One Sunday night many years ago I received a phone call that I was sure would be good news—but the news that night was deeply disappointing. It was a shock and a deep and bitter disappointment. The Christian gentleman on the other end of the line was named Gordon. He has since gone to be with the Lord. He closed the phone call with words of comfort written by Paul:
“Be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, for you know that your labor is not in vain in the Lord.”
Since then I have taken that advice over and over again. I have tried to be steadfast and unmovable and I have tried to always abound in the work of the Lord in all the years since then. I have reminded myself that no work for the Lord, no matter how small or insignificant it seems is in vain—work for the Lord is not empty or meaningless.
I don’t know who out there needs to hear this, but I want to be faithful to lay that truth on your soul today. You may have suffer a bitter disappointment. Your assignment may seem small and insignificant and ineffectual. No one may ever know your name beyond your immediate circle of friends— but this I can say to you by the Word of the Lord—like Gordon reminded me on the phone that night—“Be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord for you know that your labor is not in vain in the Lord.”
When the phone call ended I lay on the bed and wept—for about five minutes. I got up, dried my eyes and threw myself back into the work of the Lord. The next few months of my life were difficult and uncertain, but soon the ways of God were clear and the reason for my disappointment was revealed.
Recently I have received news that is bitterly disappointing—I know the enemy of my soul would love to see me on the “injured reserve” —but I will throw myself into the work of the Lord with fresh enthusiasm and devotion. I know that my labor is not in vain in the Lord. Nothing will keep me from serving the Lord. Nothing. Nothing.
I will praise Him with my last breath
I will follow Him with my last step
I will love Him until the last beat of my heart
…and then I will go to be with Him and I will see that my labor was not in vain.
Labor Day, September 1, 2014