Most Sundays, I go to church and come away feeling encouraged, filled up and ready to face whatever comes my way. But then I get to the rest of the week, and I struggle to connect my Sunday worship to my weekday work—and the rest of my life, too. I think my problem is that I try to figure out what God wants me to do, instead of who God wants me to be.
Trying to figure out what God wants me to do leads to a path of self-effort and works, and I become tired and even disillusioned. However, trying to understand who God wants me to be is different. That gets me thinking and praying about my identity as a joint heir with Christ (Romans 8:17). It also gets me thinking about how God gifted me (1 Corinthians 12; 1 Peter 4:10)—how He wired me and put me together.
I believe God gifted me in the area of helps or service (see 1 Corinthians 12:28). To me, it’s pretty simple: God made me to help and serve others. That’s who He made me to be. Once I am clear about that, then it’s much easier to figure out what I am supposed to do—no matter what day it is or what situation I find myself in. If I am clear about my identity in Christ and how God created and gifted me, then it’s a lot easier to connect my Sunday worship to the rest of the week.
Got a difficult problem or relationship at the office? Ask how I can help or serve in that relationship or to help answer that problem. Go to the car shop and find the owner struggling? Talk to him and pray for him, and that helps him. Have a child in need? Stop what I’m doing and meet their need—and that helps them.
My wife is a “quality time” gal—so take her out for a cup of coffee or sit on the porch, drink tea and talk—and she’s helped and encouraged. See a homeless person on the side of the road? Give them a gift card I have in the car for that purpose and tell them I will pray for them. And so on ….
You get the idea? As we focus on who God made us to be, opportunities abound to express the giftedness He has given to us. Then it all fits together—our lives feel “together” or integrated, and not just a disjointed bunch of tasks and activities.
So, what does God want you to be? How did He create you and gift you? And how can you apply that as you work to integrate Sunday worship with the rest of our weekday world?