This last week on Thursday morning at the Coach’s Bible Study that I joined with Troy Weiland and some of the coaches in the area, (through FCA) we talked about the importance of having Christ be the center of absolutely everything that we do. Whether it is our interactions with the checker at the grocery store or the work that we do for a living, are we doing this with Christ at the center of it?
One of the verses that we took a look at was Colossians 3:23-24 which says,
Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the inheritance as your reward. You are serving the Lord Christ.
I remember a ministry that I was involved in for a little while at Cedarville University during my freshmen year and I will never forget a comment that the person in charge of the ministry told us after a few weeks there. He said,
” Often times when we serve we can begin to worship the ministry of God rather than the God of the ministry.”
It is in our human nature to be worshippers. God has designed us that way. The significance is in what we will worship. This was the first sin that we see in Scripture. Adam and Eve decided in the Garden of Eden that it was they who should receive some worship and “become like God” by eating the fruit instead of continuing to worship the God who created them.
So often, whether you work in a church for a living or you are serving as a volunteer, our focus can become so locked in on the work that we are doing. Sometimes we can even get to the point where we are beginning to worship the ministry of God rather than God Himself. You want to make things better than they are. You want to spend more hours prepping lessons and making the programs more appealing and fun. The problem is that if we are doing it to please man instead of doing it to serve our Lord Jesus Christ then we are doing it for the wrong reasons.
How about in things outside of church or ministries? The passage does say “whatever you do…” Are you working at your job to please your boss or are you working hard to serve God? If you are your own boss, are you working to please someone else (maybe your family) or are you working to serve God?
Why does God have a problem with us pleasing other people? I think it is because it becomes a form of worship. Our main focus should be to make sure that our God is pleased with us. If I am more concerned with what my friend thinks instead of what God thinks, I am placing my friend in a place of higher value than I place God. As someone who naturally wants to please everyone that I interact with, this is a very difficult passage for me because I realize my short-comings. My primary concern in everything that I do should be to serve my God and not those around me. Are you worshipping God with your life or are you worshipping yourself, your work, or other people? What will you worship?