Well Done

I’ve been thinking lately about the parable of the talents in Matthew 25:14-30, specifically verse 21 where the master says to the slave, “Well done, good and faithful servant … enter into the joy of your master.”

Most of us who have been believers for awhile long to hear Jesus speak those words to us:  “Well done, good and faithful servant … enter into the joy of your Master.”  Although there are no tears in heaven, I have trouble imagining hearing those words and not welling up.  To know that He sees us, and that our actions have influenced eternity and brought pleasure to Him … is there anything more satisfying?

But I’m rethinking that scene in heaven just a bit.  Oh, I still believe that God wants us to be good stewards of what He’s given us, and I believe that He will reward those who follow Him faithfully.  But I’ve also been thinking about the reality of heaven.  And I wonder …

… when my eyes are open to see an explosion of colors that I had never imagined before, and I am in view of the throne that is surrounded by a rainbow like an emerald in appearance, and I am faced with creatures unlike any I ever encountered on earth, and

… when the silence of death gives way to the sounds and peals of thunder at the throne of God, and I hear elders, living creatures, and myriads of myriads and thousands of thousands of angels saying with a loud voice, “Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power and riches and wisdom and might and honor and glory and blessing,” and

… when I see that the response of all who have been in the presence of the Mighty One before me is to fall on their faces in extravagant and passionate worship, and

… when my mind is opened to understand life’s mysteries, and I see how many times I was protected from calamity, how my “good days” were divine shielding from the raging forces of hell, how what I thought were unanswered prayers were actually the most merciful blessings of God, and how God intricately wove His plan for my life among the threads of billions of others whom He loved uniquely and fervently, and

… when my heart feels it will burst with gratitude, awe, and wonder because of the selfless love of the One who rescued me so that I could have eternal life,

I wonder,

… what will I say?

… will I be waiting for words of affirmation from my Master?

I think it is possible, instead, that I will follow the example of the elders, the creatures, and the myriads of myriads of people, and I will fall on my face.  And when I see the intricacies of His plan, after I have shouted “Holy!” and “Worthy!”, perhaps I will look at my Savior, as wondrous praise erupts from my heart, and say,

 

… “Well done, Jesus!  Well done, You faithful servant of the Most High God!”

 

And I will gladly take my place among the heavenly throng and offer Father, Son, and Holy Spirit my wholehearted devotion for all eternity.

 

“He has done all things well; He makes even the deaf to hear and the mute to speak.” – Mark 7:37

 

Advertisements

When God Ran

I was running the other day and this song came up on my Pandora station:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=asU6FXnHWus

Actually it was a newer version, but the link above is the Benny Hester version of “When God Ran” that I first heard back when I was in college.  It was my senior year and I was in the living room of my apartment with my roommates.  They had turned on the radio and found K-Love, way in its early days before it was a nationwide “thing”.  The signal was not great – Christian music was hard to come by in Berkeley in those days – but it was enough to get the message.  The picture of the prodigal son sheepishly returning home as his father ran to embrace him was burned in my memory.  I often turned on the radio after that hoping that they would play the song again.  I have only heard it a handful of times but 25 years later I still remember it.

God is not soft on sin.  He doesn’t smile and shake His head with a sigh and say “Oh, well, kids today, you know” when we turn our hearts away from Him.  He paid a high price to purchase our redemption.

But Romans 2:4 says that the kindness of God leads us to repentance.  I can’t tell you the number of times when I have known I was guilty and needed to repent and I received an unexpected check in the mail or a message with good news … and my heart was reminded that God still loved me.  His conviction brought me to a point of confession (agreeing with Him that my sin was wrong), but His kindness led me to repentance (turning away from my sin and wholeheartedly towards Him).