Sharing in the Master's Happiness
Published by Terri Smith on Wed, 06/11/2014 - 3:45pm
By: Steve Becker
His master replied, “Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness!”
I retired in 2012. The company hosted a retirement celebration and invited my family, along with my coworkers. It was a lot like being at my own funeral. It was all the “eulogies” being given. Towards the end of the evening, I asked permission to speak freely.
“I am a fortunate man,” I said. “Who I am today is based on some very good choices I made early in my life. I wasn’t always this ‘admirable’. One of the speakers has quoted my oft-used line, ‘I’m half the man I used to be… and that’s a very good thing.’
“The most critical choice was one I made 40 years ago. For three years I had been searching for truth. I did not want to live a life of error. Truth had to be able to stand the test of time and the vagaries of life itself. I found what I was looking for and decided to live out fully the gospel of Jesus Christ.
“Through God’s grace, I surrounded myself with likeminded people through Christian community, church and Christians in Commerce. It has enabled me to weather the storms, of which there have been many.
“The Creator became one of his created in Jesus Christ. Jesus was unjustly crucified, taking on our sinful nature to set us free. Through his resurrection, the Holy Spirit, and living the life of Christ we are transformed. Jesus enables us to become the very best of who he made us to be. And through us he’s bringing forth his kingdom.
“In the parable of the talents, what impresses me at this time is the call to share in the master’s happiness. This has been my experience no matter what my personal or work situation has been.”
I had worked for extended periods at two different companies during 47 years of employment. One was for 17 years doing work I loved with a very materialistic corporation. The other was 14 years with the company throwing the retirement party. It was an unfamiliar and challenging industry for me, but led by a person committed to building the Kingdom of God. Two very dissimilar situations faced with different challenges. Living out the gospel in both situations was formative.
This audience had a unique view into the validity of my testimony. They knew my witness wasn’t flawless, but it was authentic. In difficult situations it was often challenging to choose the life of Christ over my old nature. When I failed, I needed to admit my shortcomings and ask forgiveness. It was humbling but healthy.
I am a fortunate – and grateful – man.
TAKE THE CHALLENGE: Am I living the life of Christ by who I am, what I do, and how I do it, no matter where I am?