Working at road construction must be the most thankless job of all. How often has anyone said, “Wow, this road is so smooth and comfortable. I really appreciate the crew that paved this.” But just let someone appear with an orange “Stop/Slow” sign or the dreaded “Follow Me—Pilot Vehicle”, and we all think our lives are ruined. People honk, grumble, and give the stinkeye for making them slow down or (perish the thought) wait. I have been guilty of complaining while rolling down the highway between a narrow path of orange barrels. Although I am still able to go 50 or 60 miles per hour, all I can think about is how much better my life would be if I could be going 65 or 70. Why do they have to block off 10 miles of road when they aren’t even working on it? That’s the worst part—when there is no one there, no machinery going or people moving.

I noticed something strange the last time I passed a work zone. The sign said, “Men Working.” It struck me as odd because I always remember the signs as saying, “Men at Work.” I chuckled to myself and thought that “working” was much better than just “at work.” Then I thought, I wonder if God feels the same way about the workers in His church. The construction foreman would certainly not be happy with his workers just leaning on a shovel after clocking in. “Hey boss, just be happy I’m even here!” Likewise, I don’t think God is satisfied with us merely being counted as “present” when we serve Him either. Scriptures tell us we must be workers and servants; not just decorations on His shelf. James 1:22 “But be doers of the word, and not hearers only…” Romans 2:13 “[F]or not the hearers of the law are just in the sight of God, but the doers of the law will be justified.”James 2:17 “Thus also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead.”

A consumer mentality seems to have overtaken the church in recent years. Worshipers are more concerned with what programs and services a congregation can offer to THEM (music I like, child care, coffee bar, etc.) rather than seeking ways to serve God and His church. We must seek the interest of others before ourselves. Let us all strive to be humble and joyful servants of the Lord and one another. We must work hard in guiding others to the glorious salvation we have found for ourselves. Let’s get to work because this road to heaven isn’t going to pave itself!

By Rob Lester

Rob Lester writes at Beams of Pharos blog.