Doing my Best

Once in awhile I like to examine my life and see where I’ve come and where I’m headed.  I want to give God my very best.  Of course, I never reach my goals, but we tell students to always reach high, because even if they don’t make it they’ll travel farther than if they reached for the low pickings.  With that in mind, here is my meditation.

Am I giving my best to God in my prayer life?  Do I give God some quality time each day, and do I speak honestly to Him whatever is on my heart?  Do I remember to thank Him for who He is and all He has done in His world and for me personally?   Prayer “on the hoof” is part of “Praying always”, but if thats all I give Him, its superficial.  Do I have an appointment with Him each day?

Am I giving God my best in study and thinking?  So many of us think our education ends when we graduate, but in reality that was always supposed to be the doorway to learning on our own.  Do I really study the bible?  Do I read commentaries so I understand the context and history better?  Do I read learned authors?  Do I study and form opinions about the great issues of the day?  If I spend my time on inane activities and entertainment, I am not giving my mind the food it needs to serve me well, and I’ll live a shallow life.

Do I do my best helping others?  Do I take time to notice what is going on around me?  Do I notice what is going on in the world?  Am I doing something about what I see?  I may not be able to do much about suffering in far off lands, but there is suffering going around me in the people I see every day.  Do I look beyond the surface in the events happening around me in the workplace, in my neighborhood, and in the people I see every day ?

Am I doing my best with my finances?  The money God has given me is His, and He has made me manager of it.  Am I managing well?  Am I conserving and growing what He gave me so that I can financially support worthy projects and help others, or do I use my money mostly selfishly?

Am I giving my best to serve God’s work?  Do I use all the gifts, time and ability He gave me wisely to serve His work in the world?  Its great to serve in a soup kitchen on Thanksgiving, but if he gave me the ability to manage things, maybe my best service is to be on the board of the ministry that runs the soup kitchen.   If God gave me counseling ability, maybe I should be counseling the patrons of the soup kitchen on a weekly basis.  It all depends on my gifts.  I can’t be what I’m not, but I can be the best me that I am.

Am I giving my best in sharing the thoughts, faith, hope and encouragement God has given me?  Do I offer words of encouragement and hope to those who seem to need them most, whether spoken words or written words?  With texting and e-mail, instant messaging and all, its so easy now to offer someone some words of support.

The way I read the words of Jesus, I think he looks at our lives through two lenses.  One is how much we love Him.  We show that in two ways–our prayer life and our love for others.  The second lens is what we did with what He gave us.

No, I don’t meet my own standards, and for that the skeptic would call me a hypocrite.  But I really do believe these things, and I want to be faithful in trying to attain them.   My reach exceeds my grasp, but may I never stop reaching until I meet Him in Heaven.

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