Thoughts,Songs,Writings,Rants,Encouragements, and Life

Thursday, April 14, 2005

-A Servants Heart-

“The tendency in today’s culture is to want to be a “star”, but I want to be a servant.” – Jon Foreman- Switchfoot
Jesus was born for a purpose – to serve a need; to serve God’s purpose. He was born a SERVANT! From the day He was born until the day He died, He was serving SOMEONE. He was encouraged by someone to complete a mission – “to give up His life as a ransom.” We often see Him as a miracle-worker, the Savior of the world – He is also a SERVANT through and through. He breathes ‘servant hood’! Being a servant of God defines Jesus’ entire life.During the last supper when He washed His disciples’ feet, He said, “How true it is that a servant is not greater than the master. Nor are messengers more important than the one who sends them.” (John 13:16) NLV He was the ‘sent one’. He was the ‘messenger’. He was the greatest ‘intercessor’ of all time.Therefore – He cannot be greater than the One who sent Him. All His life He was living in submission to His Master, God.Are we greater than Jesus today? Do we find it so hard to be a servant? If we feel pitiful for being a servant – THINK AGAIN. We are called to be one! Someone once said, “We are SHAPED to be a servant, we are shaped to serve.” That’s the greatest privilege and blessing we have as followers of Him. Even angels delight in serving God. The saddest thing that can happen to us is to have God say, “You’re not fit to serve Me!” This mission was everything for Jesus – it guided everything He did while He was on earth. His entire life was in service for God – including His death! He came for that purpose; He died for that purpose. The purpose was: To serve, not be served. No wonder He has to correct their wrong thinking here. When we ask Him to do something for us, this mindset is wrong. We have to :

(1) CHOOSE SERVICE OVER SELF-INTEREST It is not about your glory. It is not about authority or power! It’s about you doing God’s will. Doing God’s will involves sacrifice, pain, suffering... The Pharisees mindset was “What can my subjects do for me.” That’s the Gentile or pagan’s way. We tend to think that way as well – “What can Jesus do for me? What can God do for me? What can the church do for me?” Our mindset should be “What can I do for others and God.”So bros/sis, the right question to ask is, “What can I do for God?” …for His church; for others.Jesus has never, at any point, become self-serving. SELF has never become an obstacle in this mission. Here are a few examples of that:
John 6:38 “For I have come down from heaven not to do my will but to do the will of Him who sent me.”
John 7:16 “Jesus answered, "My teaching is not my own. It comes from him who sent me.”
John 14:10 “The words I say to you are not just my own. Rather, it is the Father, living in me, who is doing his work.” John 14:24 “These words you hear are not my own; they belong to the Father who sent me.”Believers today do not usually ask, ‘what does God want me to do?’ They’ll probably look for simple tasks, easy jobs… What’s in it for me? What can I gain from this? We pick and choose. We call it our duty and finish as quickly as possible; we don’t see being a servant as a lifestyle.
But I don’t see this in the Scriptures. And I certainly don’t see that in Jesus’ life. Eph 5:25 “…Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her.”
Have we come to the point of shedding blood for the church? Nowadays, when the challenges are great or the battle intense, we just move away and find a more comfortable place. The ‘Hang in there’ attitude is no longer there. Look at Jesus – He came for our benefit, to save us – yet many do not like him, appreciate, or listen to him; these are people who are eager to see him dead on the cross. Yet He hangs in there and finishes the job! Isaiah says to God, “Here am I, send me!” It’s all about God and His mission. If we as Christians do only what is comfortable, then today we won’t have the Gospel. Missionaries would not have been willing to go to difficult places and start churches. A servant ‘waits’ on table – for the Master’s bidding; he waits to fulfill whatever He needs. Are we more like bosses or servants?There is this tendency to DO OUR OWN THINGS – this is the root of SIN. We want to do what we like. That causes our downfall. Therefore Choose service over self-interest. If that is what God delights in, if that is what His church needs, I’ll offer myself to fulfill it .God will bless you - Matt 19:29 “And everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or fields for my sake will receive a hundred times as much and will inherit eternal life.”Another thing I learn from the words of Jesus –
(2) THINK LIKE A SERVANTServing God is not about aptitude but attitude. It’s not about your ability but your mindset. We usually associate servants to some kind of work - a cook, a cleaner…But that is not true – I can be a major businessman and still serve him with everything I do. I can be an actor and still serve him. I can be a musician and still serve him with all of me. I can be a waiter or a student and still serve him with all I have.Phil 2:5-11 "5 Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus: 6 Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped, 7 but made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. 8 And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself and became obedient to death - even death on a cross! 9 Therefore God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name, 10 that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, 11 and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father." When a servant does something, it is always for the good of another; never for his own good. Jesus was here to serve God’s purpose and save your soul. So who was He thinking of? God and You.
A. Bringing delight to God’s heart,
B. Saving your life.A servant puts the interests of God and others ahead of his/her own. It means that if you have a choice to make, and one choice will benefit you and the other will benefit your church, a servant must choose the one that will benefit the church. What do you see that’s good for this church and nobody’s doing it? What do you see that’s good for someone but no one noticed? Our tendency is: “Leave it to the professional!” The cleaner will clean, and the cook will cook… This is not scriptural – ‘servant hood’ is not an organization. All Christians are servants. A non-serving Christian is a contradiction. I’ll show you why - in John 13:4-5 we see that during the Passover meal Jesus “got up from the meal, took off his outer clothing, and wrapped a towel around his waist. After that, he poured water into a basin and began to wash his disciples’ feet, drying them with the towel that was wrapped around him.” Peter didn’t like that, he believed - Jesus, as the guest of honor, shouldn’t do this. Have you ever stopped and wondered why Peter was so upset? It was because Peter knew it wasn’t His responsibility. Washing feet was the job of the lowest of all slaves. This was unheard of! Jesus was their teacher. If anything, they should be washing His feet! “The room was filled with proud hearts and dirty feet. The disciples were willing to fight for a throne, but fighting for a towel never crossed their minds.”Have you ever done anything good for others that was not your responsibility in the first place? Well, you’re just being like Jesus.
Bucket Analogy- Two buckets of water were mentioned in the Bible.
1. Do you remember what Pilate did when he had a chance to acquit Jesus? He called for a bucket and washed his hands of the whole thing. Matthew 27:24: “When Pilate saw that he was getting nowhere, but that instead an uproar was starting, he took water and washed his hands in front of the crowd. ‘I am innocent of this man’s blood,’ he said. ‘It is your responsibility!’”
2. But Jesus, the night before His death, called for a bucket and proceeded to wash the dirty and dusty feet of His disciples. Taking on the position of the most low of servants and humbly living (Not acting) out the part. So my friends, which one will you use? Pilate’s bucket is common today. He knew what he should have done but he took the easy way out. He passed on to others the responsibility that should have been his. Many people today pass the bucket and wash their hands clean of everything they can. Pilate uses his bucket to avoid his rightful responsibility. While Jesus used His bucket to take on responsibility, which was not His in the first place. If we call ourselves Christ’s followers, we shouldn’t be looking for ways to wash our hands. Instead we should be getting them dirty.
So what do you do now?
1. Serve whenever you can.
2. Serve whoever is in need. Be willing to do whatever it takes.



Blogger Babal Gadar said...

Hi Ben,
You are such a lovely friend to have around.

Take care and keep smiling....

Your friend,

3:55 AM


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