And He said to them, let us go elsewhere into the next towns, that I may preach there also, for to this end came I forth, Mark 1:38.
Jesus was a worker. He got up early (Mark 1:35), and sometimes even missed a meal because He was so busy working, (John 4:31-34.) He was always ready to move on to the next place, the next group of people. His philosophy seemed to be, “There’s not much time so let’s keep working.” Why? Because He understood His mission: this is why I came.
That is not today’s philosophy. Instead I hear, “There’s plenty of time to work, so let’s go play,” or “Life is short, so have fun.” Maybe we don’t work like we ought to because we don’t know our mission like He did.
In our culture everything is about me--whether I am happy, whether I get to do the things I want to do, whether I feel fulfilled--and the things that we find fulfilling are usually money, fame, and pleasure.
We are simply too rich. Ask a Christian in a third world country what his mission in life is and you are far more likely to get the right answer. He scarcely has a roof over his head, much less one over a couple of thousand square feet of luxury home, and his leaks! His existence is day to day, hand to mouth, and he works longer hours for a miniscule fraction of your pay—if indeed he has a job—than you think is humane. Yet all his spare time is used studying his Bible, attending Bible classes, and speaking to his neighbors. We can hardly find the time to simply sit in the pews, even though we probably work more than a dozen hours less a week than that man.
We seem to be teaching our children the same mindless egocentrism. They “deserve” to have fun. They are so busy with earthly pursuits every minute of the day that they don’t even spend thirty minutes a week filling out a Bible lesson—and their parents are too busy to check to see if they did, or sigh with regret and say, “But they needed a little down time.” Can’t their down time involve something spiritual? Can’t we teach them how satisfying it is to take meals to the poor, to visit the elderly and the sick, to do their yard work and run errands for them? If they are not learning it now, when will they? If they are not learning it from you, then who will teach them?
Four times the Hebrew writer says Jesus “sat down,” 1:3; 8:1; 10:12; 12:2. Jesus did not sit down because He was tired and needed to rest, or because he needed some time to Himself. He sat down because He had accomplished His task. He told His disciples, We must work the works of Him that sent me, while it is day; the night comes when no man can work, John 9:4.
My mission is not about me. My mission is about Jesus and His family—serving Him by serving them; serving Him by serving my friends and neighbors. When you know what your mission is, you are more likely to keep working at it, and less likely to worry about whether you are having enough fun. Those things become your “fun;” they become your fulfilling moments; they become your treasure stored in Heaven.
Accomplishing those things will finally give you the opportunity to sit down and rest.
He who overcomes, I will give to Him to sit down with me in my throne, as I also overcame and sat down with my Father in His throne, Rev 3:21.