Unfinished Business

September 18, 2005

We all know what it’s like, don’t we? All of us have unfinished things cluttering up the highway of life:

  • the half-mowed lawn
  • the half-read book
  • the letter started but never sent
  • the abandoned diet
  • the degree we never finished
  • the phone calls never returned

But it can be much more serious than that:

  • the abandoned child
  • the wrecked marriage
  • the bills never paid
  • the promises never kept

We go through life leaving behind a trail of unfinished projects and unfulfilled dreams. How few there are who can come to the end of life and say, “I finished exactly what I set out to do.”

Only one person in history never left behind any unfinished business. His name is Jesus Christ. On the night before his crucifixion, as he prayed with his disciples in the Upper Room, he said to his Father, “I have finished the work which you have given me to do” (John 17:4 NKJV).

Consider the context of those words. When Jesus died, there were many hurting people left in the world.

There were many sick people who were not healed.

There were many who still walked in darkness.

The disciples still did not understand many things.

The “Jesus movement” was just a tiny handful of believers.

Few people in the world had heard his name.

Nothing seemed finished. Everything seemed incomplete. But since Jesus understood his calling, he could truly say, “I have finished the work you gave me.”

A long time ago I heard someone say that God’s will is never done and God’s will is always done. It is never done in that after we have done all we can do, there is much more that needs to be done. That is true whether you live 20 years or 90 years. It is always done because God gives each of us a small part of the big job. We do our part and then someone else comes and continues where we left off. The key is to understand God’s calling on your life and to do all you can, while you can, where you can. And also to know that it doesn’t all depend on you. You can’t always tell the end from the beginning. When Jesus left, it looked like his movement might die out. Two thousand years later, over two billion people call him Lord. Be like Jesus. Find out what God wants you do and then go and do it.

Do you have any thoughts or questions about this post?