It is easier to serve or work for God without a vision and without a call, because then you are not bothered by what He requires. Common sense, covered with a layer of Christian emotion, becomes your guide. You may be more prosperous and successful from the word’s perspective, and will have more leisure time, if you never acknowledge the call of God. But once you receive a commission from Jesus Christ, the memory of what God asks of you will always be there to prod you on to do His will. You will no longer be able to work for Him on the basis of common sense.
What do I count in my life as “dear to myself”? If I have not been seized by Jesus Christ and have not surrendered myself to Him, I will consider the time I decide to give God and my own ideas of service as “dear to myself.” But Paul said he considered his life dear so that he might fulfill the ministry he had received, and he refused to put his energy on anything else. This verse shows an almost noble annoyance by Paul at being asked to consider himself. He was absolutely indifferent to any consideration other than that of fulfilling the ministry he had received. Our ordinary and reasonable service to God may actually compete against our total surrender to Him. Our reasonable work is based on the following argument which we say to ourselves, ‘Remember how useful you are here, and think how much value you would be in that particular type of work.’ That attitude chooses our own judgment, instead of Jesus Christ, to be our guide as to where we should go and where we could be used the most. Never consider whether or not you are of use–but always consider that ‘you are not your own’ (1 Corinthians 6:19). You are His.
This one is almost overwhelming. It comes with the piecing question of Jesus–How much do you love me? Enough to give me some? Enough to give me most? Enough to give me all?
Jesus is not here for us, we are here for him. He is not (although he is often treated this way) a nice addition to our lives so that we can be happy and saved. He IS so that we may have new life. Am I still trying to fit him in the life that I had, or am I living the new life I have been given, the life called, the life equipped, the life full, the life to bring his kingdom here. Today.
I must listen. Please… ears to hear.