“Let love and faithfulness never leave you; bind them around your neck, write them on the tablet of your heart.” (Proverbs 3:3)
Nestled in the Rocky Mountain range of Yellowstone National Park, you will find the most famous geyser in the world – Old Faithful. The Wyoming landmark was given its name in 1870 because of its predictability. Since 2000 the geothermal marvel continues to regularly erupt every 44 to 125 minutes, up to twenty times each day. I once knew a lady who volunteered at a nursing home several hours each day, at least five days a week, for many years. As long as she could find a ride – she unselfishly served during any kind of weather, sometimes without regard for her own well-being. She said that volunteering was what kept her going. She believed that the little things she was able to do for the residents who lived there were significant and felt, because of her age, she related well to them. She viewed what she did as a ministry, and at one point I simply began to refer to my friend endearingly as “Old Faithful.”
The motto “Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds” was once attributed to the U. S. Postal Service. Even though it can be found inscribed in block letters on the James Farley Post Office near New York City’s Penn Station, the postal service claims that it has no official creed. The words give testimony to the prevailing attitude and dedication that our workers once had for their jobs. These days, the concept of faithfulness does not apply to much of our life view. We take marriage vows, but abandoning them has become far too easy. We are loyal to our favorite sports team as long as they are winning; if not, we look elsewhere. We declare support for a political candidate who we think closely reflects our values, but it is easy to be swayed to someone else’s perspective. Even our Pledge of Allegiance to the nation has become tarnished.
I suspect that is also true with many of us in our relationship with God. In Luke 16:1-7, Jesus tells The Parable of the Shrewd Manager. In it, a manager mishandles his master’s wealth and is informed that he will be discharged. In his final days of employment, he cleverly plots to seek favor from his master’s debtors by reducing what they owe (most likely an excessive amount). He does this in the hope that they might later take care of him. Surprisingly the rich man expresses his admiration for the steward’s actions. Jesus states: “For the people of this world are more shrewd in dealing with their own kind than are the people of the light. Use your worldly resources to benefit others and make friends. Then, when your earthly possessions are gone, they will welcome you to an eternal home. If you are faithful in little things, you will be faithful in large ones. But if you are dishonest in little things, you won’t be honest with greater responsibilities.” (Luke 16:8-10). At first glance, it may appear that the master is rewarding dishonesty. The greater principle here is that if everything we own is a gift from God, then we come to understand that we are His stewards. So, we can understand Jesus’ conclusion that: “No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money” (Luke 16:13). Bottom line – we must direct our faithfulness toward God, not the things of this world.
When it comes right down to it, we will never be as faithful to God as He is to us. The psalmist said, “Your faithfulness extends to every generation, as enduring as the earth you created” (Psalm 119:90). Thomas Obediah Chisholm reflected that wisdom when he penned these words to a famous hymn: “Great is Thy faithfulness! Morning by morning new mercies I see. All I have needed Thy hand hath provided. Great is Thy faithfulness, Lord, unto me!” Therefore, we must be faithful in the little things – our prayers, the acts of love we show to those in need, and by our devotion in applying His Word to our lives. How reassuring it is to know that even when we falter, He is there. The Apostle Paul stated, “If we are faithless, he remains faithful— for he cannot deny himself” (2 Timothy 2:13). For He is the “Old Faithful” to each of us. With great predictability, we can be sure that His next blessing is just minutes away.
REFLECTION: How has God shown His faithfulness to you? What are the little things on which you need to focus in order to be more faithful to Him? What steps will you put in place to “bind them” in your life?
A NEW LOOKUP DEVOTION IS UPLOADED EACH WEEK. THE NEXT WEEKLY POSTING WILL BE ON SAT., FEBRUARY 11, 2017. COMMENTS ARE WELCOMED.