January 7, 2010
God Loveth Adverbs
READ: Colossians 3:8-17
But we have the mind of Christ. —1 Corinthians 2:16
The Puritans wisely sought to connect all of life to its source in God, bringing the two worlds together rather than dividing them into sacred and secular. They had a saying, “God loveth adverbs; and careth not how good, but how well.” Adverbs describe verbs—our words of action and activity. The proverb implies that God cares more about the spirit in which we live than the concrete results.
Pleasing God doesn’t mean that we must busy ourselves with a new set of “spiritual” activities. As the Puritans said, whether cleaning house or preaching sermons, shoeing horses or translating the Bible, any human activity may constitute an offering to God.
We spend much time immersed in the mundane. “But we have the mind of Christ,” Paul reminds us (1 Cor. 2:16). That truth is to guide everything we do. Caring for an elderly parent. Cleaning up after a child. Sitting on a porch with a neighbor. Fielding a customer’s complaint. Filling out patient charts at a nurses’ station. Sitting in traffic. Sawing lumber. Reporting tips. Shopping for groceries.
We need faith and the mind of the Lord Jesus to recognize something of lasting value in even our most ordinary tasks. — Philip Yancey
In the common round of duty
Lift thy heart in praise;
For the Lord hath surely promised
Strength for all thy days. —Tovey
The world crowns success; God crowns faithfulness!