometimes I listen to music and praise at the top of my lungs because it is in that space I can sing like no one is listening except the Lord. Other times there are tears streaming down my face as I think about how good He is to me and how grateful I am for all that He continues to do in my life. There have also been times when the tears are from a place of pain as we’ve worked through some trials, some pruning, and places of brokenness.
7 You are the one who gives us victory over our enemies;
you disgrace those who hate us.
8 O God, we give glory to you all day long
and constantly praise your name. (Psalm 44:7-8 NLT)
This week’s readings spoke to me about the quality of what I do for God.
Solomon had received instructions from the LORD on how to build his Temple. We learn in a previous chapter that he had asked for a master craftsman to be sent from Tyre. The brass maker, Huram-abi, was sent. I can imagine he took his time and created each intricate piece to be placed in the temple. He was giving God his best. These articles were going to be used for the sacrifices and glory of God in His holy temple. God created him to have this talent and he painstakingly used his gift for the articles God had given instruction to create.
So at last Huram-abi completed everything King Solomon had assigned him to make for the Temple of God:
12 the two pillars;
the two bowl-shaped capitals on top of the pillars;
the two networks of interwoven chains that decorated the capitals;
13 the 400 pomegranates that hung from the chains on the capitals (two rows of pomegranates for each of the chain networks that decorated the capitals on top of the pillars);
14 the water carts holding the basins;
15 the Sea and the twelve oxen under it;
16 the ash buckets, the shovels, the meat hooks, and all the related articles. (2 Chron. 4:12-16 NLT)
I thought of my own gifts and talents. Where has He asked me to use them? Am I giving Him my best? Do I do everything with excellence or are there times I do just enough to get by?
I have noticed the difference when I serve God with what I think I am supposed to do vs when I am actually serving doing what He has called me to do. With the later, somehow I never tire, am full of enthusiasm, and the time flies. If someone gives me praise for what I’ve accomplished, I quickly point to God and give Him the glory for I know it was from Him I was able to do whatever it was. However, there have been times when I did things out of a place of insecurity and wanting people to notice me. There is no fulfillment in me when that happens, no joy, and I feel drained. Over the years I have learned it is never good to strive to do what I want to do. Learning to listen to God for those opportunities draws me deeper into relationship with Him. It always amazes me how He sends me to the exact place, to the exact person, or the exact event where I can use my gifts and talents. When we all are acting as our part of the Body of Christ, we can see God make lasting change in people’s lives.
Heavenly Father, I continue to look to you to do what only You can do through me. I never want to miss out on an opportunity to serve you, to be Your hands and feet, and fulfill my place in the Body of Christ. My soul is filled when I empty myself and my motives and give You control. Thank you for letting me share the story of what you’ve done in my life with others. In Jesus name, Amen