Working towards something that God places on our hearts is so rewarding, but the love God has for us far exceeds any compensation for whatever it is that we are doing. Being "A Work in Progress", just by description, means that we must work. When we do something for the Lord it can be fruitful, but in order for it to be fulfilling we must instead work with God. Working with God is more than simply asking Him for guidance, answers, and help. It is more than simply seeking His hand in order for ours to be established. The love He has for us is greater than He has for our work. This revelation has and continues to help me move forward in the things that He has for me to do.
For most of my adult life I chased a dream and tried to live a godly life along the way. When I finally made the decision to be a person pursuing God's plans for my life I was excited to get to work. I wanted to jump in and apply all the gifts that God had given in me for His Kingdom, but I first needed to understand His work program. You see, being a "work-a-holic" did not change just because my motivation for the work did. God knew that, although my heart had been transformed, my habits and understanding needed to be as well. So, before God gave me a big assignment to work, He first gave me a prayer.
“For this reason I bow my knees to the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, from whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named, that He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with might through His Spirit in the inner man, that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; that you, being rooted and grounded in love may be able to comprehend with all the saints wheat is the width and length and depth and height – to know the love of Christ which passes knowledge; that you may be filled with all the fullness of God. Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us, to Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen.”
(Eph. 3:14-21 NKJV)
Everyday, many times - multiple times a day - I spoke, read, and meditated on this prayer. I even typed this prayer out and printed it on a label sticking it to 3X5 cards, which I then put in my car, office, bathroom, and in my planner. God gave me a plan to continue in this prayer for a year. Throughout that time I still wanted to begin a project, help out in leadership at my church, do something substantial with God, not realizing that I was doing just that through His Word. Along the way I served Him, helping out the leaders of our church, but my real work was developing my heart for His work - our relationship.
After that year God gave me writing projects, ministry assignments, and leadership positions, because I had developed a deeper understanding of His love for me apart from the work itself. Through His Word I had been transformed from a burn out waiting to happen into a person who could not only progress but continue to move forward with joy, balance, and fulfillment. Thank God that He cares more about me than what I can do for Him.
Recently, God has been leading me to many Scriptures of the love He has for me. Maybe this is because I have just finished a large project, or maybe because I am right in the middle of a school year, or maybe because I am balancing some new little assignments in my current schedule, or maybe.....it is simply because He loves me. He wants me know that His love for me begins far before the work should.
As a Christian, getting beyond working for the love of God is the difference between working for Him or with Him. Knowing that God loves us, more than the work, helps us move forward, with Him. This is when our work will begin to progress.