Working for the Kingdom

Daily Reflection / Produced by The High Calling
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These were his instructions to them: “The harvest is great, but the workers are few. So pray to the Lord who is in charge of the harvest; ask him to send more workers into his fields.”

Luke 10:2

At the beginning of Luke 9, Jesus had sent his twelve disciples out to extend his own ministry of the kingdom of God. Now, in the opening verses of chapter 10, Jesus sent seventy-two other disciples out as a kind of advance team. They were to go to the towns that Jesus planned to visit, preaching the kingdom and healing the sick, thus recruiting others to join Jesus in his work. Thus, Jesus began his instructions by saying, “The harvest is great, but the workers are few. So pray to the Lord who is in charge of the harvest, ask him to send more workers into his fields” (10:2).

The seventy-two disciples would have sensed the urgency in Jesus’ instructions. In their agricultural society, if a farmer was blessed with an abundant harvest, he would be eager to hire workers to bring it in, since harvesting has to happen at just the right time. Jesus was saying, in effect, that the time was ripe for people to receive the good news of the kingdom of God. But, notice, he was looking for more than mere believers in this good news. Jesus sought workers who would participate in with him in the ministry of the kingdom.

Although Jesus is not physically present with us today, in many ways our situation is similar to that of the seventy-two disciples. We have been sent out with the good news of the kingdom of God, which is now focused in the person and work of Jesus. We also have the responsibility and privilege of inviting people into a relationship with Jesus as Lord and King. Those who respond to this message in faith become workers for the kingdom.

This does not mean, of course, that all Christians should become paid Christian workers as ministers or missionaries and the like. In fact, ironically, most of us will live out our calling as ambassadors for the kingdom of God in the places where we work: in our offices and classrooms, in our shops and warehouses, in our homes and neighborhoods. The Lord has sent us to be harvesters for his kingdom right where we live and breathe and work and play.

QUESTIONS FOR FURTHER REFLECTION: In what ways are you harvesting for the kingdom of God? How are you living for God’s purposes in your daily life? If you were to think of yourself as one whom God has sent into the world to serve him in every part of your life, how might this affect the way you live today? and tomorrow?

PRAYER: Dear Lord, how thankful I am that you have chosen me as one of your disciples. Thank you for “sending me out” as your representative. Thank you for the privilege of sharing the good news of your kingdom and passing on your healing love to others.

Help me, dear Lord, to see my contribution to your kingdom not only in the things I do that are obviously “religious.” It’s easy for me to think of writing this reflection as service to you. But your vision for my discipleship is so much broader. Teach me to serve you in every opportunity throughout the day.

I pray, Lord, for those who find themselves in “ordinary” jobs as salespeople and supervisors and attorneys and teachers and, well, you name it. May they have a new vision for how they can serve you in their daily work. Guide them in all they do. Teach them to offer every task to you as an act of worship. Fill them with your Spirit and use them for the work of your kingdom. To you be all the glory! Amen.