noun ser·vant \ˈsər-vənt\
: a person who is devoted to or guided by something
It was 2:30 in the morning. I heard the quiet pitter patter of feet below me, a quick last minute shuffling of luggage and the click of the door as my dad headed out to serve for 4 weeks at a Young Life Timberwolf Lake staff assignment. Away from his family and friends. Away from society. All with just a chance to bring one teenager to know Jesus. It was in this moment that I finally began to truly realize the beauty of serving.
When I think of a servant’s heart, my dad immediately comes to mind. He has shown me through example all my life what it is to be a servant to others. I’d imagine it’s the same for many of my colleagues and friends who have family members serving in the military, ministry, or within the community.
In light of recent events and tragedies within our country, I think it’s important to focus on what having a servant’s heart truly means. I truly believe that Jesus created us all with the longing that we would grow up to have a servant’s heart like His. We’re reminded in Mark 10:
“For even the Son of Man did not come to be served but to serve, and to give his life a ransom for many”.
I can’t help but to be completely in awe of those that willingly serve in the front lines of danger. Our law enforcement in America as well as those that serve in our military deserve the utmost honor and respect.
I’m also encouraged by those that give and serve in ministry. In my new job, I meet someone new every single day that is working to further the Lord’s Kingdom and it brings me such joy. There are so many people working tirelessly day in and day out that go unnoticed behind the scenes- it would blow your mind. It’s very humbling.
Paul’s words in Philippians always stop me in my tracks as he reminds us what it is to be a selfless servant for others.
“2:3 Instead of being motivated by selfish ambition or vanity, each of you should, in humility, be moved to treat one another as more important than yourself. 2:4 Each of you should be concerned not only about your own interests, but the interests of others as well. 2:5 You should have the same attitude toward one another that Christ Jesus had, 2:6 who though he existed in the form of God did not regard equality with God as something to be grasped, 2:7 but emptied himself by taking on the form of a slave, by looking like other men, and by sharing in human nature. 2:8 He humbled himself, by becoming obedient to the point of death—even death on a cross!”
Powerful. I believe that in order to truly understand what Gods purpose is for our lives, we must take on the form of a servant’s heart. The impact that it will have on not only yourself, but others- is immeasurable.
To me- when I am serving others, I am ultimately serving Christ.
I’ll never forget a story that our Executive Director shared with us just recently. A woman called our organization asking if we would be able to help her obtain a hot water heater. It was the middle of winter. She would travel by foot to her nearest neighbor’s house to gather a bucket of hot water, in hopes that it would stay just warm enough until she got back to her residence to wash her hair.
I don’t know about you- but I don’t even think twice about the temperature of my water. It’s a minuscule part of my day. But for this woman, it was a daily struggle. I can’t imagine how long this affected her life. I take something as small as having the luxury of warm water for granted every single day.
[[Happy note: we were able to purchase and install a brand new hot water heater into her home.]]
In a world so focused on being served and self-fulfillment, try being the light of Jesus through your actions. It’s so easy to get caught up in selfish ways. This is a daily struggle for me. Imagine an entire world full of servants for Christ. Loving and giving to one another. How glorious would that be?!