“But life is worth nothing unless I use it for doing the work assigned me by the Lord Jesus -- the work of telling others the Good News about God's mighty kindness and love” -- Acts 20:24 (The Living Bible).
What is the work assigned to you by the Lord Jesus? What is the thing that you simply must do? One way you can tell is by how empty everything else is apart from it.
There are many things I enjoy doing, but none of them provide me with the depth of personal fulfillment that comes from doing what I've been called to do by Christ. For example, I love to play golf, but it is an empty pursuit and worth nothing at all -- unless it holds a subservient role to my higher purpose.
What is the work assigned to me by the Lord Jesus?
In Paul's case, it was "telling others the Good News about God's mighty kindness and love.” Perhaps we each could say a similar thing, although there is a specific emphasis on how we each individually go about fulfilling our assignments. In my case, the under-lying, driving passion of all that I do is "helping others experience God's presence." And for me, life is worth nothing unless I use it for doing exactly this.
Every sermon I preach, every book I write, every blog I post, every twitter I twit, and every conversation I have -- each and every one is yet another attempt on my part to help others experience God's presence.
There is a beautiful poem called Indwelt, by Beatrice Clelland, which sums up what I hope anyone could say about me.
Not merely in the words you say,
Not only in the deeds confessed,
But in the most unconscious way,
Is Christ expressed.
Is it a beatific smile,
A holy light upon the brow?
Oh no, I felt His presence while
You laughed just now.
For me, 'twas not the truth you taught,
To you so clear to me so dim,
But when you came to me you brought
A sense of Him.
And from your life He beckons me,
And from your heart His love is shed,
Till I lose sight of you and see
The Christ instead.
Life is worth nothing unless I use it for doing the work assigned me by the Lord Jesus -- the work of helping other experience God's presence.