What makes you feel that your efforts are valuable? Their big size? Getting public acknowledgement? Seeing the results?
When do you feel that you are serving Christ? Does it have to be a role or position? Must it be done for the church or mission group? Do you value up front rather than behind the scenes?
In contrast to the world, Jesus valued the small and the insignificant, which surprised those around him.
A few things that Jesus valued came to my mind:
- a good meal with friends
- a widow’s small offering
- the poor and the sick
- fasting and praying in secret
- a humble tax collector
- a single lost sheep
- faith as small as a mustard seed
- Mary of Bethany sitting at his feet and learning from him
- a sinful woman kissing and anointing his feet with perfume
- a good fishing trip
- little children
I think of Jesus’s words describing his method of judging people when he returns:
‘For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick and you visited me, I was in prison and you came to me.’
Then the righteous will answer him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you drink? And when did we see you a stranger and welcome you, or naked and clothe you? And when did we see you sick or in prison and visit you?’
And the King will answer them, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.’ (Matt. 25:35-40).
The world would rank all of these actions as small and ordinary, but if they are valuable to Jesus, they should be to us, also.
In our fast-paced and success-driven culture, it is easy to get caught up in the thinking that big, successful, public, and attention-getting is all that matters. Jesus says otherwise. It is time for us to realize that all we do matters. It is all ministry. It all counts for God.