The Quality of Quantity

Kerosene or two stroke did the job perfectly. Whenever we went camping my mates and I would always bring a can of fuel to get the fire instantly roaring.

We'd settle into our deck chairs to enjoy a long night that would usually involve diving into the depths of conversation while staring into the flames, emptying the contents of the packed esky into our stomachs and the periodical trip over the dunes to the beach and back. Although there was a steady flow of wood that kept the fire going throughout the night, we also threw all kinds of interesting things into the flames to watch how (and if) they would burn.

At the crack of dawn we'd crawl out of our tents and re-stoke the fire to cook up a home made bacon and egg McMuffin before paddling out into the icy fresh surf. As we packed up our tents and loaded up the car we would examine the fire place to see what items had survived.

Although we loaded up the fire with wood, empty containers and the large box we had to Tetris into the limited car space, it was all completely reduced to nothing but a pile of ash. It's the quality of a material that will cause it to survive in the long run, not the quantity.

There will come a day when everything we do on earth will be put through the flames to test the quality of our work:

'If anyone builds… using gold, silver, costly stones, wood, hay or straw, their work will be shown for what it is because… the fire will test the quality of each person's work. If what has been built survives, the builder will receive a reward' – 1 Corinthians 3:11-14 (NIV)

In this verse the word 'work' means a 'deed (action) that carries out (completes) an inner desire (intension, purpose)' (HWS); or in other words, the way you live out your God-given sense of call or destiny.

It's at this point that we each have a decision. Will we aim to live a life of great quantity or great quality? Because matter how much you achieve or how 'high' you climb, if your work lacks real substance you will end up with a pile of ash. However if you set yourself to value quality no matter how large or small your work is, it will survive the fire and you will receive your reward!


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