Living in the “In Between”

45 “Who then is the faithful and wise servant, whom the master has put in charge of the servants in his household to give them their food at the proper time? 46 It will be good for that servant whose master finds him doing so when he returns. 47 I tell you the truth, he will put him in charge of all his possessions. 48 But suppose that servant is wicked and says to himself, ‘My master is staying away a long time,’ 49 and he then begins to beat his fellow servants and to eat and drink with drunkards. 50 The master of that servant will come on a day when he does not expect him and at an hour he is not aware of. 51 He will cut him to pieces and assign him a place with the hypocrites, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth. (Matthew 24:45-51)

How do we live in the “in between time,” the time between Christ’s first and second comings?

Regardless of how things turn out in the end, regardless of whether there is a rapture before, during, or at the end of the tribulation, regardless of whether Christ comes back today or 1000 years from now…we are called to be faithful and wise servants for Christ.

Servants. We are accountable to Christ. We are not our own. We have been bought with a price (1 Cor. 6:19-20). Our desire should be to please and honor the One who died for us. I should wake up each day asking the Lord, “How can I serve You today? How can I please You?”

Faithful. Paul says that as servants and stewards of Christ, we are called first and foremost to be faithful (1 Cor. 4:1-2). To walk with Christ consistently, day by day, in good times and bad, in sickness and in health, for richer or for poorer. And we are called to faithfully give food to Christ’s other servants at the proper time. I love that picture. Our simple responsibility is to give other people food to eat at the right time and in the right measure. I don’t think he is talking about physical food…though compassion for the poor is certainly a part of it. He is talking about giving people the word of God, the truth of God, the good news of Christ…at the right time…and in the right measure. A word aptly spoken is like apples of gold in settings of silver (Proverbs 25:11).

Wise. How do we give people the right food in the right measure at the right time? By being wise. By having our eyes opened by the Spirit to see as Christ sees. By training our minds to be discerning through active meditation and application of the word of God. Wisdom only comes through the daily practice of walking in the Spirit in line with the Word of God.

Such a faithful, wise servant is given charge of all of Christ’s possessions when He returns.

What is the opposite of a faithful, wise servant?

A servant who says in his heart, “I am not accountable. God will never see what I am doing. And if He does see it, then He doesn’t care.”

A servant who harms others in his relationships, who uses his words recklessly, who manipulates and uses others for his own advantage.

A servant who takes what God has given him (his time, resources, money, talents) and uses them solely for his own pleasure, who gets drunk on God’s time with other people who can care less about Him. “It’s all about me and gratifying my lusts while I can with whom I can.”

It is two separate ways of thinking, living, and relating. And the dividing line is my attitude toward Christ and His return. Do I believe Him? Do I trust Him? Do I long for His return? Do I desire to please Him so that I can look into His face with joy and satisfaction and hear Him say, “Well done, good and faithful servant!”?

Lord, capture my heart today. May I live this day for Your glory. May my words feed Your servants at the right time.

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