I love the old preacher story about Jim, a guy who became so downhearted that he couldn’t motivate himself to do anything. So, out of sheer boredom he decided to end it all by jumping off a nearby bridge. His friend, Tom, who had become suspicious, followed Jim, and jumped into the river after him to save him. Neither man had thought things through. Jim didn’t factor in his excellent swimming skills, and Tom didn’t factor in his complete inability to stay afloat. Feeling sorry for his friend who was drowning for his sake, the would-be suicide forgot himself and saved his friend. Thus, seeing that life was not completely without love and purpose, Jim decided to do good with his life.
Everyone loses the plot to one degree or another. But take care how far you wander from the fold. For such a dire need will not always be flung in your direction to snap you back into reality.
It goes without saying that Christians must stay close to each other. It is together that we motivate one another to love and good deeds (see Heb.10:24-25).
Saying, “It’s not my job,” is no justification for isolation. That is just another way of ‘stepping-away’ instead of ‘stepping-up’ for Jesus.
Also, if being in the public eye, or wanting public recognition is the main motivation for ‘stepping-up,’ then the point has been lost completely. Instead, the disciple of Christ takes warning and hope when he reads: “Whoever exalts himself shall be humbled; and whoever humbles himself shall be exalted” (Mt.23:12).
The devil is on a short leash and is running out of time. So, the last thing he wants to see you doing is putting the needs of others above your own. When unable to dissuade you, he will default to his standard modus operandi—he will appeal to your pride.
That is why Paul is so blunt when he says: ““Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves; do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others” (Phil.2:3-4).
Stepping-up is claiming the job!