Friday, January 29, 2021

Daily Devotion: Not Chargeable

Electric eel (Electrophorus electricus). Taken at the New England Aquarium
(Boston, MA, December 2006. Copyright © 2006 
Steven G. Johnson 
and donated to Wikipedia under GFDL and CC-by-SA.

Bible Reading: II Corinthians 11:7-33

Key Verse: Verse 9 – And when I was present with you, and wanted, I was chargeable to no man: for that which was lacking to me the brethren which came from Macedonia supplied: and in all things I have kept myself from being burdensome unto you, and so will I keep myself.

Key Words: I was chargeable to no man

The word chargeable in our text literally means “to go numb.” The word comes from the image of the electric eel numbing its victims with its electrical shock. As you well know, being numbed is a burden to its victim. Paul is saying, “I’ve not used any tricks to catch the believers by surprise. I have been open and honest in all my dealings.”

In my own travels, I have seen situations in churches that have broken my heart. I have seen congregations show little or no appreciation to or for their pastor who was laboring and sacrificing to see the church grow. Some of these men were underpaid and some were overworked. Yet many in the church couldn’t care less.

To the faithful pastor, I give the following illustration.

I once heard Dr. W. A. Criswell tell about the faithful missionary couple who returned to the United States on the same ship that brought Teddy Roosevelt home from a safari in Africa. Many reporters and photographers were on the dock, waiting to see Roosevelt and interview him and take pictures; but nobody was on hand to welcome home the veteran missionaries who had spent their lives serving Christ in Africa.

That evening, in their modest hotel room, the couple reviewed their arrival in New York City; and the husband was somewhat bitter.

“’It isn’t fair,’ he said to his wife. ‘Mr. Roosevelt comes home from a hunting trip, and the whole country is out to meet him. We get home after years of service, and nobody was there to greet us.’

But his wife had the right answer: ‘Honey, we aren’t home yet.’

What to do:

✞ To the congregation: If you have a faithful, hard- working pastor, love him.

✞ To the pastor: Don’t be discouraged; you’re not home yet.

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