Following the first service on September 1, I felt the conviction of the Lord. It was this quiet whisper, but consistent none the less. It was this… “Dave, you did not bring your best there.”
I don’t know if it was the 3 day weekend, or a late Saturday night of working on other church stuff, or already looking ahead to the next Sunday, but in the midst of preaching during first service, I just felt bland. Yes, I was there, and I was communicating, and I was working through the content the Lord had put on my heart, but I question if I was bringing my all to the table.
Have you ever left work and thought, I just went through the motions there. I was just waiting for the clock to hit closing time, and I was out of there. Have you ever come home from a long day of work, where you did bring your best, but then walked in and just gave leftovers to your spouse or children? Have you ever served as a volunteer, more focused on just clicking it off the to-do list or waiting for it to be done? Students, have you ever gone into a performance, a game, or a test, and did just enough to get by rather than pursuing excellence?
I think if we’re honest, we all have at different times like that. I have been guilty of not bringing my best at times in probably every role I have. From a husband, father, pastor, coach, friend…you name it.
We’re tempted to bring our leftovers, rather than our best. In the Old Testament, the Lord continued to tell the Israelites to bring their best. Bring your best fruit, bring your best crops, bring your best lamb, etc. Don’t bring me the leftovers, bring me the best. Because in the end, our God is worthy of our best. In the book of Colossians, we’re challenged that all we do is done for Jesus.
Colossians 3:23 says, Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters.
Colossians 3:17 says, And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.
So all we do and say is worship. How we work is worship, how we serve is worship, how we love our spouses and our children is worship, how we love others is worship, how we give financially is worship, and on and on it goes.
Crosspointers, as followers of Jesus, we must bring our best. In no way, am I implying or saying that the effectiveness of God is based upon us and our efforts. If that were the case, the weight and burden of that would be crushing to us. We must not forget that God can and will use whatever means necessary to communicate His message. He even used one of these…
One of my favorite verses in respect to preaching is Isaiah 55:11 which says, “so is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it.”
I am beginning to write these two phrases at the top of my messages each week…’Bring your best’ and ‘It never returns void.’ Reminders to my heart that I am called to bring my best for His glory, and ultimately I am trusting in God’s power to change hearts through the Word.
What we must not forget or neglect is to bring our best in all that we do. We don’t bring our best to make much of us, but of Him. Not for our glory, but for His.
Crosspoint, my prayer is that as a church we would be marked by bringing our best.
Our best in our work and schools.
Our best in our marriages.
Our best in our friendships.
Our best in our ministries that we serve in.
Our best in our giving.
Our best in…
Bring your best Crosspoint!