Today our writer for the blog is Grace Maples.
Grace Maples is a member of RBC and a sinner saved by grace, starting her B.S. in Education online with Boyce College later this year. She enjoys reading books, teaching little ones, music, discussing theology and worldview, writing and blogging, and baking. She blogs about her Savior and her experience as a Christian young woman over at Proclaiming His Excellencies.
Sometimes it can be easy for us as believers to get tired and distracted from seemingly mundane tasks.
Maybe we feel as though God has called us to a big task, like missions, marriage, or ministry. We get so enveloped by the idea of accomplishing big things for God’s kingdom that we forget about what God has called us to now, as we wait for him to return.
Not only this, but we can often feel like our mundane lives do not matter so much as our life will when we finally accomplish something big. We feel like we cannot please God until we reach our goal for his kingdom.
Saints, this mindset is so common, and yet so unbiblical. Christ calls us to live lives of faithfulness, in whatever situation he has placed us in, whether that be among the unreached, or in disciplining our children at home. We are called to be faithful.
What is Faithfulness?
Faithfulness in the New Testament is used many times. It comes from the Greek word, pistos, and it pertains to being worthy of belief or trust. It means being trustworthy, dependable, and inspiring trust/faith. According to the dictionary, it means remaining dedicated, loyal, and steadfast.
It is also a fruit of the Spirit. “But the fruit of the Spirit is…faithfulness” (Gal. 5:22, ESV).
Faithfulness is the quality of being dedicated and steadfast to the things that God has called you to. It is a life lived in a state of obedience toward God. It’s undistractedly following what God commands, even when others around you are doing other things.
Faithful Stewards (Matthew 25)
Jesus, as we can see from the gospels, has a lot to say about being faithful stewards.
One of the parables Jesus tells in Matthew is about faithful and disobedient servants. In Matthew 25, Jesus tells the story of a man who went on a journey and left some investments with his servants. One servant had five talents, one had two talents, and the last servant was given one talent. When he came back and settled accounts with his servants, the one with the five talents, and the one with the two talents had made investments and doubled their master’s money.
He tells them, “’Well done good and faithful servant. You have been faithful over a little; I will set you over much. Enter into the joy of your master’” (Mat 25:23).
The servant who had not invested his master’s money was punished and sent to the place of “weeping and gnashing of teeth” (Mat 25:30). He was unfaithful and claimed he was scared of what the master would say, so he kept the money hidden away. Jay Adams says the unfaithful servant “is revealed as ungenuine from his failure to do works that grow out of faith.”
This parable, most theologians concur, is talking about works, and how people will be judged on their actions on the last day. This parable concentrates on the eternal aspect of how people invest their time and resources as they wait for Jesus to come back. We see this principle elsewhere in the Bible where we are told that our works will be tested by fire, and “each one’s work will become manifest, for the Day will disclose it, because it will be revealed by fire, and the fire will test what sort of work each one has done. If the work that anyone has built on the foundation survives, he will receive a reward” (1 Cor 3:13-14).
While this parable can be applied in a larger sense, this article is going to concentrate on the aspect of faithfulness. God calls us to be faithful to steward our time, our resources, and our talents well in order to advance his kingdom. Jay Adams says, “Works of wisdom and faithfulness grow out of faith and characterize and identify true Christians.”
Jesus says earlier in chapter 24: “Who then is the faithful and wise servant, whom his master has set over his household, to give them their food at the proper time? Blessed is that servant whom his master will find so doing when he comes. Truly I say to you, he will set him over all his possessions.” Again, in this passage we see this same principle: God calls us to be faithful in the things he has given us as we wait for him to come back.
Faithful In Little Before Much
1 Corinthians 4:2 says, “Moreover, it is required of stewards that they be found faithful.”
What about the small things? Like doing the dishes, or reading our Bibles? Or meeting with a friend to study a book together, or discussing the gospel with an unbelieving family member? After all, many of us have big dreams, and what to hurry up and get ahead so that we can follow what God has called us to. So we tend to leave behind the simple tasks of life.
Whatever situation we are in is the one, by His sovereign will, he has placed us in to bring him glory. It can be more attractive for us to be faithful in those tasks that are before others. That can gain reward in this life. But, as Christians, we must especially be faithful in the tasks that are just between us and God. The tasks that no one sees, no one can congratulate you for. These bring rewards in heaven, not here on earth.
We must learn to be faithful in these tasks before we can be faithful in the bigger tasks.
For instance, if you want to one day get married, that is a good thing and a holy thing. But, it is a very big responsibility. You must ask yourself what are you doing now to be faithful in your singleness that will help prepare yourself for marriage? Because marriage does not change what you are called to as a son or daughter of Christ. It only adds more weight to how you further God’s kingdom. If you are not faithful now, in your singleness, to grow in your knowledge of God’s Word and grow in service to God’s people, how will you be faithful when you are married?
Another example would be missions. It can be easy to set your goal on missions to the unreached while skipping over what God has called you to do here and now. We must ask ourselves if we are being faithful now in what he has called us to. Like sharing the gospel, and building relationships with those who do not know God. Are we faithful in these tasks? Moving somewhere different does not somehow change our faithfulness to God’s command.
Without the practice of being faithful in the small things, we will find that being faithful in the big situations of life will be near impossible. We must be like the two faithful servants in Jesus’ parable, who were faithful in little and given responsibility for much.
Maybe you do not feel called to some big idea or dream, but maybe you feel as though being faithful in the day-to-day tasks, such as work, taking care of your children, or doing housework, does not count for the glory of Christ. Take heart, my friend, because this is not the case!
One of my favorite writers, Elisabeth Elliot, talks about faithfulness this way: “This job has been given to me to do. Therefore, it is a gift. Therefore, it is a privilege. Therefore, it is an offering I may make to God. Therefore, it is to be done gladly, if it is done for Him. Here, not somewhere else, I may learn God’s way. In this job, not in some other, God looks for faithfulness.”
Our faithfulness in the small tasks is an offering to the King of Kings. It is a pleasing offering to the Lord, no matter how small it is.
It may seem as though faithfulness is impossible, as we look at our own sin and the depravity of the world around us. But take heart. We do not walk this walk alone. Our faithful High Priest is faithful when we are not. He will help us, and his Holy Spirit will empower us by his Word to be faithful to the Lord. It is only by His power and His strength and realizing all that we have been given in Christ, that we can be faithful.
May it be that when Christ returns that we as His Children are found faithful in what we have been called to, whether that be in changing dirty diapers or sharing the gospel with the unreached.