Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Now Finish the Work...

          A sink full of dirty dishes can try to cast a burden, but what if it is not full - just never empty? Circumstances in our lives should never dictate our attitude, but there are circumstances we can take control over which helps us walk in peace as we progress.

          In my kitchen my dirty dishes have been known to call out for me to clean them, sometimes out of guilt and some times out of responsibility. Now you realize I am speaking figuratively...it would be a whole different article if I was hearing instructions from my plates and cups. However, not too long ago God used three dirty spatulas laying at the bottom of my kitchen sink to teach me a lesson in the importance of finishing what I begin.

          Now, there are more important things in our lives than dirty dishes. Sometimes we DO need to pass them by so that we can attend to priority areas. But there is a point when we need to jump in and get the job done...not just make it better.  A while back, I developed a habit of every time that I would wash the dishes I would leave a few dirty ones until next time.  This may not seem like a big deal, but after a tiny bit of dread started creeping in every time I went into my kitchen I began to take notice. This subtle annoyance of always having work to do in my kitchen, began to steal my peace and I had not even realized it until God pointed out that..."Now finish the work" means dishes too."

          One of my favorite Scriptures is found in the second letter Paul wrote to the church of Corinth. Paul was writing to the Corinthians about the importance of sowing gifts, but this Verse has ministered to me for years in another way...and on that particular day it was manifested in a sink full of an incomplete chore.

"Now finish the work, so that your eager willingness to do it may be matched by your completion of it, according to your means,"
(2 Cor. 8:11 NIV)

          "Now finish the work...” are four power packed words, with many principals of which to glean wisdom,  but I will simply stick to this particular lesson.  On that day when I looked down at those three dirty spatulas, I was challenged to finish what I had started.  I realized that by putting this chore in a continual state of work I had created an environment that allowed peace to easily be stolen from my everyday life.
          While it is true that "the work" Paul is writing about is regarding gifts, talents, and our destinies - so how does this Verse relate to our day to day work?  Often it is the little things that try to "drain" us, pun intended, from enjoying our journey towards the destination God has planned for us.

          Shortly after God led me to this powerful Verse on finishing the work He connected it to another Scripture that gave me a balanced understanding as “A Work in Progress”.

"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future," 
(Jer. 29:11 NIV)

Whether it is completing a household task or a project given through a call on our lives, God knows that the plans He has for us are to help us not to hurt us. If we only begin things and never finish anything the moments of our lives slip away into an unfulfilled existence. 

          Has God called me to do the dishes?  Well, He has blessed me with a wonderful family who all do their part as we take care of the things that we own. Therefore completing the dish chore positions our family to receive future blessings and at the same time keeps peace in our home.

          Not only with dishes, but in multiple areas of our lives we are challenged to "Now finish the work" that is before us.  As “A Work in Progress” we are committed to not only doing the work but moving forward through the doing of it.  Finishing what we start helps us get from where we are to where God knows that we can be – one empty sink at a time. 

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