In 1978 I took a vacation to the island of Kauai in Hawaii. I hiked the Napali Coast trail, later stayed in a nice hotel, and did the tourist thing. And as is my philosophy when away from home - go to church. Visiting another church to worship gives a person a chance to steal good ideas and bring them home. So, I went to Lihue Lutheran Church established in 1885. Great worship service and I gave thanks for being on vacation. After the service, to my astonishment, the pastor who was in his eighties was up on the roof of the fellowship hall they were building pulling plywood around. As I stood on the ground their ramrod for the construction project told me, "We can’t keep pastor off the project. He’s amazing." My first thought as a twenty-five year old was, I want to be that guy. Now, I’m getting closer to it.
At age eighty I want to be serving our Lord Jesus physically like I was a twenty year old - or as best as my body will let me. At age eighty I want to be sharing God’s Grace with all that I have physically and verbally.
Theologically, I believe that God put us on the earth to work and serve. It is that Garden of Eden thing. We can change our position and service in the Garden and serve the owner of the vineyard in a different capacity. But we are to be about work. Humans are designed by God our creator to work. Then of course Jesus tells us to share His Gospel which gives us more to do. It is true sometimes you have to go on unemployment or illness robs you of your capacity to serve. But even then sometimes we have to become someone’s responsibility so that they can do ministry and be employed. Take note that in Luke the holy Son of God, Jesus, had eight women that not only paid for the ministry but took care of Jesus’ needs. Jesus did not take advantage of them sexually or was married to Mary as some would like us to believe. Jesus could very well take care of himself. But he allowed these women to cook and care for him as a response for their healing and salvation that Jesus had given them earlier. They needed to be about serving for their own spiritual growth.
The question really is as we live out our lives. "God, please show me how best to serve you." Keep me employed.
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