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Look up, Look in, Look out!

"Then he said to his disciples, “The harvest is plentiful, but the labourers are few; therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out labourers into his harvest.”

(Matthew 9:37-38 ESV)

A wise man once told me that I should view my future not in terms of “what should I do?”, but more in terms of “how many people could I reach?”

He was referring to the decisions I was to make as my first career came to an end and I contemplated a future without it. He added to his counsel that the circumstances of my career-change, that is the burnout that issued a period of pause and recovery, had added to my arsenal many human skills that could multiply my hitherto professional skills, and that together, they could maximise impact for the kingdom.

This may not seem the obvious starting mark for career-planning, but it was wholly right – and wholly Biblical. The man underscored his counsel with two Scriptures: Jesus’ parable of the talents and Matthew 9:37 (ESV) “the harvest is plentiful but the labourers are few” and suggested they become a compass for my life.

As we arrive at Lent and the walk to Easter, we may take time to look inwardly on our journey of faith. As we do, we should recall that God fills us and teaches us in order to pour us out. Jesus asked the disciples to look up. To look and notice the lost sheep around them and the need to work the harvest field.

God will call each of us differently, using the tools unique to our skills, experiences and personality, but he will call us. In the parable of the talents, Jesus makes clear that God expects us to take what he has given us, however big or small, and multiply its impact for his kingdom – even if as simply as stagnant money grows with interest (Matthew 25:14-30).

This Lenten season, make space to invite God into your rhythms and routines, to sit with him and learn from him, but then consider how you might take what he has given you to reach others and build his kingdom.

Copyright © Sharmila Meadows 2023

Scripture quotations are from The ESV®Bible (The Holy Bible, English Standard Version®), copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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