Thursday, February 11, 2010

Once More Unto The Breach (of Glory)

John 12:24-28
24I tell you the truth, unless a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains only a single seed. But if it dies, it produces many seeds. 25The man who loves his life will lose it, while the man who hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life. 26Whoever serves me must follow me; and where I am, my servant also will be. My Father will honor the one who serves me.

27"Now my heart is troubled, and what shall I say? 'Father, save me from this hour'? No, it was for this very reason I came to this hour. 28Father, glorify your name!"
Been meditating the past two days on these words. Somehow feel that God may be calling me to stay and ponder on these words for a while.

One thing that I learnt while meditating on this passage is that... Jesus really did feel troubled at times. Even though He said, "Peace I leave with you... Do not let your hearts be troubled, and do not be afraid," He has indeed felt troubled before.

Are there times that you have felt troubled about what is to come, especially when serving God in ministry? Have there been times that you didn't want to go for caregroup because you simply felt you were giving so much to the point of exhaustion? Or not wanting to go for yet another early-morning rehearsal on a Saturday morning?

Mum: "Wake up, son! It's time to go to church."

Son: "Mum! I really don't feel like going to church today. I'm so tired, having to say hello to people day in day out, ask them how they are, serve in God knows how many ministries... and not even having time to just relax. Today's a SUNDAY! It's supposed to be a day of rest! Mum, just let me sleep in today... pleeeeeeeease?"

Mum: "But, son, you have to go! You're the PASTOR!"

Maybe you may have to do something today that really is very fearful for you. You might need to take a stand and speak out for something you know is true. Or you might need to speak the truth in love to a recalcitrant sheep. Or you feel super-inadequate and even useless for the ministry God has put you in.

Then let us take heart from Jesus' response after his confession:
"Now my heart is troubled, and what shall I say? 'Father, save me from this hour'? No, it was for this very reason I came to this hour.
He chose not to say, "Father, save me! I don't want to have to go through this moment..." No, He set his face firmly unto what he knew he had to do, even in death's cruel face. And he didn't just see it as something to be endured, something to go through, a gauntlet to be run through as fast as possible.

No. He said,
"It was for this very reason that I came to this hour. FATHER, GLORIFY YOUR NAME!"
And we heard the thunderous voice of the Father resound in reply:
"I have glorified it, and will glorify it again."
I hear Jesus' hungry cry to bring glory to his Father, and his resolute and absolute determination to live for the Father's glory - no matter what circumstances he may be in. He purposely went through life purposefully. He was fully intentional in what he did.

So I am thinking now... perhaps, from Jesus' example, it would be better that we don't so much pray that these difficult times be taken away from us, but rather, that we pray that we will be intentional in living for the Father's glory. To settle for nothing less than glorifying the Father in whatever we say and do - especially during these trying times.

May we learn to see God's purpose and live to bring Him glory in every moment!

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