It is good to love what you do, especially as a ministry in the Lord’s vineyard, but ‘it is best’ you love Jesus. This may initially sound confusing, but we cannot take the love for the ministry to mean the love for Jesus. The two are so close that they might be taken for granted.
While it is possible to love the ministry and not love Jesus, it is not possible to love Jesus and not love His ministry. Based on this, I pray that my love for Jesus will grow fonder than ever before.
Checking the scriptures, particularly John 3:16, “For God SO LOVED the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life,” it is obvious that it was love that made God let go of His only begotten Son. God gave the best of Himself because of His love for the world and I am sure that Jesus accepted the task, obeying the Father, because of His love, not only for the world but for the Father.
The work of salvation was, therefore, initiated and premised on the foundation of love. He 'sooooo' loved the world. It was love, not in small measures, for the world that triggered the idea of salvation. Nothing of God gets done in God’s way if it isn’t initiated by and founded on love.
God did not send His Son having on His mind the need to carry out a revenge mission against the devil. He was not thinking of settling a score with the enemy, but of how to redeem His so loved creation. His love for us paved the way for redemption steps.It shouldn’t be surprising, therefore, seeing Jesus engaging Peter in the following:
So when they had dined, Jesus saith to Simon Peter, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me more than these? He saith unto him, Yea, Lord; thou knowest that I love thee. He saith unto him, Feed my lambs.
16. He saith to him again the second time, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me? He saith unto him, Yea, Lord; thou knowest that I love thee. He saith unto him, Feed my sheep.
17. He saith unto him the third time, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me? Peter was grieved because he said unto him the third time, Lovest thou me? And he said unto him, Lord, thou knowest all things; thou knowest that I love thee. Jesus saith unto him, Feed my sheep. John 21:15-17KJV
Three times Jesus based the feeding of His sheep on the foundation of love. If Peter would do well feeding His sheep, then Peter must do so, because of his love for Jesus and not for the sheep. Mind you, it is possible to love the sheep and not love Jesus. However, it is not possible to love Jesus and not love His sheep.
You may love singing the gospel without necessarily loving Jesus, the essence of the gospel message. People love preaching, expounding the Bible, but not essentially loving Jesus, the central figure of the Bible.
I can feed the Lord’s sheep out of my love for feeding sheep, but not out of loving Jesus. Of course, such a service stands questionable before the Lord. On the other hand, if I truly love the LORD, even if the sheep are so stubborn and unappreciative of my service, I will continue to feed them. I cannot love them less, because I cannot love Jesus less.
Love, therefore, remains the true basis for Christian service. Go ahead and love your ministry, but not more than you love Jesus. Remember the first question to Peter: Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me MORE THAN THESE?
There are THESE (fame, money, recognition, competition) in ministry that a minister of Christ may love, but we cannot afford to love them more than Jesus. In fact, Jesus remains our only love. Let it be that your falling in love with the ministry is as a result of the love you have for Jesus, who because of His death and resurrection, made the ministry happen in the first instance.
My love for Jesus is, therefore, the big reason behind my writing ministry as a means of feeding His sheep. It is my only reason for being actively involved in feeding the Lord’s sheep. If it is not the love for Jesus, my service for the sheep is questionable and my presence in the sheepfold is suspicious.
I, hereby, re-echo the voice of Paul in 1 Corinthians 13:1-13, knowing that the writing ministry I have obtained by divine grace, is nothing without love for His sheep and most importantly, love for Jesus.
Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal. And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge; and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not charity, I am nothing. And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, and have not charity, it profiteth me nothing. 1 Cor. 13:1-3