I had a good laugh during the recent PastorServe Haiti pastor’s conference. Posted at the reception desk of the hotel was a sign promoting tennis lessons for a mere $5 per hour. The sign read, “Tennis instructor available 24/7. $5 per hour. Please contact reception for reservation.”
I let the receptionist know that I wanted to take advantage of this amazing offer.
“Great,” she exclaimed, “what time would you like your lesson?”
“3 AM” I replied.
“But our only tennis instructor is not available at 3 AM. Is there another time that would work for you?”
With a big smile on my face, I pushed a little harder.
“But your advertisement says the instructor is available 24/7. That’s why I asked for a 3 AM lesson. Because that’s my only break during this conference and it says right here that he is always available.”
“Come on Mr. Dodd”, she replied (also smiling), “No one is available 24/7”.
How true that is! No one single person is available 24/7. No one is always available 24/7 to take your call, respond to your questions and meet all your needs. While we have a 24/7 help line at PastorServe (877-918-4746), we know there are times when the team will be unavailable (I confess that we are addicted to this weird phenomenon known as sleep).
One powerful reality that should bring pastors (and all believers) great hope, comfort and peace is this profound theological truth: God is available 24/7. He is always at work.
John 5:17 says, “Jesus said to them, “My Father is always at his work to this very day, and I too am working.”
This is an incredible promise bringing encouragement, comfort, and hope. God is unceasingly at work. Jesus is continually at work. The Holy Spirit is perpetually at work. Lamentations 3:22 promises us that the Lord’s loving kindnesses never cease. His compassions never fail. Deuteronomy 11:12 tells us that the eyes of the Lord are always on the land for which the Lord cares. Psalm 54:4 reminds us that the Lord is our sustainer.
Last night, while you slept, the Lord, once again, was up all night. God has no need for sleep. Psalm 121:3-4 says, “He will not let your foot slip – he who watches over you will not slumber; indeed, he who watches over Israel will neither slumber nor sleep.” He didn’t sleep because He is always at work. Last night – the Lord never left his watch. He never slipped away to catch a nap (Psalm 132:4). Even as God rested on the seventh day of creation, he was sustaining all of creation.
Taking this truth an additional step – because God is sovereign (Job 42:2, Psalm 115:3, Psalm 135:6, Luke 1:37), how much of his attention can he specifically give to you? All of his attention! And how often can he give you all of his attention? All of the time! Impossible you say! Exactly! Matthew 19:26 reminds us that that “with people this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.”
Here is a superlative truth: God is always able to give you his undivided attention – all of the time. He works 24/7, on every difficulty, each individual problem and all challenges that impact you in any and every way because God is always at work.
You are not the answer to the cultural challenges we all face day to day. Jesus is the answer to every challenge in America and around the world – and he is diligently working – 24/7/365. God is forever, unendingly, incessantly, relentlessly at work! God is always at work. Thank God!
The practical application? Take a day off! Enjoy a vacation. The weight of the world (and your church) is not on your shoulders. The Lord is doing just fine bearing that weight.
You can rest – because God doesn’t rest.
You can recharge your batteries – because God never needs to recharge his batteries.
You can take a vacation with your family – because God is never on vacation.
You can find a break in your day for some alone time – because God is never in need of alone time.
Sleeping, resting, sabbathing and vacationing are an acknowledgement of your trust in the truth of the Word of God – that indeed, He is always at work.