I recently heard someone on the radio say that he couldn't wait to hear God's first words to him in heaven: "Well done." This is a reference to Jesus' parable in Matthew 25, in which a master entrusts money to his servants to invest while the master is away. Those who invest well receive the master's commendation when he returns: "Well done, you good and faithful servant."
Lots of Christians serve God with enthusiasm and energy, hoping to hear those two words. Of course we want to use our resources well, to be good stewards. We Americans are achievers, and we want to achieve all we can for Jesus. We want him to be proud of us. We want him to wonder what he would do without us. We want to earn his respect.
Some of us may wonder if we are doing enough. What if Jesus doesn't give us the high five of superior production? What if we could have done better?
Sadly, the truth is that we all could have done better. Uh oh. Maybe we idolize those words of congratulations from Jesus. Maybe we really want to worship our resumes, and get God to follow us on Instagram. We achievers want some by-God recognition, especially there in heaven where everybody's watching.
Could we be missing the point?
I'm not sure that Jesus will tell me, "Well done." I have certainly not maximized achievement with the resources given to me. And frankly, I don't especially want to hear that from him.
The two words I long to hear from Jesus are: