‘…Created in Christ Jesus to do good works…’ Ephesians 2:10 NIV
’…to do good works’ says we are to serve others. But remember, it is still possible to feel overloaded. Even though we love serving the Lord, sometimes our attitude will cause us stress. A toxic mix of inadequacy and perfectionism in serving leads to burnout. If you find yourself acting obsessively and compulsively, if your joy is missing and in its place you feel tension, don’t quit and feel bad, and don’t just keep going and feel overwhelmed. There is a solution. First, we must stop serving to please others. It’s the wrong motive and never works. You just end up working harder for approval and feel disappointed. Paul writes, ‘…I’m not trying to win the approval of people, but of God. If pleasing people were my goal, I would not be Christ’s servant.’ (Galatians 1:10 NLT) Our ‘well done’ must come from God, not people. Second, we must stop serving in our own strength. Jesus said, ‘…The Son can do nothing by himself. He does only what he sees the Father doing. Whatever the Father does, the Son also does.’ (John 5:19 NLT) Like dancers, they move together. That’s cooperation and interdependency. ‘…No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in Me.’ (John 15:4 NIV) It’s how Paul served. ‘…I labour, struggling with all His energy, which so powerfully works in me.’ (Colossians 1:29 NIV). He worked hard, but the energy was God’s, not his. So we must remember our source of effectiveness, and we’ll reduce the stress of serving.
SoulFood: Gen 47–49, Matt 22:34–46, Ps 26, Pro 7:26–27
The Word for Today is authored by Bob and Debby Gass and published under licence from UCB International Copyright ©