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What Can I Do For God?

August 15, 2006

“Most of us would like to do something special in life, something to distinguish us. We suppose that we desire it for God’s sake, but more likely we are discontent with ordinary life and crave special privileges. When Israel asked if they should offer some spectacular sacrifice–thousands of rams, ten thousand “rivers of oil,” a firstborn child–the answer was, “He has showed you, O man, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God” (Micah 6:8, RSV).

There is nothing conspicuous about those requirements. It is not a “special” service for which one would be likely to be decorated or even particularly remembered. But it is worth more to God than any sacrifice.

Lord, deliver me from the delusion of imagining that my desire is to serve You, when my real desire is the distinction of serving in some way which others admire.”

Elisabeth Elliot, Lamp for My Feet

This quote was particularly powerful, as I’ve just come back from the WorshipGod06 conference. At this conference, we were once again reminded that God is the giver of our gifts, and the focus of our gifts should be to give Him glory. However, I often tend to view certain gifts as more “special” than others. We often long for “special” service, and unfortunately, often the attraction is not so much the service but the distinction of a particular service.

At the conference I was convicted, confessed my sin, and have a renewed passion for using my gifts to serve God, whether it’s stewarding my voice as an instrument for the worship team or joyfully doing a mundane task in my home. Neither is more special than the other. At one point I was particularly overwhelmed by how sinful even my desires for serving God can be. I felt like just giving up because my offering was so poor. But how thankful I was that the very next session I attended was Aron Osborne’s Eagerly Desiring Spiritual Gifts. Even though the focus of this talk was focused on the spiritual gift of prophesy, I was encouraged as he emphasized faithful preparation no matter what the gift, and to continue to “earnestly desire” to pursue our gifts–despite sin–to build up the church (1 Cor. 14:1). This session was so encouraging to me, and the funny thing was, I had been mistakenly registered for it. It was not the session I’d picked for that time slot, and I’d wanted to change it, but ran out of time.

Just goes to show that with God, there are no mistakes.

Lord, I pray I’d desire no “distinction of serving in some way which others admire” but seek to serve in ways You admire: that I’d do justice, love kindness, and to walk humbly with You in all that I do.

7 Comments leave one →
  1. August 15, 2006 1:16 pm

    a great reminder Danielle! Too funny that you mistakenly registered for that session. Turned out to be so beneficial though!
    I love the quote too. Thanks for sharing this, as I think about myslef and my own life and relationship with Christ it is so good to be reminded we are here to seek, glorify, serve, and satisfy Christ alone.

  2. August 15, 2006 1:22 pm

    Thanks for posting this. I really needed this reminder because I don’t always use my gifts with an attitude to serve God, but rather to gain self-satisfaction or recognition.

    I love how the Lord changed your session. Definitely no mistake!

  3. August 15, 2006 1:31 pm

    Great quote!!! How neat that your favorite session was the one you were in by mistake. That is too cool. I love it when stuff like that happens

  4. August 15, 2006 2:35 pm

    This is so encouraging, Danielle! Thank you for sharing. A friend and I were just discussing this issue this weekend. She has given up performing because she is very talented and finds herself enjoying the personal glory too much. I encouraged her that perhaps the answer was not for her to give up those gifts forever—because God gave them to her to use for His glory—but maybe constant prayer for humility and seeking accountability, while still using the gift, is a better solution.

  5. August 15, 2006 2:41 pm

    Whoa. Leave it to Elisabeth Eliot to say it like it is. I have been pondering this very things lately. In fact, posted on it today. When God said “Let my people go” the next part of the sentence is “that they might serve me in the wilderness.” Those slaves probably wanted to ditch the mortar and move up into the palace. Instead, God took them to the wilderness. Bet they too felt registered for the wrong seminar!

  6. August 15, 2006 3:53 pm

    Danielle, thanks for sharing this. What a great reminder. Can’t wait to hear more from the conference.

  7. Christina permalink
    August 15, 2006 4:41 pm

    What a great reminder. I was praying for God to give me a lift today in cleaning the house, teaching the kids, and caring for a baby. Thank you for the encouragement that even this unnoticed service can bring him glory. I’m looking forward to hearing more about the conference. Thanks for sharing.


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