For many days an old farmer had been plowing with an ox and a mule together and working them pretty hard. The ox said to the mule, “Let’s play sick today and rest a little while.” But the old mule said, “No, we need to get the work done for the farmer, because the season is short.” But the ox played sick and the farmer brought him fresh hay and corn and made him comfortable.
When the mule came in from plowing, the ox asked how things went. “Well, we didn’t get as much done today, but we made it all right,” answered the mule. Then the ox asked, “What did the old man say about me?” “Nothing,” replied the mule.
The next day the ox, thinking he had a good thing going, played sick again. When the mule came in from the day’s work he was very tired. The ox asked, “How did it go?” The mule said, “All right I guess, but we didn’t get much accomplished.” Then the ox asked, “What did the old man say about me?” “Nothing to me,” the mule replied, “but he did stop and have a long talk with the butcher.”
Just as every animal has a purpose so does every human. Every living person on the planet has a purpose, place, and position that has been divinely orchestrated, but many, for one reason or other, will not fulfill it. Maybe, like the ox, they are playing games.
Some people are created to be inventors, some are labors, many are helpers, and God has made some apostles and some prophets and some evangelists and some pastors and teachers. God has given every person the innate ability to succeed and help others. Those who implement their purpose have a vision and are fulfilled. But know, no one was made to be a freeloader or a lazy mooch. The many that do meander through life, waste time, and do not execute their God given purpose, become a burden rather than an attribute.
I read that John Audubon, the well-known naturalist and artist, practiced great self-mastery in order to learn more about birds. Counting his physical comforts as nothing, he would rise at midnight night after night and go into the swamps to study certain nighthawks. He would crouch motionless in the dark and fog, hoping to discover just one more fact about a single species.
During one summer, Audubon repeatedly visited the bayous near New Orleans to observe a shy water bird. He would stand almost to his neck in the stagnant waters, scarcely breathing, while poisonous water-moccasin snakes swam past his face. It was not comfortable or pleasant, but he beamed with enthusiasm and is reported to have said, “But what of that? I have the picture of the birds.”
He endured all these things just for the picture of birds. If a man could be so disciplined for pictures, because he felt this was his purpose in life, can you imagine how much better off you’d be if you were all in for your family, your church, and your employer? Many problems today are conducive to not fulfilling our purpose. For more info you can visit us at www.JoyChristianMinistries.com | Back to the blog.
Pastor J.C. Myers, III
Pastor J.C. founded Joy Christian Ministries in 1992. He was Sr. Pastor at Joy Christian Ministries in West Sacramento, California from 1992-2016. He was succeeded by his 2nd son, Pastor Brandon Myers who had been under his father's ministry and teaching for 39 years.