“Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men.” – Colossians 3:23 (ESV)
I’m sure there are several different areas you might currently be serving, whether it is in your school, a community charity, church, or even your family. All these different areas might require a certain attitude towards them from your side. However, in all of it, the question I want to ask you is: why do you serve?
The definition of ‘serve’ is: to perform duties or service for another person.
As Christians, we are asked to follow the example of our great King, Jesus. He came down and discarded His Kingship and glory in exchange for a crown of thorns and lowly human form. I think we tend to forget what an amazing sacrifice that was sometimes. We just buzz over the fact that Jesus came to seek and save the lost, and we lose sight of His sacrifice.
Well, besides His primary mission to seek and save, He came to serve. To serve us, of all created beings! Is not that alone enough to compel us to stand in awe and feel it our duty to serve in exchange?
And please note this is very important, that we do not do this to “earn” something; or to be a “good Christian”; no, we do this because we cannot but serve as Jesus served us.
So alright, we established that we’ve all got areas we serve in and things we are busy with and involved in, but what exactly are your reasons for being involved where you are? Is it to look good on the school committee? Is it because you want a leadership role and this is your chance to get it? Or maybe because you feel like your dad forced you into cleaning the church bathrooms and you are just stuck in the job assigned to you?
I have found that we, as humans, are tempted to categorize certain areas of service more honorable or worthwhile than others. We look at a certain area and wish we could’ve held that position or be as useful as such-and-such a person. We are so sidetracked by the task that we forget what our role is. Our role is to serve out of a heart of gratitude, of service for our King, and because we want to please our Maker.
See, the point is not so much what we do, it is rather why and Who we are doing it for. You don’t need to be standing on the stage to be seen as an honorable servant; you don’t need to have your name mentioned as a volunteer in a certain activity, and you do not need to be on stage singing in the band just to be seen. You know in your heart that you are serving Jesus in a certain capacity – you do not need people’s approval, praise, or even recognition – you have the King of King’s approval and that’s all we need.
Perhaps you are at a certain stage of your life where you might need to re-evaluate your motives for serving. Consider why you choose to do ministry in that area. Maybe you need a heart change. Sometimes you might even feel yourself in a difficult situation where you know you are serving in an area that truly is not what you have been called for, and this can even be a trap sometimes.
So, in this new year, re-evaluate your areas of service…are they for the Lord? Is your heart in the right place? Is it what the Lord has called you for? Don’t be freaked out when some seasons are over – the Lord opens and closes doors all the time – just be willing to go where He leads you and stay within His will.
If you try to conquer a mountain that wasn’t assigned for you to climb, you will become weary and worn out very quickly. But if you set out to climb what God has given, you will be steadily making your way to the top, because it’s God’s work. He calls, and He equips; and what He calls you for, He will prepare and sustain you for. Rest in that.
So, we are facing this new year of 2018 with new challenges, new opportunities, and a lot of choices. Evaluate where you currently are. Seek the Lord’s direction on what you should do next; ask Him where He desires you to be. Or otherwise, ask Him for that needed heart change towards your area of service. Ask Him to remind you Who you are doing it for. Find joy in serving Jesus in your ministries. Make Him the center of your ministry.
“Rendering service with a good will as to the Lord and not to man.” – Ephesians 6:7 (ESV)