Are You Ready?

Because the Lord has great work in store for us, we must be ready! Waiting for someone who is late is frustrating; on the other hand, “I’m ready” are pleasing and uplifting words. Jesus said we must be ready to answer questions people ask us about our faith (I Peter 3:15).

In our culture, situations demand in various ways that we be ready. In baseball, the umpire will say, “Play ball.”  In an auto race, the words are, “Start your engines.” The Lord simply wants us to be in a state of readiness to serve Him when the opportunity presents itself. How can we be in constant readiness?

First, we must use repetition. Paul writes that we are to pray without ceasing (I Thessalonians 5:17). The early Christians took the Lord’s Supper on the first day of the week. Each week has a first day, so for the Christian the repetition of weekly communion encourages us to be ready. Jesus had the habit of worship (Luke 4:16). Daniel had the habit of daily prayer (Daniel 6:10). These kinds of repetitive acts keep us ready for service.

Second, there are occasions when we need to be revived. Persecutions seemed to do that for the early church. In Acts 8:4, when the Christians scattered because of their faith, their dedication was renewed as they went everywhere preaching about Jesus. Worship services can revive us. Rest can revive us. People contact can revive us. Some people are uplifting simply by having a conversation with them. Helping with a mission effort, in person or financially, can revive us.

Third, we need to review our Christian service. Paul recounted his weaknesses and what he needed to do to keep them under control (I Corinthians 9:27). In II Timothy 4:6-8, Paul reviewed his life and knew he was ready to die. The rich young ruler had his life reviewed for him by the Lord and he was not ready. The review showed there was one thing missing, and that was his attitude toward the poor and his willingness to sacrifice material possessions. Review helps see what is keeping us from being ready.

A word for the servant of the Lord is ready!

God Wants Our Best

When God created the world, he gave us the very best world possible. After he finished the creation, he saw that “it was very good” (Genesis 1:31). When God chose to redeem sinful man, God gave the best. He did not give an animal but rather He gave His only Son (John 3:16). When God gave us the church, He gave us the best institution. The church was purchased with the precious blood of His only Son (Acts 20:28). God always gives us the best and He expects the best we have to offer.

God expects the best life we can give (Matthew 5:48 and Matthew 5:13-16). If we are to provide the light of Jesus Christ in our lives, we must give the best we can in the way we live our lives. The parable of the talents in Matthew 25 makes it clear that what abilities we have been given must be used in the very best ways possible.

God expects us to treat others the best way we can. We are to be kind to each other and forgiving of each other (Ephesians 4:32). We are to speak positive words and encouraging words (Colossians 4:6). We are to teach and train our children to be servants of the Lord and respect their parents (Ephesians 6:1-4). We are to love our enemies and not to return evil with evil (Romans 12:18-21).

God expects us to do everything to glorify His name (Colossians 3:17). Even giving someone a cup of cold water in his name is a blessing (Matthew 10:42). Nothing is insignificant when we do it to glorify His name.

One of the most important ways to give our best is to be continually looking for ways to teach others about Jesus Christ. We know this because the Bible teaches us that one soul is worth more than the whole world (Matthew 16:26). One of the reasons we remember Andrew (John 1:40-41) is because the first thing he did when he learned of Jesus was to bring his brother Peter to Him.

The Lord gave His best for us. The least we can do is give our best to Him who created us and made it possible to live in heaven when this life is over.