Ashamed When It Counted the Most
by Jonathan S Spurlock
(Holts Summit, MO)
Ashamed when it counted the most
Text: 1 Cor. 3:13 Every man's work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man's work of what sort it is.
I have two younger sisters, who liked to play the piano when they were somewhat younger. They even took music lessons for some time. I like music too, but not all the practicing that goes along with it!
This particular music teacher engineered a “recital” where all of the students in the music class were expected to perform a selection. I don’t know how the selection was made. Each sister spent a LOT of time working on the piece of music she was given, trying to make it perfect.
The day for the recital came. Even though I don’t remember how many students were in the group, I’ll never forget the overall performance. These children were under 12 years of age or so, maybe younger, but each one walked up to the piano or organ and, gave it their best shot. I remember one girl in particular who sat down at the organ, adjusted some of the sliding controls, and played her selection flawlessly. It was like that for just about all of them—except for one of the students.
This student (I won’t say which gender) sat down at the organ, ran some fingers over the keys, looked around, and then in a still, small voice, said, “I don’t know my piece,” then went back to his or her seat.
I can imagine the shame or embarrassment that child must have felt. This was the time when it counted the most, namely, demonstrating his or her mastery of a given piece of music. How long had he or she known, though, that “show time” was approaching? Did the child have time to practice? Was it just stage fright? We’ll never know the feelings that child experienced, but I’m sure that shame was one of them.
We as believers are going to “face the music”, too, one day. Every believer is going to give an account of his or her deeds before the Lord Jesus Christ. The “package” of our works, deeds, tries, accomplishments, what have you, will be evaluated by fire (see 1 Corinthians 3). Paul gave some very sobering words, when he said that if we build with wood, hay, or stubble (grass that had been cut!), the materials would be burned up. If we used quality materials, like gold, silver, or precious stones, our works would remain and we would receive a reward.
None of us needs to be ashamed when it counts. Sure, there might be other recitals for a piano class for music students. While we live, every believer can change his “building materials” and choose quality over everything else. After all, isn’t that what matters? Once this package is complete, there’s no going back. Why not make a change for the positive today?
Scripture quotations taken from the King James Version of the Bible