I don’t know why, but for the past couple of weeks, my heart has been burdened over the following verse:
“Now anyone who builds on that foundation [Jesus Christ] may use gold, silver, jewels, wood, hay, or straw. But there is going to come a time of testing at the judgment day to see what kind of work each builder has done. Everyone’s work will be put through the fire to see whether or not it keeps its value. If the work survives the fire, that builder will receive a reward. But if the work is burned up, the builder will suffer great loss. The builders themselves will be saved, but only like someone escaping through a wall of flames.” 1 Corinthians 3: 12-15
One of the things I really struggle with in my Christian walk is getting the right balance of service and faith. I don’t want to fall into the mindset of some – that I can work my way into heaven, because I don’t believe I will ever be able to do enough work to make it there. And, I believe that Jesus is the Christ, the son of the Living God, and the only way to heaven. But so many verses throughout the New Testament talk about “working” for God as well, and that as Christians we must be willing to put our faith into action. As the verse above indicates, our work will also be tested with fire and what is good, faithful, productive, and solid will last, and everything else will be burned up. Because we are born again believers in Christ, through grace we will still receive the blessings of heaven, but just by the skin of our teeth.
So, my predicament comes in knowing what type of service is service that will hold up under the Lord’s testing? I in no way believe that we’re to just be pew-sitters. But what kind of work is considered to be gold, silver or jewels? Do I need to go to the mission field, or will serving in the local church be enough? Am I supposed to become a street evangelist and try to win the masses? Should I be knocking on doors and giving my testimony to strangers and inviting them to church? Or should I have my own kind of ministry that only I can do? Or, is this something that God reveals to everyone of us at different times in our walk – like sanctification?
It’s all very confusing to me. I would very much hate to have been a Christian all these many years, just to find out that I didn’t put my faith into action in the correct ways or enough times. I don’t want to barely get into heaven by the skin of my teeth!
“Dear Lord, please reveal this mystery to my heart and help me to understand what it is you want me to do for you and your kingdom. Give me the courage and determination to act on that revelation, no matter what it might be. Thank you for sending Jesus to us to show us how to live and provide a way for us to escape the fires of hell. In his precious and holy name I pray, amen.”