Several years ago, God used me regularly and quite often as a soloist at my church. I loved singing His messages and His praises. He blessed and anointed each assignment that He gave me. Our servant/master relationship was so tight that He always had me prepared even at a last minute’s notice…and more times than not, the songs I prepared supported the Pastor’s sermon perfectly.
I was humbled by God’s favor and even,at times, somewhat uncomfortable because I knew other soloists were eager to get their fair share of ministering opportunities on the platform. And, as I suspected, a friend kindly let me know her thoughts about the seemingly “out of balance” dispersal of singing appointments. In essence, she begrudged my frequent assignments of singing up front. But God knew what we didn’t know and enjoyed hearing and watching me as I enjoyed singing His praise. At the time, little did my friend or I know that, with my upcoming move across the country to our new church, my season of ministry as a church soloist would come to a screeching halt. Even today, still, only God knows why.
Recently, I found myself on the opposite side of that coin. I realized, by God’s great grace, that I was disgruntled at the way a church leader was using his new pulpit position as an opportunity for dynamic, dramatic expression (Luke 6:37). It seemed to me that in giving his messages, which were blessed and anointed by the way, he was barring all holds and was playing to a captive audience. And to make the pill harder to swallow, he was obviously, blatantly enjoying himself therein. I thought to myself, and inadvertently to God, “That is pretty nervy.” But, again, little did I, or any of us, know that within just three short years this leader would find himself instantly entertaining the King of Kings, Himself. I begrudged, for a time, this leader of taking the opportunities afforded him by God to live his last years to the very fullest of his personality…and to enjoy doing it. God delighted to see our leader enjoy himself in his last years just as He had delighted in listening to me sing my blessed solos.
Friend, the lesson I learned here is clear; don’t begrudge another of enjoying the blessings the Lord so graciously bestows on them – whether they be tangible or intangible – things or opportunities. We just never know what tomorrow, or even the next moment, will hold for any of us. Take this opportunity to evaluate your attitudes. Ask the Holy Spirit to expose any questionable areas (Galatians 5:25). Are there places where you need to realign your heart issues to match God’s heart? Seek His forgiveness. Extend forgiveness where you need to and always remember, don’t begrudge and other, you just never know. . .but God always does.
What a sweet sharing! I read a great line recently, “Never look in your neighbors cup except to be sure they have enough.” It is so hard. I’m trying to focus my eyes on the work of God in and through others so I will rejoice–and not be critical. Why or why is it so hard for us folks to do that? Again, thanks!!!
My reply to you is a little late, but I take to heart your quote about our neighbor’s cup! I read a line just today that said we are personally equipped to enhance the corporate work of the body of Christ. I had never really thought about it that way, but it fits right in with your comment. Thank you for sharing!