by Allison Martin
Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect: but I follow after, if that I may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ Jesus. Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.
If you’ve ever spent any time procrastinating on Pinterest, this title probably sounds familiar. “You Had One Job”- it’s a phrase usually accompanied by pictures of people who totally (and hilariously) failed at the main task they were responsible for. In other words, they completely missed the point. To say that the Apostle Paul was a busy man would be an understatement. His schedule was completely booked. Despite all the dreams and desires on his to-do list, Paul realized that he really only had one job. His mission was to put the past behind (both failures and accomplishments), and pursue after the will of God. (Philippians 3:12-14) These weren’t just empty words. Paul’s heritage and accomplishments as a Pharisee earned him the respect of both his family and the religious community. But after his encounter on the Damascus Road, everything changed. He made decisions that weren’t popular, and his life went in a direction that nobody was expecting. From the world’s perspective, pursuing the will of God cost him everything. But from heaven’s perspective, Paul was fulfilling what he had been created to do all along. His early education, background in church, and even the fact that he had Roman citizenship were all orchestrated by God. Paul came face to face with the will of God- that place where our gifts and background meet with the chance to change eternity. And as we all do, he had a choice to make. He had a lot of things he could do, but only one job. That is, to find God’s will and do it. That isn’t to say that your life culminates in one extraordinary task that, after having accomplished it, you can say, “I did the will of God.” In fact, God’s will is more often small, daily choices than major, life changing ones (though there are plenty of those too). We need to be reminded of our main task at hand, because we live in a world of constant pressure. It seems that everyone has an opinion on what we should do with our lives and the decisions we make. The pressure is outward and inward, sometimes outright and sometimes subtle. It can come from strangers on social media, well meaning friends and family, or just the expectations we have of ourselves. If we aren’t careful, the pressure to appear a success could lead to the greatest failure of all. People may not support or understand when you follow after the will of God. Where He leads you may not be on everyone’s agenda for your life. But remember, one day you will stand before God, alone, and answer to Him for the job He gave you to do. There will be no one to point a finger at, or blame for the choices you made. If you spent your life pursuing His plan for you, every sacrifice will seem as nothing. And if you didn’t, it will seem unthinkable that you choose anything over the will of God. When you stand before the throne, it won’t matter how many houses you acquired, how much money you made, how successful you seemed, or how proud people were of you. In that moment, only the words of your Creator will matter. Let us live to hear them. “You had one job. Well done.”