Called to Serve


God can make a difference through our lives—not because of our greatness but because of His grace.

"We have here only five loaves of bread and two fish." they answered. "Bring them here to me," he [Jesus] said. Matthew 14:17–18, NIV

Writing is usually lonely work. I sit in my little office, sighing over my two small fish and rather dry loaves of barley bread, feeling the futility of the offering in the face of the world’s needs. I suspect people in other careers struggle with the same discouragement. Most of the time we do the work in front of us, love the people around us, stay alert for tiny ways to help someone, sing an off-key melody of praise…and wonder if we are making a difference.

Often God doesn’t let us see the results of our work. All the better. We walk by faith. Called to serve—not necessary to succeed. God is producing fruit, fruit that will last but is often growing in secret. It’s not for us to tally. I like to imagine there will be a time in heaven when God will page through a scrapbook with us, and He will trace the impact of some of the simple acts of love we offered, remind us of the hours of closet prayer we weren’t sure He heard, and show us the second act of the story. I would love to hear how He breathed power and life into a word, a prayer, a gift—and multiplied it until baskets were needed for the leftovers.

God can make a difference through our lives. Not because of our greatness—relying on our own resources would lead to stinky fish and moldy  bread—but because of His ability to multiply. He imbues our simple lives with His grace so that we can tear off a piece of barley loaf and pass it to a  friend. And they can break the bread and hand it to another. And somehow it doesn’t run out. 

FAITH STEP: Can you sing Him a chorus of praise today, even if your throat is hoarse from tears? Can you listen to a friend, even if you can’t solve her prob- lem? Can you pray one more time over a need, even when it seems your prayers bounce off the ceiling? Can you do the simple act of love that no one sees and no one appreciates? Bring what you have to Jesus, no matter how inadequate it seems. Jesus may be planning a miracle.

Contributed by Sharon Hinck




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