stroke of life

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by Pastor Mark Jordan

“With all this going for us, my dear, dear friends, stand your ground. And don’t hold back. Throw yourselves into the work of the Master, confident that nothing you do for him is a waste of time or effort.” (1 Corinthians 15:58, MSG) 

I have recently been thinking about how often the Bible teaches to take a stand in the face of difficulties. Sometimes it feels like standing isn’t merely enough with so much to do, while others the very thought of standing seems like too great an effort. As the Apostle Paul wrote what we know as today’s verse, he was referring primarily to the latter. He recognized that sin, guilt, and death is enough to bring anyone down, but the victorious nature of Christ is a stroke of life; therefore, the Jesus follower should stand, throw themselves into their work (whatever that is), and do so knowing that it is never a waste of time when it’s done for God.

That pattern is worth remembering. Take your stand. Throw yourself into your work. Be confident that nothing you do for God is done in vain, even when circumstances seem hopeless and bleak. There are sure to be times when you’ll wonder, “why bother?” The answer emerges, however, when you’ve or come to realize that regardless of whatever you do, it might just be the stroke of life God uses to save someone.

No effort or gesture is too small for God to use. So whatever it is you can do today, do it. Take your stand against apathy or fear. Throw yourself into whatever it is you can do to serve God by serving others. And as you do so, be confident that God will never let a single thing done for Him be for naught. Ever.

Prayer: Dear Lord, thank you for using me to be the stroke of life that might introduce someone to you. Forgive me for those times when I fear that nothing I do is ever enough. Help me to see the strokes of life you’ve used in the past to bring me to you, so those may be examples for how I can show others your eternal love. I ask this in Jesus’ name. Amen.

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