A Call To The Remnant

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Provision versus work.

Posted by appolus on May 4, 2021

There is a great gulf between our perception of provision and what we think of when think of work. The Lord makes provision for His children. Does He have expectations? Yes. Yet, the context of duty must be in light of a proper understanding of His provision. As in all things, the Lord is interested in why we do a thing rather than what we do. Two identical actions, with different motivations, can be to one a blessing and light, and to another a curse and darkness. Let me try and illustrate.

I grew up in what is known as a tenement. It was a large Victorian stone building. My American friends would call it an apartment building or block but to me that seems much to modern a name for something rather dark and foreboding as a tenement building. Thick damp stone walls. Big families crammed into tiny one or two bedroom apartments, some only having one room, we would call that a “single end.” They were cold and drafty and full of mice, often times there would be mushrooms growing out of the walls. Outside toilets meant “pots,” under the bed. Old metal baths pulled out on a Sunday night for bathing. Now, that was when I grew up, imagine what it was like one hundred and fifty years before that?

Imagine living like that for generations and then making your way across a vast ocean and finding yourself in the new world. Now imagine that you find out that you can get 160 acres, for free! You could homestead. The deal you would make is that you would work the land. You would cut down trees, remove stumps, remove all stones,till the land, plant the seed, tend the fields, bring in the harvest. Store the harvest and sell what you could in town after having made provision for your family.

If that was me in those days, you would wonder what that singing was, even when the weather was terrible. It would be me, as I chopped down tree and dug up stumps. It would be me as I tilled the land. And every day I would be in wonder of how I came upon such good fortune. I would remember where I came from often. I would remember that I had been delivered from drudgery and poverty. My work would be a joy as I kept in mind where I came from. In that sense it would not be work at all, it would all be provision.

Now consider the lazy un-thankful man. Would you hear him singing in the field? Would he be angrily carrying out his “work?” Would he be constantly complaining about the nature of his work, the weather and his aching bones? In all, the homestead act in America would offer 500 million acres of land. Only 80 million acres were ever taken and of those who did take it, in many areas the failure rate was as high as 60% Now of course there would be multiple factors in the failures, but in the end it was, for many, simply too hard.

The saints of God do not fail. They know where they came from and they never forget. They know they were dead in their sins. They know they were bound and captive to them. They know that countless generations before them died in their sin. They know they have been delivered. They know how good their God is. And so, even on the hardest days, through the toughest trials, it’s all provision for the saint. He has been given this new life and no matter what, he knows it. None of it is “work,’ to the saint, rather it is a labor of love. Your life itself is a labor of love as unto God, your redeemer.

What spirit do you have saint? Is your life a labor of love? Even when it rains, even when it snows, even when the stumps are refusing to yield as you labor to remove them? It is good to remind ourselves often of just what we were delivered from and who delivered us and gave us what we have now. Glory to God in the highest. He gives good things to His children and He knows how to train them and raise them for His will and His own good pleasure. Everything becomes a good thing when we see that it is all God’s provision.

2 Responses to “Provision versus work.”

  1. I really like the homesteading analogy. May I add that for those that succeed, they not only have the right motive, but have also learnt where to draw their strength from, “I can do all things through Christ that strengthens me.”

    Thank you bro Appolus

    • appolus said

      Amen, outside of the Spirit of God we can do nothing, and still, He has His expectations of us, there is a part we must do……..bro Frank

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