“The one who plants and the one who waters have one purpose, and they will each be rewarded according to their own labor.” — 1 Corinthians 3:8
Pinch hitters don’t get announced in the opening lineup, but they do one thing especially well. They may not get the attention, but they provide a clutch benefit for their team. In order to do that one thing well, they spend many hours in batting practice when no one else is watching — kind of like a busy beaver.
Even in the dark while everything around them sleeps, beavers are busy gathering sticks and mud to build dams in streams and rivers. Beavers are always building, and though not always appreciated, their labor is important: the dams filter water to reduce water pollution, allow different types of plants to grow, provide an environment for fish and animals to thrive, store water during droughts, and also help prevent flooding.
Just as beavers work in the darkness to the benefit of the world around them, we can light up the dark “night” with our work of sharing the Gospel. Many people dwell in darkness, without much knowledge of God or the good news of His Son. As we meet and greet people, we have a glorious opportunity to labor for the Lord.
Jesus said, “While I am in the world, I am the light of the world” (John 9:4-5). And He’s entrusted us to be His light for the darkness around us: “For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Live as children of light (for the fruit of the light consists in all goodness, righteousness and truth)… Everything exposed by the light becomes visible — and everything that is illuminated becomes a light” (Ephesians 5:8-9, 13).
When Jesus called His disciples, He trained them to be busy beavers for the Lord. They did the most important type of labor: Sharing the message of salvation with as many people as possible. Jesus commanded us to focus on one main task: “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit” (Matthew 28:18-19). And so the disciples devoted their time and energy to this important work.
As Paul repeated and reinforced Jesus’ great command, he emphasized the importance of delivering the message without concern of recognition. “I planted the seed, Apollos watered it, but God has been making it grow. So neither the one who plants nor the one who waters is anything, but only God, who makes things grow. The one who plants and the one who waters have one purpose, and they will each be rewarded according to their own labor” (1 Corinthians 3:6-8).
Since every soul is precious and worthy of salvation, we need to be busy planting Gospel seeds and bringing light to the darkness around us.
— Bill Kent, Pastor of Memorial Baptist Church, Sylvania, Georgia
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