Tag Archives: being a servant

Being A Servant

A friend of mine sent me a passage from a book called “Celebration of Discipline, Special Anniversary Edition: The Path To Spiritual Growth” by Richard J. Foster. In it, the author discusses the difference between choosing to serve and choosing to be a servant. When I read that, my first thought was, “Isn’t that really the same thing?” However, as I read it, it’s clear they are two different things. A person who chooses to serve picks the person, the time and place. We are in charge during serving, but when we choose to be a servant, we give all that up. We give up the right to choose who, when, where and how. We don’t have a problem serving. We have a problem being servants.

In Isaiah 6, he says that in the year King Uzziah died, he saw the Lord. God was sitting on the throne and the train of His robes filled the Temple. When Isaiah saw that, he felt the holiness of God and immediately saw his sin. Am angel brought a piece of coal to cleanse his lips. Then God spoke up. Verse 8 says, “Then I heard the Lord asking, ‘Whom should I send as a messenger to this people? Who will go for us?’ I said, ‘Here I am. Send me’” (NLT). God then sent Isaiah. He told him exactly what to say and who to tell it to. Isaiah chose to be a servant in this instance. He put himself in a place to be God’s servant.

When you look at the start of that chapter, it really helps us see how what the difference is between serving and being a servant. When we are a servant, God is on the throne of our life and we are at His mercy for what He wants to do. It’s the equivalent of getting out of the driver’s seat and letting Him drive. When we serve, we are still on the throne of our life and in the driver’s seat making the decisions. We may seek His guidance on where to serve, what to say and who to help, but we still have the option to decline. God is looking for people who will choose to be servants, submitting themselves to Him. Have you been serving God or have you truly given up your rights? If you’re looking to get to that next level in your walk with God, get off the throne and let God sit there. You will find true freedom, a closer relationship with God and fully fulfill your calling.

Photo by Greg Weaver on Unsplash

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The Habit Of Service


A habit that I’ve noticed in some of the most effective Christians is the habit of service. Most people who have this habit are not noticeable until they are gone. They give of their time and energy, but prefer to stay behind the scenes. They are rarely recognized because they don’t require public praise. They do what they do because it’s what God has called them to. They recognize that for big things to happen, there’s a lot of little things that need to be done behind the scenes.

Jesus told us that the ones who do these little things with an humble spirit are the greatest in His kingdom. In Matthew 23:11-12 Jesus said, “Do you want to stand out? Then step down. Be a servant. If you puff yourself up, you’ll get the wind knocked out of you. But if you’re content to simply be yourself, your life will count for plenty” (MSG). Jesus modeled what it was like to be a servant to others. He spent His life giving instead of taking. He did things to recognize God, not to be recognized. When you live a life of service in a selfish world, you stand out. 

Look at the life of Mother Theresa. She spent it serving people who had no ability to pay her back or offer her any recognition. She once said, “In this life we cannot do great things. We can only do small things with great love.” I believe that’s the key to the habit of service. Understanding it’s not about doing big things. It’s about the little things that few see. It’s about doing something for someone without posting it on social media. It’s done out of a heart of love for someone in need.

I believe if all Christians would take the time to develop this one habit, we could change the world. If we did things for His recognition instead of our own, we’d have a lot more converts. A life of service yields great results in the kingdom. It’s marked by looking out for the needs of others more than our own. Take time today to look for someone you can serve in some small capacity. Make a difference in their life today and you’ll understand why it’s more blessed to give than to receive.

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Being A Slave

  
Slave. That word conjures up so many emotions and ugly images in our heads. No one wants to be a slave, nor do they want to be treated like one. Slaves are not allowed to have a will of their own. They must do what they are told without any hesitation. They are owned and controlled by someone else. Slavery affects how you think, how you act, and how you view yourself. I can’t imagine anyone wanting to be a slave.

The New Testament uses the word slave to describe humans. We like to think we are free, but the truth is, we are all slaves. We are either shaves to our human nature or we are slaves to Christ. One holds us down, bound in chains. The other sets us free spiritually because we are no longer bound to our sinful fate. Being a slave of Jesus means that our lives, thoughts, and actions are dominated by a desire to please Him rather than ourselves.

That we are all slaves is a hard concept for us to adopt given our thoughts on slavery. To help us understand better, here are 10 verses in the Bible that deal with us being slaves.

1. So Jesus called them all together and said, “You know that the rulers of the heathen have power over them, and the leaders have complete authority. This, however, is not the way it shall be among you. If one of you wants to be great, you must be the servant of the rest; and if one of you wants to be first, you must be the slave of the others— like the Son of Man, who did not come to be served, but to serve and to give his life to redeem many people.”

Matthew 20:25-28 GNT

2. Now a slave does not remain in a household permanently (forever); the son [of the house] does remain forever. So if the Son liberates you [makes you free men], then you are really and unquestionably free.

John 8:35-36 AMP

3. Just because something is technically legal doesn’t mean that it’s spiritually appropriate. If I went around doing whatever I thought I could get by with, I’d be a slave to my whims.

1 Corinthians 6:12 MSG

4. I am a free man, nobody’s slave; but I make myself everybody’s slave in order to win as many people as possible.

1 Corinthians 9:19 GNT

5. So you are no longer a slave, but a son, and if a son, then an heir through God.

Galatians 4:7 ESV

6. They brag about themselves with empty, foolish boasting. With an appeal to twisted sexual desires, they lure back into sin those who have barely escaped from a lifestyle of deception. They promise freedom, but they themselves are slaves of sin and corruption. For you are a slave to whatever controls you.

2 Peter 2:18-19 NLT

7. Let this same attitude and purpose and [humble] mind be in you which was in Christ Jesus: [Let Him be your example in humility:] Who, although being essentially one with God and in the form of God [possessing the fullness of the attributes which make God God], did not think this equality with God was a thing to be eagerly grasped or retained, But stripped Himself [of all privileges and rightful dignity], so as to assume the guise of a servant (slave), in that He became like men and was born a human being.

Philippians 2:5-7 AMP

8. As slaves of Christ, do the will of God with all your heart.

Ephesians 6:6 NLT

9. But thanks be to God, that you who were once slaves of sin have become obedient from the heart to the standard of teaching to which you were committed, and, having been set free from sin, have become slaves of righteousness.

Romans 6:17-18 ESV

10. You cannot be a slave of two masters; you will hate one and love the other; you will be loyal to one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money.

Matthew 6:24 GNT

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The Habit Of Service

I believe that there are several habits we as Christians can adopt in our lives to become the type of believer we truly aspire to be. While Hebrews 11 has compiled a list of heroes of the faith for us, there have been many people who have lived since that time whom we can learn from as well. If I were to ask you to think of a person, past or present, who exemplified a life of faith as a believer, you could probably think of a name quickly. Whether they were written about in the Bible, history, or have just touched your life in some way, they have habits in their life that you and I can adopt into our own lives to become that type of Christian.

  
A habit that I’ve noticed in some of the most effective Christians is the habit of service. Most people who have this habit are not noticeable until they are gone. They give of their time and energy, but prefer to stay behind the scenes. They are rarely recognized because they don’t require public praise. They do what they do because it’s what God has called them to. They recognize that for big things to happen, there’s a lot of little things that need to be done behind the scenes.

Jesus told us that the ones who do these little things with an humble spirit are the greatest in His kingdom. In Matthew 23:11-12 Jesus said, “Do you want to stand out? Then step down. Be a servant. If you puff yourself up, you’ll get the wind knocked out of you. But if you’re content to simply be yourself, your life will count for plenty” (MSG). Jesus modeled what it was like to be a servant to others. He spent His life giving instead of taking. He did things to recognize God, not to be recognized. When you live a life of service in a selfish world, you stand out.

Look at the life of Mother Theresa. She spent it serving people who had no ability to pay her back or offer her any recognition. She once said, “In this life we cannot do great things. We can only do small things with great love.” I believe that’s the key to the habit of service. Understanding it’s not about doing big things. It’s about the little things that few see. It’s about doing something for someone without posting it on social media. It’s done out of a heart of love for someone in need.

I believe if all Christians would take the time to develop this one habit, we could change the world. If we did things for His recognition instead of our own, we’d have a lot more converts. A life of service yields great results in the kingdom. It’s marked by looking out for the needs of others more than our own. Take time today to look for someone you can serve in some small capacity. Make a difference in their life today and you’ll understand why it’s more blessed to give than to receive.

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