Taking our ‘little’ and investing it in His kingdom
Tasmin Little is a superb classical violinist, and can play anywhere, anytime she chooses. She is acclaimed the world over for her abilities. She also conducts orchestras as well. At 42, Tasmin is a classical music star. But what makes her unique in her marketing of her music is that she believes in her music so much, that she gives it away.
You can go to her website, www.tasminlittle.org.uk and download an entire performance. She has something called her “Three Step Program.”
Listen to my spoken introduction and download my CD.
Take some time to listen and get to know these pieces. Then write to me and tell me what you like (or don’t like) about each piece.
Go to a concert, buy a CD or write and tell me what barriers still remain to prevent you from wanting to do either!
Now before I make too much of a hero of Dame Little, I have no idea of her faith or her lifestyle. But what I do see is someone who bucks the norm and believes SO MUCH in her discipline, she thinks nothing of simply giving it away.
The deal breaker is that there is no entitlement – no credit. But in Christianity today, we so easily adapt to the fact that when we give of ourselves – even a little – coveting praise is OK. But can you imagine if we did the things that Christ tells us, and didn’t care about receiving the credit – or the outcome to us? Fact of the matter, we need to take the “little” that the Lord gave us and invest it in His Kingdom.
Also understand that nothing we have is ours to keep. Missionary Jim Eliot knew this when he wrote in his journal on Oct. 28, 1949, expressing his belief that missions work was more important than his life. “He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain that which he cannot lose.” (You are no doubt familiar with this martyr if you’ve seen, End of the Spear, or Through the Gates of Splendor.)
In fact in the book by his widow, Elisabeth Eliot, Discipline, The Glad Surrender, Elisabeth talks of what Jim wrote in her yearbook:
“When I was in college, it was the custom when the yearbook came out to ask one’s friends to autograph it . . . when a girl asked for the autograph of a man she admired, she secretly hoped for some clue to his feelings toward her in the words that he wrote. Jim Eliot signed his name in my Wheaton Tower and added only a Scripture reference: 2 Timothy 2:4.
“A soldier on active service will not let himself be involved in civilian affairs; he must be wholly at his commanding officer’s disposal.”
That was loud and clear to Elisabeth, wasn’t it?
You see, whether in the arts, such as Tasmin, or in service to the King, as is the case with Eliot, we find that to really make an impact on our culture and our world is to give what we have received all away. That may be virtuosity, or that may mean our very life.
What is it that you and I have been given that we now must share for the Kingdom-work?
“Yet indeed I also count all things loss for the excellence of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them as rubbish, that I may gain Christ ,” Phil. 3:8 (NKJV). (John Francis is the worship specialist for the Missouri Baptist Convention and produces MoWorship, a monthly worship podcast available at www.mobaptist.org/worship.)