Thursday, May 3, 2012
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When Walt Disney animated the story of Snow White, he created seven memorable, even if short characters - the seven dwarfs. I'm not one of them! Now, I'm not going to ask you to name them; we'll save that for a game of Trivial Pursuit or something. But I always loved that little song they sang on the way to work.
And well, they didn't exactly work in an environmentally controlled office building. They worked in a mine all day. Not the greatest place to work! But each day they would merrily march off to work singing, (I won't sing it for you, but here we go.) "Hi-ho, it's off to work we go." Well, what a great way to approach your responsibilities. I mean, anyone who does is no dwarf; he's a giant.
I'm Ron Hutchcraft and I want to have A Word With You today about a "Prescription For a Weary Worker."
Now, I attended a meeting of people who are very busy in Christian ministry, and one woman expressed a feeling that, as it turned out, everybody in the room agreed with. She said, "You know, people are working for the Lord around here, and they get very discouraged or they quit because of one word - weariness." And I watched a lot of heads nodding in that room.
Now, there are a lot of men and women who have spiritual responsibility and they struggle with a deep weariness, and it's far beyond physical. They're just tired of pushing, and of being sometimes the one of the few who care. They're tired of little results for a lot of work, and maybe not being appreciated. Some of you might say, "Well, how did you know?" Because there are a lot of us that serve the Lord that start to feel that way sometime or another.
Okay, our word for today from the Word of God, Hebrews 12:2-4 - "Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and the perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider Him who endured such opposition from sinful men..." And then notice this, "...so that you will not grow weary and lose heart."
And then the writer goes on to say, "In your struggle against sin, you have not yet resisted to the point of shedding your blood." Okay, there's this weariness that we talked about that some people who are listening can identify with; that deep, emotional kind that saps your physical strength too. And there's discouragement; the kind that results in a mechanical kind of service - just kind of crank it out. And honestly, more and more frequent thoughts of quitting.
Weariness, according to Hebrews 12, seems to result from taking your eyes off Jesus. Maybe you're weary because you've been doing God's work in your strength. You know better, but you've gone from God working through you to the crank-it-out weariness of you suddenly working for God. Oh, you're doing the same things, but it's not Him through you. It's you for Him. Or it could be that you've been looking at the results you're getting instead of the Savior you're serving. He gives the results; He gives the rewards, people don't.
Is it time to get your eyes back on the Jesus whose love compelled you to serve in the first place?
You know, when Jacob had to work seven years to earn the right to marry Rachel, I love what the Bible says, "They seemed like only a few days to him because of his love for her." See, love makes the difference. See, then you'll be able to join that saint who served the Lord for 70 years and who sang that song, "Since I started for the kingdom, since my life He controls, since I gave my life to Jesus, the longer I serve Him, the sweeter He grows."