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June 11 – Trophies, Medals, and Recognition

If you want a job, you have to have a resumé, don’t you? There are classes you can take to learn how to make your resumé more appealing. Your resumé is supposed to tell all about your strengths and your experiences. It’s designed to “sell” you to the person who does the hiring. There are, of course, some pretty bad resumés. After looking up resumé hints and tips, and bad resumés, there are a number of things to remember. 1) Don’t use illegal activities you may have engaged in as part of your work history. 2) Tell the truth on your resumé. Lies catch up to you and help you start looking for jobs again. 3) Video game proficiency is not a plus on most resumés. 4) Make ‘em short. Don’t use War and Peace as a model for your resumé.

The major purpose of a resumé is to get you an interview with the hiring manager. That’s where you get your chance to make a great impression. That’s where you flesh out your work experience and how it will help you in this new job. That’s where you get to brag about yourself. Paul’s “resumé” spoke for itself in the early church. If you read the book of Acts you can see some of the amazing trials and tribulations he endured for the sake of the gospel. If retelling those stories would lead others to Christ, Paul would retell them and constantly remind people that God was working. “I will not venture to speak of anything except what Christ has accomplished through me in leading the Gentiles to obey God by what I have said and done—by the power of signs and wonders, through the power of the Spirit of God. So from Jerusalem all the way around to Illyricum, I have fully proclaimed the gospel of Christ. (Romans 15:18-19)

Paul understood what was important. As he told his story, every part of his story was laced with Jesus working through him. Paul was called to go to the Gentiles and under the guidance and leadership of the Holy Spirit, he did. His words and his deeds, powered by Christ, led Gentiles to obey God in trusting Jesus. Paul wasn’t sidetracked by political concerns or thoughts of material wealth. His goal, his call, was to proclaim the gospel of Christ. He accomplished that goal. He suffered much in his mission. He was beaten, imprisoned, left for dead, shipwrecked, and run out of just about every town he visited. He was run out of town, though, because he was faithful to his call. None of these things bothered him in the long run, because they happened due to his faithfulness to God’s call on his life. He mentioned earlier in the book that he was willing to sacrifice his life and even his salvation for the Jews to come to know Christ. He lived that commitment each day he walked this earth.

That type of commitment is convicting to me. I get sidetracked too easily. I may plan to talk with someone about Jesus, but I get distracted and forget, or worse, I begin wondering what the other person may think about me and I shrink back in fear, not willing to move beyond my fears to bring the words of life to a person who needs to know the mercy and love of God. I get embroiled in discussions that have nothing to do with the gospel so that I can make myself look good at the expense of others when God wants them to experience His goodness at the expense of Christ. I brag about myself and my accomplishments which can be done without the help of God, or I fail to give Him credit for moving in my life. How easy it is to seek honors and awards, trophies and medals; recognition from the world for all we do. In truth, the only recognition that matters is those words: “Well done, thou good and faithful servant.” That recognition will last forever.

Oh Lord, remind me that it’s all about You. Let my words, thoughts, and deeds be done to glorify You.


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