Sunday, May 17, 2015

Job Abandonment


National Archives & Records Administration, ARC Identifier: 302035

I have written a letter of resignation, though mine included a two-week notice. I have typed letters of resignation for other people, too, but many simply abandon jobs. One I remember had some pretty serious consequences. The employee had a company credit card and used it liberally in New Orleans preceding Mardi Gras. Upon realizing his error, he checked into a mental institution for rehabilitation. His parents contacted the company and began setting up restitution.

Jesus’ disciples were very much aware of job abandonment:

In that same hour said Jesus to the multitudes, Are ye come out as against a thief with swords and staves for to take me? I sat daily with you teaching in the temple, and ye laid no hold on me. But all this was done, that the scriptures of the prophets might be fulfilled. Then all the disciples forsook him, and fled. (Matthew 26:55-56 KJV)

Forsaken. Even Peter, upon whose testimony the church was to be built, as we find from Matthew 29:69 to:

Then began he to curse and to swear, saying, I know not the man. And immediately the cock crew. (Matthew 26:74 KJV)

Paul understood abandonment as John Mark left he and Barnabas, but also:

For Demas hath forsaken me, having loved this present world, and is departed unto Thessalonica; Crescens to Galatia, Titus unto Dalmatia. Only Luke is with me. Take Mark, and bring him with thee: for he is profitable to me for the ministry. (2 Timothy 4:10-11 KJV)

Mark redeemed himself, giving Paul good cause to see him as profitable for the ministry.

Isn’t that awesome? Both Peter and Mark abandoned the job God had in store for them. Both returned to witness to the fact that God has use for those who abandoned Him – which we all have at one time or another, haven’t we? Isaiah wrote of this:

All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the LORD hath laid on him the iniquity of us all. (Isaiah 53:6 KJV)

We, too, can return to the job. Think of how many turned our Lord down during their lives, yet got the job done. Well, it’s a much shorter list to name those who followed without fail.

I’m not here to list failures, though. Mine would take up much more space than is available on the web. Add yours and we would just weep on each others shoulder. No, I’m here today to recognize failures occur and redemption is available to each of us.

That’s the miracle! We proclaim with Zacharias:

Blessed be the Lord God of Israel; for he hath visited and redeemed his people, (Luke 1:68 KJV)

We can sing with Fanny Crosby:

Redeemed, how I love to proclaim it!
Redeemed by the blood of the Lamb;
Redeemed through His infinite mercy,
His child and forever I am.

And, we can learn a new song:

And they sung a new song, saying, Thou art worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof: for thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation; (Revelation 5:9 KJV)

Get back to the job God has for us.

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