People say we're not under the law; we are under grace, but grace doesn't mean that we do nothing. In the Law, we were on our own, but in grace, He does it with us! We have two types of people in the church today. One who says God will do everything and another who thinks they can do it all in their flesh.
Neither is the way. Jesus is the way, but we must walk in the way. Jesus can lead the horse to drink, but the horse has to drink. The pillar of fire and the cloud by day led the Israelites, but they had to follow. This is a dance. Many in the church want Jesus to swing them around like a dead body and perform all the dance moves for them. We have to follow our partner. We have to do what He is doing. We have to keep our eyes on Him, or we will miss a step. We’re expecting Jesus to pick us up and take us to the dance floor, and He puts out His hand, but we must grab it and follow.
The slothful servant sits and waits, but the sons seek out their father. Sons eagerly seek Him, and even when they find Him, they seek more of Him. According to Jesus, Mary was not a slothful servant, but Martha was upset at Mary's lack of servanthood. Martha was making and getting things done, but Jesus told Martha that Mary was choosing the better part.
Read Luke 10:38-42
We always think we are good servants because of all the things we do in the flesh. We go to church, we go to prayer, we even pray when we go, we get in our closet and pray, we preach, we teach, we read the Word, but we still are considered the slothful servant. Even though Martha was doing a lot of labor with her body, she was still spiritually lacking. Jesus told her that she was worried about many things, and it says she was distracted. Many of us are distracted by the religious things we do, but we can't even hear the Lord's voice. We cannot even discern when God moves anymore.
We're lacking in the building of our spiritual man, but in our mind, we think we're growing and going higher in the Spirit, but we don't realize we are becoming more and more dead. Martha thought she was pleasing Jesus by what she was doing, and it may have pleased Him, but Mary was choosing the better thing. To lay at His feet. To hear Him, to seek Him. When you enter into judgment and your works are tested by fire, God is not going to be looking at the work that you did in the flesh. He is going to be looking at the work that He did inside you. Everything else will be burned up. He will be looking for the things that He imparted to you. He will be looking for the things that His Spirit established inside of you. He will be looking for Himself inside of you.
Yet, He can’t speak to us or do anything because we are nowhere to be found. We expect Him to come to us, but we never go to Him. He said, "Come unto me," but we are waiting for Jesus to come to us. We all know that the Holy Spirit doesn't just impart things to us and do things through us without our say. There's a submission, there is a surrender, there is seeking and finding, there is a pursuit after Him that He would come unto us and do what He pleases. There is a plowing of our heart that He would be able to plant seeds. There is a defending of the heart and mind that the enemy would not be able to sow tares. Yet the slothful servant is spiritually sleeping when Jesus says, "Watch and pray."
Many justify themselves by the work they do with their hands, but they don't realize the work has to be done in their heart. The Kingdom of God is a spiritual kingdom. You cannot labor in that Kingdom in the flesh. The labor happens in the Spirit. Some of the manifestations may happen in the flesh, but what we do in the flesh should only show what we are doing in our hearts. If I tell you to examine yourself right now and to check if you are spiritually lazy, and you start thinking about all the things you are doing in the flesh, then you are revealing yourself as a slothful servant.
We think a slothful servant is someone who won't get on their knees or read their Bible or go to church. Yet really, a slothful servant is someone who isn't burning for Him like an inferno, someone who is caring more about the things of this life rather than the things of God, who is more worried and focused on physical things rather than spiritual. Someone who is distracted by the things they do rather than the one who does and says what really matters. We always look at what we are doing and not at what He is doing. We need to have that heart of a bride that burns for her husband, not the bride that expects her husband to serve her. In Genesis, the woman was called to be a helpmate to the man. God was even prophesying then the bride as the helpmate to the bridegroom.
The real laboring and work are that we would work to receive and have more of Him. Many are expecting to receive and have more of Him without the labor. Paul called himself a laborer. There are two sides to laboring in the Kingdom: The laboring of reaping the harvest of souls and the labor of harvesting and building Christ in our hearts. God doesn't just build on us, He tells us to go buy oil. He tells us to come unto Him, He tells us to seek Him, He tells us to come to the waters if we thirst, He tells us to come to buy and eat without money and buy wine and milk without price. He said if we seek wisdom to ask, and it shall be given, seek, and you shall find. See, there's your part, and then there's His part. That's our laboring, to come to Him. To receive from Him. Yet we have to remove the other things, the thorns and thistles, the cares of this life that try to distract us and take us away from His feet.
We are always looking for God to serve us, but we never want to serve Him, and that's why we are dead as bones. Mary was the real servant because for her to serve Him was to know Him. After all, this is the work that He came to establish that the spirit of Elijah would come and return the sons to the father and the father to the sons. She was getting that work done. She was being mended unto the father as she sat at Jesus' feet, asking and seeking as the door was being open to her. She was knocking, and all at the same time, she was climbing higher in the Spirit. The more of Christ that was being imparted to her meant the more of Christ that was going to be imparted to anybody that she would minister to in the future. We are waiting for Jesus to knock on our door, but really! If we say we love Him, why aren't we barreling through His door?
True love serves another, but false love expects to be served. Jesus said He came to serve and not be served, that showed His love for us. Martha was expecting Mary's service but was never even serving the Lord in the better way in the first place. If we didn't know what Jesus said about that, we would call Mary the lazy one. Yet that would only show how carnal we think. The Kingdom is upside down from our thinking. In the world, we fill others to serve and be filled, but in the Kingdom, we are filled to fill others.
The parable of the talents reveals the slothful servant. The one who expected to reap but not sow. The one who expected to receive but not give. This is the slothful servant, the one who waits for God to do something and never does anything. God tells us what to do, seek the Kingdom, and all its righteousness, and all will be added unto you. Yet we think if we "just believe," everything will be added unto us. It's not that we try to do anything in the flesh, it’s that we start doing something in our heart. We can stir up His heart with our hearts.
We think seeking is a work, but seeking is how we find. Seeking is working in the Kingdom. It’s how we harvest the Kingdom in our hearts. Not seeking that we do near the altar with our tears and outward expressions but a real focus and desiring with our hearts to know the secrets of the Kingdom. A deep desire to have our mind in the likeness of Christ. Hunger is the sign of a good servant. Don't look at what you do in the flesh, look at what you are doing in your heart. Where are your eyes?
You can pray and pray fifteen hours a day, but you are not really praying in the better way because when Jesus prayed, He heard from Heaven. He spoke to His Father, and His Father spoke back. His praying and seeking were valid, and He showed that because Heaven heard it and saw it and opened its windows. We always pray and do religious acts just to say we did it. Yet we never do those things for a return from Heaven. When we don't see a return from Heaven we get discouraged and get religious again. Yet the real test to know if you are seeking is if you seek until you find. The slothful servant gets nothing and quits, but the true servant goes after it until he gets its, just like Elijah, a true laborer, who stood in the gap of prayer until the rain came. Every time he saw nothing, he got back in the gap until he saw something.
This is the one that will reap because they will receive when they seek because their seeking never ceases. You don't find it because you don't seek, and you are never given because you never ask. You never turn to Him in anything. You say He supplies all that I need, but when you're in need, you try to supply for yourself.
You say He's the apple of your eyes, but all you think about is work, kids, school, friends, family, but never Him. The world will esteem you as a hardworking person, but the Kingdom will never know you. Just like the one that did works, that cast out demons and healed the sick, but they never laid at the feet of Jesus. They never hear what says the Spirit of God. They did what they thought was right, but they lacked the Word of the Lord and the heart of the Father.
There are people that rarely get on their knees and may not read their Bible every day, but they know Him and are filled with Him. Even knowing the Bible and doing the things of the Bible can still make you servant-less in the Kingdom. Yet to religion, you seem like the servant of all, but to God, you are not a servant because how can you serve Him if you don't know Him. You have to know Him to serve Him. To be first, you have to be last, making yourself of no importance and making Him first in your life.
It's not just doing what the scriptures say. If we know Him and serve Him, the scripture should be confirming what we do. God, Himself, is our foundation, and the scripture is a witness of that foundation. Yet we are trying to live by a witness without ever standing on the actual foundation. This is why we are doing everything right but never hit the mark because the mark was Him alone, and I'm on target when I'm in Him.
To serve the Kingdom is to serve Him. He is the King of the Kingdom. To advance in the Kingdom is to let the King advance in me. This is a servant of the Kingdom, the one who puts themselves on a platter and says, “God, do whatever you want with me." Many want to do things for God, but they don't want God to do anything to them. We think we can serve the master and still have our own life apart from Him like a servant would in the world. Yet to really serve Him is to give myself to Him and say, "Do whatever you want." A servant in the Kingdom doesn't just mean "do whatever the master wants." In the Kingdom, it means to let the master do whatever He wants to you. My life is not my own. Form me, shape me, that the servant will look like his master, and in the end, He will say, “Well done, good and faithful servant.”
By Joe Pinto
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