Friday, October 15, 2010

What can I do for you?

How often do we ask people this question?  "What can I do for you?"  So many times we are focused on getting what we want and determined to have our way, that we fail to see what others' needs might be.  We are living in a world that does not promote selflessness - instead a world that asks the question "what will I get out of it".  We would see such a change in our days, relationships, marriages, lives & world if we decided to shift our attention to the needs of others and adopted a servant heart. 

When God puts someone in need right in front of you, He is giving you the opportunity to grow as a servant. Opportunity comes – and goes to help others and make them feel special.  How many times do we come into contact with someone who has a need and we are so wrapped up our day we miss it?  Think about people you can serve -at work,  in a store, or even a family member.  At work, it can be such a "save-yourself environment" we focus on ourselves and miss opportunities to serve.  We fail to give people credit for their accomplishments, don't reach out and meet others' needs without elevating ourselves in the process ( I call this eyeservice-serving in order to impress others),  and sometimes fail at just finding ways we can make someone's day better.  In a store or just out and about, there are so many unseen opportunities to reach out and serve someone.  You never know what the person in line with you or at the park might be going through.  If you have ever lost a loved one or experienced true pain, you know exactly what I am talking about.  I know for me when something has happened to me and I am hurting inside, I search for kindness in others and so many times it doesn't show up.  Sometimes the most difficult to think about serving is our family.  A husband, mother, father, sister, grandparent, or children.  We view these people as takers so we stand guard and protect ourselves from becoming the server.  Sometimes we feel depleted and want to put our hands on our hips and say "WHAT ABOUT ME?"    Let's be reminded -self-promotion and servanthood don’t mix.“If I were still trying to please men, I would not be a servant of Christ”  (Galatians 1:10).  The servant will not always get an accolade in this world, but be reminded our heavenly Father is looking down and smiling.  The servant heart is to honor Him.  Christ calls us to have a servant heart.  He specialized in menial tasks that everyone else tried to avoid: washing feet, helping children, fixing breakfast, and serving lepers. Nothing was beneath him, because he came to serve. It wasn’t in spite of his greatness that he did these things, but because of it, and he expects us to follow his example.  (John 13:15) "I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you. I tell you the truth, no servant is greater than his master, nor is a messenger greater than the one who sent him. Now that you know these things, you will be blessed if you do them. If we are not willing it means we do not have a servant’s heart."  He shared this truth with His disciples after washing their feet.  (Matthew 20: 26-28) "Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be your slave— just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many."
In today's times, we seek to be able to afford the luxuries of hiring others to in essence serve us.  It might be to keep our lawn, wash our car, clean our house, cook for us,  have massages, do our nails & pedicures, etc.  Jesus teaches us to try and not work towards having people do for us but for us to do for others.  Our highest goal should be to serve not to be served.  (Matthew 23:11) "But the greatest among you shall be your servant."  Philippians 2:1-4 says it beautifully.  "If therefore there is any encouragement in Christ, if there is any consolation of love, if there is any fellowship of the Spirit, if any affection and compassion, make my joy complete by being of the same mind, maintaining the same love, united in spirit, intent on one purpose. Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind let each of you regard one another as more important than himself; do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others. "

Decide today to serve others.  You will be surprised at what a blessing it will be to you and what a huge difference it will make in your world.

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