Have you ever felt that ministry or doing things for God were a burdensome task? As if it were a chore? It isn’t done with joy anymore. Instead, it becomes a labor, only tolerated. But, you have to do it right? With blogging and Instagram-ing about God, I once started to feel this way. My mindset about it slowly shifted from being a happy servant, into an unhappy slave.
I am only sharing my experience with you because I feel that you may be able to relate. So, after realizing this, I took a break from everything… and, girl I learned so much! I was led to ask myself questions.
1. Why was I doing this? I knew the “right” answer! "Jesus!" But, no! God was asking me to examine my heart and search for things I might not want to see.
2. Was it for likes and comments- you know an ego-boost, approval of others, pride?
3. Did I feel like I “had" to continue on with what I started, as to not be a failure?
4. Was it for the recognition I started to get?
5. Was I caught up in growing in this “ministry thing.”
6. Was it to work out what I was taught by, “those” people, who told me how to make my feed or website look pretty.
For YOU this could be anything… Think about it!
THE MOTIVE OF LOVE!
All of the advice was helpful... so helpful; but my motives should’ve been, “I do this only because I love God!” That is true for all of us. We should do what we do for Him, because of the love we have for Him, due to the love He shows us.
Yes, that is it, right there! We love Him so much, that we want to share His goodness... with nothing, I repeat NOTHING in return, but to see His name glorified. That should be my motive. That should be your motive. However, it can sadly become just a really godly routine.
We can love Him, but that motive can begin to slip from being the center to meaning “I have to!"
One thing that was painful for me, was concerning a well familiar verse (Luke 10:38–42). I feel God brought this to my mind, as I wrestled with the motives of my heart.
A SHORT RECAP OF THOSE VERSES!
Jesus was traveling to a village, and a woman named Martha welcomed Him into her home. This woman was hospitable! She wanted to serve Jesus and appeared to have good intentions. She had a sister named Mary.
Now, Mary was sitting at Jesus' feet, just listening to His Word. But, this made Martha unhappy. Martha, the hospitable one, the one who invited Jesus, was preparing a lot of stuff. Probably cooking, though we don’t know what.
For us… Maybe chicken. Maybe some butter garlic toast, yummy spices, and Pinterest propped up as we follow a recipe from a board we have had for years. Martha was doing a lot of work!
Mary, however, was just sitting listening to Jesus. What!?! How could she leave Martha to do all of the preparings? Didn’t she have a hospitable heart too? Didn’t she care to not leave her sister doing all of the work?
MARTHA WAS NOT HAVING IT!
Well, Martha had these feelings. I mean, how could Mary leave her? So, what did Martha do? In her mind, she probably thought “I am about to tell on Mary." Martha went up to Jesus and said exactly these words from Scripture “Lord, do you not care, my sister has left me to do all the work (but watch this word she used) SERVING alone?
I mean she was fed up of doing it all by herself! Then, Martha had the nerve to tell the Messiah what to do!! Oh yes, Martha was upset. I can imagine her in the kitchen stirring spaghetti, like “Oh, I’m tired of this mess, I’m about to tell on her.” She told Jesus “Tell her to help me.”
Jesus didn’t do that… He said to her, “Martha, Martha, you are WORRIED and BOTHERED about so many things, but really only a few things are necessary, really only one for Mary has chosen the good part which should not be taken away from her."
Well, talk about a humility check! We can only wonder what happened next, but that was enough for me, and I hope it is enough for you. Jesus has said a few things are necessary, really only one!
I’d like to ask, which are you choosing? Are you sitting at His feet, listening. Or, have you been working and serving, worried and bothered, about many things. Good, grief did I ball and emptied half a box of tissues when I was convicted over this.
Sister, it doesn’t matter how much stuff we do, even in the name of “Christ.” What I didn’t mention was, Scripture also said Martha was “distracted with all her preparations.” Do you know even Christian activity, done with a good heart, can be distracting? Jesus, the Son of God, was at Martha’s house, and she was busy away, probably making bread.
We have to repent if this has happened to us. If we are distracted, even by godly stuff, without being focused on God Himself, we are in a dangerous place. We must be humbled! Are you distracted? Do you feel like you HAVE to do things for God? You just gotta, right? It is an 'ought to,' instead of a 'get to.'
What is distracting you? Is it school? Are you consumed with social media?
Is it the TV, constantly?
Are you not seeking God because of your many friendships?
Has your boyfriend or husband become an idol?
Is it Bible Art and creating?
Is work becoming the center, instead of Christ?
Yes, all these things may be needed and not even evil in itself, but we must be careful not to let them become distractions to us in our walk with the Lord.
NO, BUT REALLY!
I want us to examine our hearts on this one, with a willingness to see sin. Many of us ask God to examine our hearts, with our hands protecting our hearts, not really wanting to see the fault. Let's really come with opened hearts.
Are we doing what we are doing because we love Him and want to make Him known? Or, are there other reasons? And let's be specific about those reasons!
Are we distracted even by good Christian things?
And, what is our resolution?
1. We repent with no guilt (walking in forgiveness).
When we see sin, the enemy often times will throw condemnation on us, but we must remember the blood of Christ is enough to cover all of our sins… even this one.
2. Then, let's sit at Jesus’ feet like Mary, listening to His Word… The Bible!
This is challenging, but God will give us the grace to obey and love Him, with all of our hearts, minds, and strength.
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Praise God from whom all blessings flow!