Last Friday was our last M.O.P.S. (Mothers of Preschoolers) meeting of the year. We had an incredible time sharing of all the good that had occurred over the last 9 months through this organization. I had the privilege of being on the Steering Team & loved serving in that capacity. This made the year even more special for me.
Maybe you are wrapping up some things, too.
Moms, how many more days of school lunches do you have to pack?
Teachers, are you counting down the days until you can stop creating lesson plans?
College or grad student, have you turned in that last paper or taken your final exams of the semester?
As you look to the end, I want to remind you to finish well.
No doubt you began the year just like we did with M.O.P.S.- full of high hopes, anticipation & excitement for all that would come. Now, with only a few days or weeks left, you might be tired and ready for it to just be over. But instead of coasting to the end, I want to challenge you sprint. Anyone can start well, but the true test comes near the finish line. Will you finish well?
Now is not the time to give up. Now is the time to dig deep, persevere & finish strong.
Why? Because it’s important.
1. It’s important for your own personal integrity & conscience. You will know if you gave up. And you don’t want to start the summer with that guilt and defeat.
2. It’s important because someone else is probably counting on you to come through with your best. They will be effected by how well you do at the end. Love them by pushing through & giving it your all.
3. It’s also important because it matters to God. He gave you a task & it means something to Him for you to complete that task with excellence. By leaning into Him for strength to persevere & finish well, you can make God look good, as He is. And as everyone else is slacking off, you will stand out by not only reaching the finish line, but by getting there with excellence. Give God the glory for that. He can do that in you by the power of the Holy Spirit & will say to you on that day, “Well done, my good & faithful servant.”
Jesus’ Example of Finishing Well
You know, Jesus Himself had His own assignment from the Father & He took it pretty seriously. He could have given up at the end, which was the most challenging part for Him. But He didn’t. He saw it through, and with His faithfulness & determination to obey the Father, He was able to purchase our redemption.
~Finishing the task was as necessary as eating to Jesus. He said, “My food is to do the will of him who sent me and to accomplish his work” (John 4:34). This was His solemn perspective on obedience. It mattered.
~Then on the night that He washed the disciples’ feet and before He was betrayed, we see a glimpse of one aspect of His task. John 13:1 says, “Now before the Feast of the Passover, when Jesus knew that his hour had come to depart out of this world to the Father, having loved his own who were in the world, he loved them to the end.” He did not slack off. He continued loving them, right up the end.
~John 17 records His high priestly prayer, also before He went to the cross. In verse 4 Jesus prays, “I glorified you on earth, having accomplished the work that you gave me to do.” His conscience is clear. He accomplished the work.
~And finally, we see on the cross the culmination of Jesus’ obedience. As He hung on the cross, determined to obey the Father to the fullest extent, He said, “It is finished.” And immediately after that, He gave up His Spirit. We see the Father’s validation of Jesus’ finished work 3 days later when He rises from the grave.
So, let me close by introducing you to my friend, Laura (3rd from the right below), who did not give up at the end of the M.O.P.S. year. She was a leader at her table of moms, and she was determined to love her mothers of preschoolers to the end, just like Jesus did. She could have fizzled out here at our last meeting, but instead she worked with love & excellence by creating a unique painting for each one of us with our favorite verse. She did it with joy, and God was glorified through her!
So, my friends, you are almost there! Ask the Lord to give you strength to pack those lunch boxes with joy, to write those last lesson plans with thankfulness or to finish that paper with excellence. You can do it as you depend on Him!