2 Corinthians 4:1

Therefore, since through God’s mercy we have this ministry, we do not lose heart.

Each one of us has a ministry.  It may be family, neigbours, pastoring, homeschooling, care of someone else who needs help, teaching, administering, the list of possibilities goes on and on.

If you’re like me, then there are times when you feel as though your hard work is availing nothing and you become discouraged and frustrated.

The thing is, why are you doing what you are doing?  I looked up parallel translations of Colossians 3:23

New International Version (©1984)
Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men,
New Living Translation (©2007)
Work willingly at whatever you do, as though you were working for the Lord rather than for people.
English Standard Version (©2001)
Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men,
New American Standard Bible (©1995)
Whatever you do, do your work heartily, as for the Lord rather than for men,
International Standard Version (©2008)
Whatever you do, work at it wholeheartedly as though you were doing it for the Lord and not merely for people.
GOD’S WORD® Translation (©1995)
Whatever you do, do it wholeheartedly as though you were working for your real master and not merely for humans.
King James Bible
And whatsoever ye do, do [it] heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men;
American King James Version
And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not to men;
American Standard Version
whatsoever ye do, work heartily, as unto the Lord, and not unto men;
Bible in Basic English
Whatever you do, do it readily, as to the Lord and not to men;
Douay-Rheims Bible
Whatsoever you do, do it from the heart, as to the Lord, and not to men:
Darby Bible Translation
Whatsoever ye do, labour at it heartily, as doing it to the Lord, and not to men;
English Revised Version
whatsoever ye do, work heartily, as unto the Lord, and not unto men;
Webster’s Bible Translation
And whatever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not to men;
Weymouth New Testament
Whatever you are doing, let your hearts be in your work, as a thing done for the Lord and not for men.
World English Bible
And whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord, and not for men,
Young’s Literal Translation
and all, whatever ye may do — out of soul work — as to the Lord, and not to men,

There are three key points here:

1. Whatever you are doing
2. Do it for God
3. Do it willingly, whole heartedly, readily

If only one person is blessed by what you are doing, isn’t that enough?  Consider Abraham in Genesis 18, pleading with God over Sodom and Gomorrah.  Were 50 men worth it? 45? 40? 30? 20? 10?  The fact is that God could not find a single man worth Sodom and Gomorrah and so He destroyed it.  God is not willing that any should perish, but that all should have eternal life (John 3:16).  He wants to bless each and every one of us.

It is not my job to bless everyone on earth.  My job is to honour God and do WHATEVER He gives me to do for Him and His glory.  Don’t get caught up in how big an impact you’re having.  If you are doing what God wants you to do then there is no bigger or better impact that you could have.

I really like the song Thank You for Giving To The Lord.  The ripple from even one life is astonishing!

I dreamed I went to Heaven, you were there with me.
We walked upon the streets of gold beside the Crystal Sea.
We heard the angels singing, then someone called your name.
You turned and saw this young man, and he was smiling as he came.
He said, “Friend you may not know me now,” and then he said, “But wait –
You used to teach my Sunday School, when I was only eight.
And every week you would say a prayer before the class would start.
And one day when you said that prayer,
I asked Jesus in my heart.”

Chorus
Thank you for giving to the Lord,
I am a life that was changed.
Thank you for giving to the Lord,
I am so glad you gave.

Then another man stood before you, he said “Remember the time,
A missionary came to your church, His pictures made you cry.
You didn’t have much money but you gave it anyway.
Jesus took that gift you gave
And that’s why I’m in Heaven today”

Chorus
Thank you for giving to the Lord,
I am a life that was changed.
Thank you for giving to the Lord,
I am so glad you gave.

One by one they came, far as your eyes could see.
Each life somehow touched by your generosity.
Little things that you had done, sacrifices that you made,
They were unnoticed on this earth
In Heaven now proclaimed.

Chorus
Thank you for giving to the Lord,
I am a life that was changed.
Thank you for giving to the Lord,
I am so glad you gave.

And I know up in Heaven you’re not supposed to cry
But I am almost sure there were tears in your eyes
As Jesus took your hand and you stood before the Lord
He said “My child look around you,
Great is your reward.”

Chorus
Thank you for giving to the Lord,
I am a life that was changed.
Thank you for giving to the Lord,
I am so glad you gave,
I am so glad you gave.

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