Having recently (31JUL2017) broken my wrist, which is now in a cast, I am keenly aware of how difficult it is to do even the simplest things when a body part is not functioning as it should. Consequently, this old bit of journaling is very appropriate!
My question to all who claim to be part of the Body of Christ: are we not basically handicapping God when we fail to function as we should? (See 1 Corinthians 12:12-27.)
In those moments just before waking up this morning, I was singing several songs, but one of them was brand new. I’d never heard this song before, and I can’t remember now how the melody line went. All I remember was it had a good rhythm that helped add emphasis to the right words. I don’t know that I’m remembering the exact wording correctly, but they basically said we tie the Father’s hands because we won’t work with our own.
I was reminded of this during Praise & Worship (P&W) at church as we sang about how great God is and about wanting the world to know that. (Specifically, we were singing “Did You Feel the Mountains Tremble?” and “How Great Is Our God.”) But the world won’t know if we don’t show them.
We either help or hinder His glory from being seen. When we don’t do our part (“work with our own hands”), we basically tie His. We are the vessels He has chosen to use. Who else is going to make His glory shine, if not us—you and me?
The comforting thought to me was that our efforts don’t have to be big and obvious. The little things we do and the little ways we behave are like a voice that’s lost in a crowd that is singing. Sure, no one can distinguish that one voice out of the many, but if every undistinguishable voice were to quit singing, then there wouldn’t be the thunderous singing! Thunderous singing is made up of many voices contributing to the volume—a volume that is greater than any one voice can produce alone.
I’ve always been a loud singer (thank God, I’m pretty good at it!). When worship services were quieter, I could always hear myself. But as worship services have gotten louder, I’ve found myself lost in the crowd.
Suddenly I wasn’t making a big, noticeable contribution … and I felt insignificant. I remember thinking (back when I first noticed this), What’s the point of trying? No one can hear me over all this noise! And indeed, I’ve looked around congregations during loud P&W and noticed many who were not singing. (Are they thinking the same thing?)
Fortunately, though, God didn’t let that feeling last long. Not that I went back to feeling “spotlight” special, but I became OK with just being a part of the worshipping crowd. (It helped to remember that one day I’ll worship with an untold number around His throne, and I certainly won’t be more special than anyone else!) Since I’d already had this lesson, I was able to receive this new one today.
I would still love to do something big and grandiose for God—not because I need attention, but because God is so glorious He deserves it. I’m learning that magnifying God and His glory for the benefit of others doesn’t require big and obvious works. I can do some very non-spotlight things that still make a needed contribution to increase the volume we make so the world can really hear the Good News!
Thank You, God, for teaching me that “spotlight” work isn’t the only work I can do for You. Thank You for providing a greater purpose to all the non-spotlight things I do. Help me now, Holy Spirit, to do them—either one, spotlight or not—in the loving, grateful way that really helps to glorify Jesus before the world. I gladly will work my hands at any task You give me, knowing that it frees Yours to do awesome, mighty things—things I cannot begin to imagine.
Thanks for reading!