Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful. – Colossians 4:2
“I’m gonna live where the green grass grows, watch my corn pop up in rows, every night get tucked in close to youuuuuuu…” – Good ‘ole Tim McGraw
You Value What You Work For
I love this song! It is just one of those happy songs that deceives me just for a moment into thinking that I would actually like to live in the country. I’ve always loved country music. Blame it all on my roots, I guess (Shreveport, Louisiana, that is). As nice as it would be, though, to watch my corn pop up in rows, don’t you know corn never just pops up in rows on its own. It takes a lot of work.
When I turned sixteen, my dad bought me a red 1996 Pontiac Sunfire. I drove that thing like crazy. Every day on my way to school I would drive so fast that the speedometer would go as far to the right as it could go, and then the accelerator would shut down. Have you ever done that? If not, don’t! People called my car the “red demon” (unbeknownst to my mom and dad, of course). One time, I got pulled over by three cops at once. I guess I was going so fast that I didn’t notice them at first. Apparently, I was going 69mph in a 35mph zone.
I was also notorious for locking my keys in my car. A guy in my high school taught me how to break into my car with a coat hanger, which became a technique I used a little more often than the average person. If I locked my keys in my car, I’d just think, “Oh well, I’ll just jab a coat hanger in it and unlock it that way.” I ended up keeping a spare key in my school file because I locked myself out of my car so often. Wouldn’t you know, I’d lose that too and resort to my awesome, thuggish coat hanger method. Needless to say, I took that poor car for granted. I didn’t value it, probably because, to me, it was free.
On a slightly different note, I now have a vehicle that I own and pay for. When it needs maintenance or if I wreck it, guess who has to pay for it: I do. I wouldn’t think of topping off the speedometer and would hate to jab a coat hanger into the door! I value that vehicle because the money is coming out of my own pocket, money that I worked for. I’ve noticed that when I work for something, I tend to appreciate it a lot more. Don’t you?
We value what we work for, and we value the relationships that we invest in. There is stability in knowing that we are giving our best to our job, at home, and to the people in our lives. Laziness, passivity, and idleness are a breeding ground for insecurity. But when we give God our best in everything we do, we can have a clean conscience. A clean conscience equals freedom. Have you ever been burdened by a guilty conscience? I certainly have. It is smothering and strips you of self-esteem. But the freedom of a clean conscience that comes through Jesus Christ and through living a life devoted to Him is the best feeling in the whole world. Give your best to what you do, and especially to the people in your life. Then you can have confidence in your life, and in your God who honors the promises of His Word.