Luke 12:35, “Get dressed for service and keep your lamps burning;”
Call of Duty is a popular video game that simulates the infantry and combined arms warfare of World War II. It is also a legal term describing the necessity to carry out a job or duty. While I enjoy playing video games, I have come to realize that there is a weight of responsibility that comes with being a Christ follower. Not everyone who prays a “prayer of Salvation” or calls themselves “Christian”, or goes to church will be a part of God’s Kingdom.
In Luke 12, Jesus gives a stern warning against greed. As I read this, I tuned in closely because materialism is a huge problem where we live. The sad thing is that most church-goers are blind to their struggle with this problem. Not only does materialism & greed dominate personal lives, but it has seeped into the seems of many mainline churches. From the moment you enter a parking lot in some of these places, it becomes apparent that they have a “cruise ship” mentality rather than a “battleship” mentality. There is a world of difference.
In this passage, Jesus reminds us not to be obsessed with the materials of this world. Churches and individuals who build their ministry with a cruise ship platform will eventually sink. All material investments eventually go bad and get worn out. Trends come and go like whirlwinds. Our primary concern should be about God’s Kingdom. Jesus was teaching his disciples to stay focused on their responsibilities and that the needs of life will be supplied to meet the demands of duty (Lk 12:29-31).
But more than that we have been given a call of duty. If there is something that anyone should not miss, this is it! Luke 12:35 says, “Get dressed for service and keep your lamps burning;” In the Greek, it better renders,“Let your loins be girded,” an idiom referring to the practice of tucking the ends of the long cloak (outer garment) into the belt to shorten it in preparation for activities like running, journeying or being employed in any labor. We are to be working servants of Christ.
Additionally, Jesus said to keep our lamps burning. That is, make sure we are ready and waiting. Christianity is not about laboring in vain. We are on a battleship working and carrying out our duties watching for the return of Christ when he comes to establish His Kingdom. We are to be waiting servants of Christ.
As I evaluate my life, I hope to grow to be a more faithful steward of Christ. Upon further reading in Luke 12, one will find that Jesus goes on to talk about what happens to unfaithful stewards in His Kingdom. It is not good! I have to ask, “What is distracting me for carrying out my call? How can I be more intentional in how I live as a faithful steward? Am I truly on mission for Christ? How so? What are my spending habits like and how do I use my time? We all need to ask these questions.
The Christian life is a missional life. Are you fulfilling your call of duty?