Joy of How God is Using Me

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by Mark Malcolm

18 Here is what I have seen to be good and fitting: to eat, to drink and enjoy oneself in all one’s labor in which he toils under the sun during the few years of his life which God has given him; for this is his reward. 19 Furthermore, as for every man to whom God has given riches and wealth, He has also empowered him to eat from them and to receive his reward and rejoice in his labor; this is the gift of God. 20 For he will not often consider the years of his life, because God keeps him occupied with the gladness of his heart. Ecclesiastes 5:18-20 (NASB)

Over the course of the last month you have been encouraged to get involved in ministering to the children of God. This may or may not have been a labor of joy for you. You may have other activities you enjoy doing more than that which you labor at for God. To a greater or lesser degree your preparations have brought you into closer contact with a ministry and effort directed as supporting His children in some way. This should not be to the exclusion of Joy in your own life.

If the sacrifice in your life gives you pleasure then by all means, sacrifice. If they labor you perform is a Joy in and of itself, then continue to labor. If the work done to create and support Hope in other’s day to day existence stokes the fires of Hope in you then by all means continue to keep the home fires burning. But, if what you have been doing for God is work, difficult and demanding reread this week’s scripture please.

God has awakened a spirit in you that hungers for His work, His ways, His direction. That spirit must be fed but the body must be fed also. You walk on His path, so partake of what He provides with Joy and thanksgiving. To whatever level your efforts have provided for your life, enjoy it as you do what He asks of you. There is nothing wrong with that. Do not envy those who appear to have more. There will always be someone who appears to have more than we do. They walk their own path and envy is not a spirit of the Lord.

Hope, Peace, Joy, these are from the Spirit of the Lord. These are the things we endeavor to emulate and encourage. We move in His ways to help others learn about Jesus and His ways. As we do so, the worker is worthy of his wage so do not feel guilty if you discover you are content and at peace with what others feel is drudgery or impossible labor. Or, perhaps that is your feeling concerning what you do and you wonder when you will be given your rest. God worked six days over creation and on the seventh he rested. Make sure your seventh day is always there, and make sure it is restful. Make room in that rest to enjoy that which you have been blessed with to whatever level that is because it is God’s intention that His children enjoy the life He has given them, not toil endlessly in it.

Bio from my web site :

Smiling Mark IIMark Malcolm is a child of God, husband, father, project manager, technical writer, gamer, fiction writer, Marine (’87-’91), has practiced Shao Lin Kung Fu and Tai Chi, been published in magazines and newspapers (editorial anyway), and seen the Southern Cross.

The goals he has currently are to more accurately identify the path God has for him to walk, continue to provide for his family, establish a solid web presence, build a career writing novels through both traditional and independent publishing, and learn to better relate to the people around him.

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