Thursday, November 21, 2013

Receiving rewards!

All Christians will stand before Jesus to be judged. It's a ceremony that is not drenched with condemnation, but of rewards! (1 Corinthians 9:4-27; 2 Timothy 2:5)

It's OK to think about the rewards. I do, a lot. The reason that it's OK to think about this, is that I acknowledge that I could do nothing apart from Jesus. (John 15:5). It's because I acknowledge that the Holy Spirit was the One who enabled me to do the things I did in the name of Jesus. (2 Corinthians 3:6;  Gal. 5:22-23, Luke 24:49).

I can't wait to see if Jesus was pleased with anything I did in the Spirit's power. I can't wait to cast my crowns back to Him! (Revelation 4:4).

As much as I enjoy thinking about working for the name of Jesus and how the Bema Seat Judgment-Rewards ceremony will go, something struck me last night.

A beloved pastor and teacher in our area gave his testimony. He is a quadriplegic. He spoke of the grace of Jesus, His provision, His healing to the extent he was healed physically, and shared a kingdom perspective by sharing his love of the life that Jesus has given him.

There were several points at which I was struck. The entire testimony was compelling, but I am a sucker for a good story about a good marriage. He has one. He also has two adorable children. He and his wife married after he was hurt.

He said he can't wait to see his beloved and diligent, kind, uncomplaining wife receive her rewards in heaven.

I often think about the rewards of the past martyrs, when they receive the crown of life. (Revelation 2:10). I often think about rejoicing when the faithful pastors of the past, like Spurgeon, Edwards, Calvin,  and the men like them receive their reward. I think or my rewards. But how often do I think of my own contemporaries laboring now, and their rewards, and rejoicing with them in Jesus' name?

[crickets]

I'm so busted! LOL. His was a tremendous testimony and I'm now rejoicing that I can rejoice in thinking of my peers' rewards. I now am envisioning my pastors' rewards ceremony, and my friends'. The bible says

Whoever says he is in the light and hates his brother is still in darkness. Whoever loves his brother abides in the light, and in him there is no cause for stumbling” (1 John 2:9–10).

I love my brethren, and I can't wait to see them receive blessing from Jesus, and they, and I, send those blessings right back to the One who is glory itself.

Who are you envisioning receiving their reward from Jesus?


4 comments:

  1. Hi Elizabeth,

    Whoever gives a cup of water to a little one in Jesus name, they will surely not lose their reward. :)

    I bet we will all be surprised at the rewards we see our fellow believers receive, because many Christian's faithful acts are not done in the sight of men. Think of how many saints labor in their "prayer closets", where no one hears them but God. Or the godly men who daily turn their hearts away from lust, and diligently pursue Christ, doing all their work as unto Him, no matter what task they are called to, big or small. Or the godly women who quietly nurture little children and raise them in the fear and admonition of the Lord, and spend their days loving others with servants' hearts. How many saints have sat with an ailing friend, or freely and cheerfully given money or supplies when there was a legitimate need, or were diligent to witness to friends, family and neighbors? What about those who daily fight false doctrine, or comfort the hurting, or hunger for the Lord's return?

    It's easy to imagine prominent believers receiving rewards, especially those who have done something "large", but God sees even the most minute of faithful words and deeds of all the saints worldwide, every day... and if something so simple as giving a cup of cold water to a little one doesn't escape His notice, we can be certain that our brothers' and sisters' labors haven't been lost on our King!

    How fun will that be to see all the rewards given out, and then all our crowns cast back at His feet!

    So long answer to your short question - I look forward to seeing the rewards from all the "hidden" deeds of the "average" believers. :)

    -Carolyn

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  2. I know a lady who goes into the "ghetto" and hands out Bibles. I can't wait to see what impact she has had. I think also the mom's who have prayed and prayed for their children maybe never knowing if they've become Christians.

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    1. Oh, yes, I agree. The moms laboring and tearfully appealing to Jesus from their prayer closets...

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