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Sunday, January 31, 2010

Finish the Work

“And he erected the court around the tabernacle and the altar, and set up the screen of the gate of the court. So Moses finished the work.” Exodus 40:33

There is not a doubt in my mind that after a year of leading the Israelites through the wilderness, meeting with God and pleading on their behalf, dealing with their bickering and backsliding, and bearing the weight of the nation on his shoulders, Moses was tired. Moses needed a vacation, he needed a sick day, a time of extended rest, or just needed to walk away and find a different job. But instead Moses finished the work. He could have put his two weeks in, handed over the reigns to Joshua and went into early retirement, but instead he finished the work. There is no doubt he wanted to be rid of the burden of his people, of the drain of his in ministry, but instead he finished the work. I know there are many times in the Christian life where we want to walk away. A ministry we're doing isn't taking off and pulling in the numbers we want, a friend we've been praying for just doesn't seem anymore interested in the gospel, a family member keeps sinking back into addiction, a strained marriage shows no signs of improvement, the nation overall, despite our money and best efforts, still seems to be falling more and more into atheism. Many of us are weary of the never ending needs of ministering to a fallen and lost world. We're nearing the fifteenth round and the towel we could throw seems so tempting. The comfort of a life unconcerned with the needs of others and our own sanctification whispers sweet nothings in our ears, seducing us away from the work we've been called to. Like Moses, God has called all believers to a life that we are incapable of living on our own. He has called us to suffering, to exile, to ridicule, and discomfort. He has called us to abandon worldly pleasures and seek the pleasures of God. He has called us to make disciples of a world that doesn't want to follow anybody. I know that the labor is hard, but dear brother and sister, we must finish the work. All the suffering in this world is worth the joy of the presence of God for eternity. So don't give up, don't listen to the whispers of comfort, don't bow to the need for breaks, for absence, and for quitting. Finish with strength the work God has called you to and do not let the devil win. Just as Jesus is faithful to complete the work he began in you, complete the work he began through you as well. Pray for each other, that we might all finish the labor, and collect the harvest of God's kingdom.

Lord Jesus, give us strength we don't have to accomplish the impossible calling to which you have called us!

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