“For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.” — Mark 10:45
I remember choosing my one word for 2019 during a morning walk in January: serve. I love when God chooses to remind me of it. It’s so easy to focus on my wants and my needs. Serving is the exact opposite. Serving is about others. Today’s verse reminds us of exactly why Jesus came to this earth. He came to serve. He came to die. It wasn’t about Him. It was about His Father. It was about you. It was about me.
“If serving is too big for you, then you are too small to lead.” Too many of us can tend to let our title get in the way of serving. It’s not about the title; it’s about the towels. Our titles are not important, it’s our testimony. I can remember always being taught to not be afraid of doing the small jobs. The unattractive and so-called insignificant duties. Serving requires humility. I recently read, “Christians who have been in church for years are often not at church to wash someone’s feet — they’re just there to eat.” God doesn’t call us to just show up and sit in the pews to soak it all in. God calls us to surrender our lives to Him and to serve Him.
Pastor Tony Evans tells us, “God doesn’t just want to do miracles that exclude you, He wants to do miracles that include you.” That’s what serving will do. God uses you and makes you part of the miracle. Help that neighbor with his yard work; choose to wake up early on a Saturday to help that co-worker pack the U-Haul to help his family move; greet and shake hands on Sunday morning; take the time to hear the kids say their memory verses at night. Act before you are asked. See a need and then step up and do it.
Works are the fruit of salvation, not the root of salvation. We serve not so we can be saved; we are saved so we should want to serve. I believe God called us to be great. He doesn’t want us to be average Christians or even good Christians. I believe He wants us to strive for excellence. He wants us to be holy. Author John Maxwell says, “To be truly great we must give up our ego and serve others. That’s when you are truly great.”
Jesus, our greatest example of servant-leadership, on the night He was going to be betrayed, provides the greatest example of serving. He chose to wash his disciples’ feet that night in the upper room. He humbled Himself and got down on His knees to perform one of the dirtiest and ugliest tasks: wash someone else’s feet. He had no pride. It wasn’t about Him. It was about the disciples. It was about others. It was about serving. Serving is loving. It has no agenda and doesn’t keep a record of “you owe me now.”
In following Jesus and claiming to be a disciple or Christian, we must do what He did. We must be willing to serve. God’s Word tells us, “Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms” (1 Peter 4:10).
Prayer: God, I pray for the desire to serve. May I have the heart-attitude of serving You and making others a top priority.
— Jim Good
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