What do you do when there are no rewards? I guess I am just like the next guy; I love being on the receiving end of rewards. We are all motivated by rewards. I truly think God understands this and we see blessing follow obedience many times throughout scripture and church history. But what do you do when there are no rewards?
For me I have to lean into the sometimes forgotten truths that too often sit on my bible pages like a rock in very wet mud. Taking time to be reminded that what the Lord says is true, now, and forever more, even when the circumstances do not suit me or there is no reward in sight, always redirects my spirit. Isaiah writes in 48:17, This is what the Lord says your Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel: I am the Lord your God, who teaches you what is best for you, who directs you in the way you should go. The early writers of many of our New Testament epistles springs forth right at the beginning of their letter with blessings like, I pray that you may enjoy good health and that all may go well with you, even as your soul is getting along well (3 John 12). Then in I Thessalonians 1:2-3 the Apostle Paul is thanking God for the believer and the work they had produced by faith, their labor prompted by love and an endurance inspired by hope in the Lord Jesus Christ.
Knowing this was the earliest of Pauls writing and seeing this trilogy of faith, love and hope for the first time as a new young church had to be life changing. Here were three attributes of the Christian life that would change everything. This was not the old phrase, faith, hope and love that each of us has heard a thousand times. This was new material. The idea that perhaps our motivation should be something other than what can I get out of my situation was so counter-cultural that it caused a raucous we have felt for 2000 years. The proposal was that ministry for the sake of ministry even if it meant unfair treatment or enduring difficult circumstances would become all too familiar for the early believers. The temptation would be for us to allow the compassion of Christs passion to become as lost as a great idea if I could just remember what it was?
The joy that is my hearts content is that in a way and in the time that God so wonderfully planned; when followers were at the zenith of curiosity and the narrative of this one called Jesus was pregnant with hope, God the Father in heaven broke into human history and made an appearance along with God the Holy Spirit. As they looked down on the Son, the voice from heaven said, This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased (Matthew 3:17). Is it no wonder that on the Jesus side of grace we can know that even though there may be no reward on earth that our reward in heaven with Christ is enough?
I love the fact that every time we are willing to serve our King of Kings and Lord of Lords we are a part of God breaking into human history to change the course of somebodys life. The ear may hear and the mind may think that there is no reward, but oh what the heart can see tells me different. My reward is coming! History has been changed because at a mere 11 years old a precious elderly fellow was willing to kneel by my chair in a public theatre after I finished watching a Billy Graham film in 1973. God broke into the history of my life when this individual with snow white hair and a twinkle in his eye, lead me in a simple prayer to receive Christ. Praise His Holy Name! Rewards? Who needs em, we have Jesus.
Rev. Tony R. Miller
but it is necessary to be very attentive what to rumple who it and whether there can be this person a swindler. after all and such happens. you don’t need which counterfeit production too much. simply it costs strongly cheaper.