So What?

Daily Reflection / Produced by The High Calling
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So, my dear brothers and sisters, be strong and immovable. Always work enthusiastically for the Lord, for you know that nothing you do for the Lord is ever useless.

1 Corinthians 15:58

In 1 Corinthians 15, the Apostle Paul argues for the reality of resurrection, explaining our own hope of being raised from the dead. He summarizes the main point of this good news in verse 57: "But thank God! He gives us victory over sin and death through our Lord Jesus Christ."

For some of us, this truth is compelling, touching the deepest places in our soul. But, I expect that others of us, if we're really honest, might want to ask "So what?" We don't mean to be disrespectful, but we do wonder how all of this lofty theology makes a difference in our everyday lives. How might the victory of God over sin and death impact the way I live today at home and at work, in my relationships and in my business decisions, when I'm shopping or when I'm at school?

Paul answers the "So what?" question in 1 Corinthians 15:58. There he writes, "So my dear brothers and sisters, be strong and immovable. Always work enthusiastically for the Lord, for you know that nothing you do for the Lord is ever useless." Paul begins by using a strong connective in Greek, a word that could be translated as "so" or "therefore." Then he follows up with one imperative and two participles that expand upon it: Be . . . abounding . . . knowing.

Because of God's victory, we are to be strong (or firm) and immovable. Our confident hope gives us the ability to remain faithful even in times of suffering and struggle. Yet we are not firm and immovable like some sort of sedentary Christian rock. Rather, we are to abound in the work of the Lord always. God's victory motivates us to action. We serve others in the name of Christ with gusto and consistency. Everything we do becomes a response to the good news of our future in the Lord.

Finally, the victory of God allows us to know that nothing we do for the Lord is "ever useless." Though, in the moment, it might seem as if our efforts to serve the Lord are fruitless, in time everything we do for him turns out to matter.

Thus, the victory of God in Christ energizes us to abound in the work of the Lord. Remember, this doesn't refer just to church or mission work. We're to abound in God's work always, in everything we do. This is, indeed, our high calling as God's people.

QUESTIONS FOR FURTHER REFLECTION: How does the hope of your resurrection impact you? How might this hope make a difference in your life each day?

PRAYER: Dear Lord, how I thank you for the hope of the resurrection . . . my resurrection as a member of your people. How wonderful to know that I am participating in your victory of sin and death. Hallelujah!

May I live each day in light of this confident hope. May I work for you enthusiastically, giving my all to you and the work of your kingdom. May I be encouraged by the knowledge that you will use even my smallest efforts for your purposes. How great it is to realize that nothing I do for you is useless!

Help me, dear Lord, to live for you, not just in obviously "religious" settings, but in every context of my life. Teach me to see my whole life as one giant opportunity to serve and glorify you.

I pray in the name of Jesus, who defeated sin and death. Amen.