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my worst fear

To be forgotten.

…… by God.   I fear facing the end of my life not seeing my life as fruitful as I would have liked.   It’s a hard balance to achieve.   One part of me knows how to MAKE things happen.   I can easily step out on my own and attain all that I put my mind to.  I’m just that kind of person.  I can promote myself.  I even have a book: Shameless Self Promotions…… sad I know.

But right now I’m choosing to stay on the other end of the scale: to wait.  I’ve mentioned my “love” of waiting in a past blog (called: I hate waiting).   I’m really not a fan.   I find it annoying and… passive.   I’m much more assertive, even aggressive at times.   But for the amount of time I have manipulated things for my favor, I feel this change of focus is healthy for me.  I’m not saying I’m manipulative.  I’ve been accused of that – and wow, that was hurtful.  I’m just a go-getter who needed to be bridled.

Well, here I am with the bridle in place.  Sitting here….. waiting….  But I’m finding some cool life-nuggets in this.  First of all, it’s refreshing to not run ahead of God.   I’ve done that numerous times in the past.  What does God do when I get in that mode? He watches me for awhile.  Then just before I royally mess everything up, He slams the door in my face.  At first, I feel like He does this because He’s upset at me, or He doesn’t believe in me.  But, no.  He does this because He loves me and knows what I need.

But that’s where the fear comes in.  If I wait, will God keep me waiting for the rest of my life?  Will I face my last day wondering what on earth this life was for?  Will I see any fruit?  Will He allow me to venture out into the passions He gave me?  Will I continue to see others live their dreams and see success in their endeavors?

Does God play favorites??

Maybe He does?  I’m not sure, but I do know this: he allows the sun to shine on the righteous AND the unrighteous (Matthew 5:45)   We see some succeed greatly in the Bible and some who didn’t appear to be as effective – yet they were favored by God and even chosen to start a chain of events that would change the course of humankind.

“….. each one of these people of faith died not yet having in hand waht was promised but believing.  How did they do it?  They saw it way off in the distance, waved their greeting, and accepted the fact that they wee transients in this world.  People who live this way make it plain that they are looking for their true home.  If they were homesick for the old country, they would have gone back any time they wanted.  But they were after a far better country than that – heaven country.  You can see why God is so proud of them, and has a City waiting for them”

(Hebrews 11:13-16)

I don’t think the focus is on whether God plays favorites or not – its on how we measure success.   And even further…… who is this life about?

How CAN we possibly measure success?   Is it possible to put fruitfulness on a scale and see its weight?  How can our mortal eyes by any means see our actions effect eternity.

We can’t.

We live in a world where there are constant measurements of achievement: test results, promotions, sales quotas, church attendance, registration numbers…. the list goes on.  We so often view our ability on the results of such measurements.

But God’s measurement is very different.   Eyes can’t see it and minds can’t figure it out.   I’ll never forget visiting a church up in Fort Resolution, Northwest Territories when I was a teen.   Our youth group headed up there on a summer missions trip.  There we met Elizabeth, the pastor of the church.   Every Sunday she would have a message prepared to speak.  She would show up faithful each Sunday morning to find…. no one.  Not one person.  Yet she continued this EVERY week.   After meeting the people of Fort Resolution, I can’t imagine how she continued to stay faithful.  It was a small town where everyone seemed drunk most of the time.    I can imagine Elizabeth attending a conference with fellow pastors asking; “So how many people attend your church?” (a standard, shallow question)  How would a question like that make her feel?   Did the number of people attending change her effectiveness in eternity?

It’s not about the measurement.

Elizabeth’s reward is great in heaven.   Not because of how many, or how little, but because she got it right.  It wasn’t about the quantity; it was about her obedience.   And she passed that test exceedingly.

The problem is when God seems to have forgotten us we can either become apathetic – just living life with no kingdom-vision OR we can choose to make our own path.   Both take us away from the main thing:

simple obedience.  daily obedience.   obedience that commits – even when it hurts.   When we do THAT, then not only do we go past the “measurement” but we remember that life is about HIM and not about us.

The call of God is when you could do anything in the world you want but choose to do what God asks you to do.” – Bill Dixon, The Mustard Seed, Calgary

If I can do that, then there is no fear that my life was a waste.

Categories: a broken journey
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