I was thinking today how it is good to think in terms of 'a career'. At some point we must make the transition of thinking moment to moment and start thinking long term. This applies to work but it also applies to our spiritual lives.
"Thus it is written, 'The first man Adam became a living being'; the last Adam became a life-giving spirit. But it is not the spiritual that is first but the natural, and then the spiritual." - 1 Corinthians 15:45-46 ESV
"For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive." - 1 Corinthians 15:22 KJV
Adam lived but in the end he was known for his failure. Just being alive will not be praiseworthy when we stand before God. Jesus had a calling. He was and Is a quickener. God is very happy with His Son and in Him we find our calling. We have a life through Adam but Jesus gives us a ministry.
"Therefore, brothers, be all the more diligent to confirm your calling and election" - 2 Peter 1:10a ESV
We don't have any say in our election. Nor do we have much say in some of the circumstances we find ourselves in. It is good to be sure about why we are in our present circumstances. We are here because God has us here. We are here as called ones. Circumstances are not just things to survive they are stepping stones on a career of faith.
"Therefore do not pronounce judgment before the time, before the Lord comes, who will bring to light the things now hidden in darkness and will disclose the purposes of the heart. Then each one will receive his commendation from God." - 1 Corinthians 4:5 ESV
Everyone who believes will have praise from God. Anyone who continues believing will have a long list of things for God to commend. It is not our works but our life of faith that is given as a gift from God.
"Why do you pass judgment on your brother? Or you, why do you despise your brother? For we will all stand before the judgment seat of God;" - Romans 14:10 ESV
God's judgement seat is a reward seat. God will reward us and he will reward those around us who have believed. I want to cheer for you when you stand there and not be ashamed because I operated as a judge when I should have been a friend.
"For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may receive what is due for what he has done in the body, whether good or evil." - 2 Corinthians 5:10 ESV
Good here is Agathos (Strong's G18) which means agreeably, useful or lovely and evil is Phaulos (Strong's G5337) which speaks of easy, worthless or something of no account. A believers judgement will be about useful and not useful.
God is going to deal with our career on that day. It won't be about our self life it will be about our career. A professional makes career oriented decisions. Good or bad is useful or not useful. That is how I want to think. What will be useful when I eventually stand before God?
Men are often not known for the little things they do day to day. History records important moments when people made crucial decisions. Those decisions are often not easy ones. A career of faith prepares us to make useful choices in those crucial moments.
It gives new meaning to the common question, 'So what do you do for a living?'
We can say with confidence that we are more than just alive. Believers have careers of faith.