Tag Archives: acts of service

Saying Yes

I was just talking with some friends about Bob Goff’s book “Love Does”. If you haven’t heard of him or this book, I’d encourage you to check it out. To me, Bob is a Christian “Yes Man”. He views each interaction and request from someone as an opportunity for Jesus to show up. The book is a collection of stories from his life where he simply said yes in certain situations and incredible things happened. It challenged me to want to do more for others and God’s Kingdom. It’s prompted me to say yes to more things giving the Holy Spirit more opportunities to do things through me.

I love reading Paul’s letters to the Early Church. Not only are they great instructions for us on how to live, they also include a list of people who were examples of Christian character. He mentions how they opened their homes to him, made clothes for the poor, welcomed him in, some visited him in prison and encouraged him. These people he mentioned were just ordinary people who did what they were promoted to do because of their faith. They could have easily found an excuse to not do those things, but because they did, they’re mentioned in the Bible.

2 Thessalonians 1:11 says, “So we keep on praying for you, asking our God to enable you to live a life worthy of his call. May he give you the power to accomplish all the good things your faith prompts you to do” (NLT). You are called by God to do the things He’s prepared you to do. Your faith is constantly prompting you to do things. Have you been listening to it and obeying or have you been making excuses? The more we say yes to those promptings, the more we allow the Holy Spirit to accomplish things through us. You don’t have to be a Bob Goff, but you do need to live the life God is calling you to. It starts by saying yes to things He is prompting you to do.

Photo by Helena Lopes on Unsplash

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True Worship

  
Worship is one of those words that we, as Christians, lose the meaning of. For many Christians, when they read or hear the word “worship”, they immediately think of their favorite church song that they sing during praise and worship, which is lead by their worship pastor. In our modern Church, we’ve singularized what the word worship means. We’ve narrowed it down to singing and lifting our hands, but it’s more than that.

Worship is any action that flows from the posture and attitude of our heart towards God. Serving the least of these, giving your tithe and offerings, helping the widows in your town, praying with someone in need, cleaning up after a church event, and so much more are acts of worship. When our hearts are bowed before God, it pours out in our actions as acts of worship. You don’t have to be able to carry a tune in a bucket to worship, you simply need an opportunity to serve God.

Here are some of my favorite verses on worship.

1. For God is Spirit, so those who worship him must worship in spirit and in truth.
John 4:24 NLT

2. Worship GOD if you want the best; worship opens doors to all his goodness.
Psalm 34:9 MSG

3. I APPEAL to you therefore, brethren, and beg of you in view of [all] the mercies of God, to make a decisive dedication of your bodies [presenting all your members and faculties] as a living sacrifice, holy (devoted, consecrated) and well pleasing to God, which is your reasonable (rational, intelligent) service and spiritual worship.
Romans 12:1 AMP

4. When you said, “Come worship me,” I answered, “I will come, Lord.”
Psalm 27:8 GNT

5. You must worship only the LORD your God. He is the one who will rescue you from all your enemies.
2 Kings 17:39 NLT

6. Oh, how great is Your goodness, which You have laid up for those who fear, revere, and worship You, goodness which You have wrought for those who trust and take refuge in You before the sons of men!
Psalm 31:19 AMP

7. Ascribe to the Lord the glory due his name; worship the Lord in the splendor of holiness.
Psalms 29:2 ESV

8. But the time is coming and is already here, when by the power of God’s Spirit people will worship the Father as he really is, offering him the true worship that he wants.
John 4:23 GNT

9. God-friendship is for God-worshipers; They are the ones he confides in.
Psalm 25:14 MSG

10. Behold, the Lord’s eye is upon those who fear Him [who revere and worship Him with awe], who wait for Him and hope in His mercy and loving-kindness.
Psalm 33:18 AMP

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Ministering in Love Languages

At church last night, our group was discussing a church in Austin, Texas that had someone who ministers to the homeless in that area come in and speak. At the altar call, he didn’t ask anyone to come down and get saved. He didn’t ask anyone to come down for prayer. He asked that each person would pray and ask God if they should give their shoes to the homeless. If they felt they were, they were to come to the front, take off their shoes and leave them there.

I started thinking about that and the book “The 5 Love Languages” by Dr. Gary Chapman. In it, he describes five ways that people give and receive love: words of affirmation, acts of service, quality time, physical touch and gifts. Then I started thinking, if those are the ways people receive love, shouldn’t we the Church be showing love to the lost in their love languages? The story in Austin was showing love through gifts. For a lot of believers, this is the easiest way to show love because we give out of our abundance and then move on with our lives. What if we continued to give gifts until it came from our necessity and not our abundance?

Words of affirmation are another one that doesn’t require much of us, but we hardly do it. I was having a rough day recently and had a lot on my mind. As I stopped to pump gas, my mind was working. A lady on the other side of the pump said, “Hey, you should smile every once in a while. It’ll do wonders!” I snapped out of my thought coma, looked at her and smiled. She said, “See. Doesn’t that feel better?” She got in her car and drove off. Her words of affirmation changed my mindset. It made my day better. We can do that too.

Where things start to get difficult are the remaining three. I once heard it said that many people spell “love”, T-I-M-E. Quality time is not something we usually want to do with “the least of these”. We’d rather give something that costs us less. The problem is that those who receive love this way are left out when we’d rather take the easier route. If we truly care about the lost, we need to find ways to spend quality time with them, invest in a relationship and share the love of Christ with them.

I like acts of service when reaching out to the lost. I call it “putting sweat equity in the Kingdom”. Give a day of your time, labor and talents to someone who needs it. This speaks volumes to those who receive love this way. Find a widow or elderly couple nearby who need yard or house work done and help them. Find a single mom who needs help and offer to help her. Find a ministry who is doing one of the other love languages and help them. It requires your time and effort, but is well worth it.

Finally, there is physical touch. Jesus was good at this. He laid His hands on people and touched them. He wasn’t afraid to go up to lepers and touch them. They were considered unclean and people were forbidden to touch them, but Jesus did it anyway. Who are today’s “lepers”? Who does society deem “unclean”? They need us to reach out to them, hug them and to share God’s love with them.

The book shows that we typically give love in ways we like to receive it. In a relationship, you have to learn someone else’s language to keep their “love tank” full. In ministry, I think that if you’re good at giving love in your language, that’s the area you need to show love to others in. Each church should have ministries that give love to others in these five ways. It will allow those in the church who give love those ways a place to plug in. It will also allow the church to share love in the ways that people in their community receive it. Think of the difference that could make for your church and God’s Kingdom.

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