Originally published Friday, 20 March 2015.
Sometimes I feel like I’m grasping at straws, like I’ve run around trying to seize the day and make the most of it and live life to the fullest and every other cliched phrase ever spoken… but all I have to show for it are a few measly straws.
“Buck up,” I tell myself. “Try harder. Wake up earlier. Stay up longer. Do more.” The whip snaps at my heels as I run to keep up the pace of the never-ending demands weighing down my shoulders. The ego is a terrible task-master.
But who’s to say that God calls us to productivity? From where do we get the impression that more is better?
What if God wants us to gather straws instead of drive a combine through the field? After all, Ruth’s bundles looked nothing like the laborers in front of her, but she was commended for her faithfulness, her hard work despite the results. Because the truth is that God often provides not in spite of the straws but through the measly straws we gather.
God calls us to faithfulness not productivity; between them stands an infinity of grace.
After all, the Master in Jesus’ parables congratulates all who were faithful with their duties, regardless of whether their investment returned a 100% profit or a 500% profit. He’s less concerned with the bottom line and more focused on our journey to the finish line. There is honor and beauty in picking up one straw at a time. Slow down with me, dear friend, and enjoy the inefficient wonder that is God’s provision for us.
On days when you collapse in bed, closing your eyes against the hairballs on the carpet and the piles of laundry all over the floor, on those days when you feel like you’ve accomplished nothing, look into His eyes and hear Him say, “I have called you. You are mine. Your worth is not measured by what you produce but by your faithfulness to My calling. Simply be still and accept this gift of grace. Yes, even with dirty toilets and dishes piled in the sink, I’m still with you. And you’re going to be ok.”
God is not concerned with your bottom line–He’s focused on your journey to the finish line.
Don’t look at the picture-perfect woman who has it all together. Don’t compare your straws to her bundles. Simply gather where He has placed you, pick up one straw at a time, and marvel at His grace in the mayhem. He is pleased with you.
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