Whatever You Do
Do everything in life with enthusiasm for the Lord. Enthusiasm is catching, but so is grumbling. Commit your tasks to God, pray over them and He will bless you in the process.
Alright, thank you very much. And hello again, radio friends, how in the world are you? Yes, it’s your friend, Dr. Cook, and we’re back again, looking at the Word of God.
Come with me to Mark chapter 14. We have to wind up our study of the story of the poured-out perfume before we go on. And there was one point that I wanted especially to look at with you. When all of this grumbling that was going on… By the way, grumbling is contagious just as enthusiasm is contagious. You could have an illustration of it in the apostle Paul, who as he stood on the heaving deck of a boat that was soon to sink and break up in the waves, said, “There stood by me this night the angel of God, whose I am and whom I serve.” He said, “Nobody’s gonna be lost from this ship.” So he said, “Have some breakfast, put on the coffeepot.” And the confidence that he expressed said they felt better about it and they all had a bite to eat before the ship ran aground.
Surely enough, God’s Word was fulfilled and nobody was injured and they all got to shore safely, and Paul was the hero of the day, even though he was a prisoner on his way to Rome. Enthusiasm is contagious. If you get an idea of the will of God, what it is, and you’re sold out to it and you say, “Let’s do it,” you’ll find that other people come along with you. You’ll always have people to come with you if you are sold on doing the will of God and enthusiastic about it. The person who says, “Oh, this is terrible. It’s so hard, so difficult, I don’t know if we can do it,” you won’t have anybody coming with you. But if you’re enthusiastic, you’ll find plenty of people coming to help you.
Now grumbling and… Their obverse side of that is grumbling. Grumbling also is contagious. Judas is the one that started this, but it said there were some among them. See, likewise, also said, “they all,” is another passage you’ll find in another Gospel. To start something in grumbling, you find that it grows. Well, I’ve seen that in the 23 years I was president of the college. Some student would grumble about something or other and others would join in, and pretty soon, there’d be a groundswell of grumbling about a matter that really wasn’t all that important but it was something to grumble at. Grumbling and complaining is contagious. Now let’s not, you and I, let’s not be the people to spread that kind of contagion. “A merry heart doeth good like a medicine.” A cheerful approach to life and an enthusiastic doing of God’s will is something that is far more beneficial and it also is catching. Enthusiasm is catching, grumbling and complaining and griping is catching. Don’t you spread the wrong kind of thing. Good idea?
Well, the Lord Jesus said, “Let her alone. Why trouble you her?” Don’t pick on her. “She hath wrought a good work on me. You have the poor with you always and whensoever ye will, you may do them good. But me, ye have not always. She hath done what she could.” Now there’s the second thing he says about her. The first thing is, she did something for me. Second, she did what she could. Third, she came beforehand to anoint my body to the burying. The fact is there wasn’t time to carry out the ceremonial anointing of the dead body of the Lord Jesus because the Sabbath day was upon them and they hurriedly wrapped the body in linen and laid it in Joseph’s new tomb because they didn’t want to desecrate the Sabbath day. Do you remember reading that?
Nobody had a chance, and so, early, on the first day of the week, these dear followers of the Lord Jesus came bearing spices. They were gonna anoint the body now, do what they could. But He was risen, of course. Well, here she had believed.
See, now remember, it doesn’t say much about what she said. But the Lord… She had been hearing what the Lord Jesus said about his resurrection. He’ll be killed and the third day, rise again. She must have heard some of these discourses. And now, she says, “Well, I won’t get a chance. I may not get a chance to anoint his body when he dies and before He is risen again from the dead, so I’ll do it now.” “She has come beforehand to anoint my body to the bury.” Yes, these women that came the first day of the week, it said, “carrying spices to anoint the body.” Never got a chance to do it, He was gone, risen. Mary did it in faith, in time.
Small thought here. When you obey God in faith on any matter, you’re in time. I look back in my own life, there’s times when I think, “Oh, boy, if I had only thought of that in time. If I had only done that sooner,” so on. Do you have that kind of thoughts, some of you? Of course we do. But the truth is that when you obey God on a matter, in faith, when you take God at His word and do something because He tells you to, beloved, you’re in time. Never too late when you’re obeying God. Isn’t that a great thought?
Well, now, he said, “She hath wrought a good work on me,” that’s number one. “She hath done what she could,” number two. “She came beforehand in faith to anoint my body to the burying.” Three things, he said about Mary. You wanna think about that with me? It said, “She has done something, a good work on me.” Now I suppose, although it’s difficult, one of the best exercises in which you and I could engage would be to examine periodically the reason for what we do religiously.
Why do I go to Sunday school? Why do I attend church? Why do I sing in the choir? Why am I preaching that sermon? Why am I ushering? Why am I treasurer or trustee or deacon? Why am I singing that solo or making that house call? Or whatever it may be. Why? Well, you say, “I wanna serve the Lord.” Yes, I know. But down deep, way down deep where you, the real you, lives, why are you doing it? Jesus said, “She did it for me. She hath wrought a good work on me.” Now you had the crowd, you had the perfume, you had the cost, you had the actual act of lavishing that expensive perfume on the Lord Jesus, you had the effect of it in the house. Everybody was enjoying the odor of the perfume, the fragrance of it. All of these different circumstances surrounding that act, but he said, “She did it. She wrought a good work on me. She did it for me.”
All I’m saying is let’s be sure, you and I, that what we do is done not for ourselves or for the approbation or evaluation of others, but for the Lord Jesus Christ. See, that’s what Paul says, “Whatever you do in word or deed, do it heartily, as for the Lord, and not just for people.” Colossians 3:23. “Do it for the Lord, not just for people. Knowing that of the Lord, ye shall receive the reward of the inheritance for ye served the Lord Christ.” That’s how Paul put it. Make sure that what you’re doing, you’re doing for Jesus.
Oh, by the way, it doesn’t have to be religious. Going back to that passage in Colossians, “whatever you do in word or deed.” “Whatever you do in word or deed.” Can you do secular things for Jesus? Yes, you can. You’re driving a truck… We’ve got a number of truck drivers that write to me, they listen to the broadcast. I’m so glad. That’s one of my frustrated ambitions, I’ve always wished I knew how to drive one of those big 18-wheelers. [chuckle] But if you’re driving a truck, mister, can you do it for Jesus? Yes, the answer is yes, you can. And many do.
Yes, can you do an operation if you’re a surgeon? A delicate operation that may take six or eight hours or more? And as you open up that body and do what is necessary and then with those tiny, tiny stitches, sew up that incision and take care of the patient and see him or her safely through, can you do all of that for Jesus? Not for the fee, not for the patient, not for the reputation you may gain as a successful surgeon in that field, but for Jesus, can you do it that way? Yes. And many do. I have some dear friends who are in the medical field, who are living proof that what they do is for the Lord Jesus Christ.
“She hath wrought a good work on me. She did it for me,” he said. Can you say that of your life? It doesn’t have to be religious. What you do cannot, cannot always be religious. Sometimes I say jokingly, if you arrive at work in the morning singing ‘Holy, Holy, Holy’ at the top of your voice, the men in white coats will have you before 11:00 AM. There are some situations in which you cannot be officially religious. But thank God you can always be Christian and thank God you can always do what you do as unto the Lord, for Him, for His reward, for His ‘well done,’ for His supervision. Ah, yes, you can, and many of you do, thank God. “She hath wrought a good work on me.”
How do you go about doing a non-religious thing for Jesus? Number one, you commit yourself as you are to him. Turn yourself over to the Lord in faith, the whole package of you, that is, with your skills and abilities or lack of same. You give yourself to Him, that then involves what you do. And as you approach any given task, commit that task to the Lord. Mary la Batalia said to me many years ago, this would be back in 1940-something, I said to her, “Mary, don’t you get bored working at that machine all day long?” And she said, “Why pastor, as I sit there I just say, ‘Jesus, I’m doing this for you,’ and I don’t get bored.” Oh, yes, she was operating an automatic machine, all she did was to sit there and watch it spew out millions of tiny little cap screws that were used in… Because those were warriors, used in the manufacture of bomb fuses. But she said, “Jesus, I’m doing this for you.”
Would you try that today? Number one, give yourself to Christ as you are in faith? Number two, pray over each task and say, “Lord I wanna do this for you.” He’ll bless you and bless you and bless you and bless you, I promise.
Dear Father, today, may we be found doing what we do for our blessed Lord, I pray in His name, Amen.
Till I meet you once again by a way of radio, walk with the King today and be a blessing!
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