There was an entire world to look out at, a whole horizon out of reach. She wandered and watched her footsteps vanish behind her, swept away by waves hugging the shore and blurring her past. She was looking anywhere but ahead, and how could she not? It was a whipping world all about her. Captivating in every way, she wasn’t walking for a destination, but simply to walk. Surely her original destination would still be ahead of her when she did look back up.
So she did look up, and found herself facing a direction she did not recognize. The wind picked up and suddenly the sand she had been watching attacked and the shells at the soles of her feet became spears. Hadn’t this all been peaceful a moment ago?
Why was she here in the first place? Had she been tricked into it? Were the promises she had believed simply a rouse to get her alone and leave here that way? Where was she going, and finally, is it worth all of this?
She felt a stir in her spirit as it reminded her of the hope to come, she had been so distracted she had left her fire of hope to flicker. And as she focused on her heart, gently stoking the promise of hope in her heart, his truths got louder.
The promise is still there. The destination has not shifted. Head up and eyes forward. The winds cannot blow away what is inside of you. This is bigger than waves of doubt and winds of confusion. Stay set on the destination, stay set on me.
When we serve the body of Christ it’s easy to lose the heart behind it. The fact is that when we serve the body, we are serving the father. It’s not the work itself that edifies the kingdom, but the heart we have behind serving.
“And all of you, dress yourselves in humility as you relate to one another” (1 Peter 5:5)
Since we are serving more than people, but the kingdom, that means that what comes against us is deeper than the surface. When we work to advance the kingdom we must be vigilant in realizing that there are things that actively work against us.
When trials come against us in our pursuit of serving others, the heart we have in serving becomes that much more important. When we know why and who we serve we know the purpose for our work and in that there is strength to endure.
1 Peter 5 talks about shepherding the flock well and serving others with a humble spirit. Jesus is the Great Shepherd and therefore understands the trials that await those who serve better than anyone. Everything in this world is stacked up to muffle the truth from the world, it is our job to push through.
What is stacking up against you today? What are you relying on to push you through?
1 Peter 5 talks about what it is to lead with a humble heart and persevere when the world comes against us.
“Stay alert! Watch out for your great enemy, the devil. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour. Stand firm against him, and be strong in your faith. Remember that your family of believers all over the world is going through the same kind of suffering you are.” – Proverbs 5:8-9
When your heart is in the right place, pushing and working for the right reasons, know that all of Heaven is for you, but all the world is against you. As you work to sow the seeds for the kingdom with your service, be watchful over your weaknesses and the darkness that is around you waiting to hit a weak spot.
As you struggle, pull strength from the knowledge, not only of the victory of Jesus, but the camaraderie of the Body of Christ. You neither struggle alone or in vain.
We push and strive for the kingdom that cannot be shaken, so why should we be shaken? Plant your heart in Heaven, set your eyes on Jesus, and find your hands fearlessly reaching to those around you.
Finally, this is a battle in the name of Jesus, that same name is where our hope is stored.
“In his kindness God called you to share in his eternal glory by means of Christ Jesus. So after you have suffered a little while, he will restore, support, and strengthen you, and he will place you on a firm foundation.” – 1Peter 5:10
This name we bear puts a target on our backs, yes, but an unwavering hope in our hearts. Suffering now is nothing compared to the rejoicing that awaits us.