Who comes to mind when you think of a ‘real servant’? For me, it’s Mother Theresa. She was wonderful and probably changed the world – but how did she do it? When I read this title I wondered a little about how exactly a ‘real servant’ was meant to act. Is it really that simple? Well I learned that it may not be so much about how we act but more about our motives.
You may remember that recently I had to scale back and rethink my life. I took some things out and left others in. Basically, if I hadn’t felt God specifically tell me I should be doing it, I removed it. This may seem very cut and dried but I have young children and so I’m very protective of my time while they’re in this important stage of life. I was reluctant to read this chapter, wondering whether it was going to make me feel bad for putting up some healthy boundaries. I was happy to find some wonderful wisdom to be used in the areas we’ve chosen to be active in:
Real servants do their best with what they have: Servants don’t make excuses, procrastinate, or wait for better circumstances. Servants never say, “One of these days” or “When the time is right.” They just do what needs to be done. The bible says, “If you wait for perfect conditions, you will never get anything done.” God expects you to do what you can, with what you have, wherever you are. Less-than-perfect service is always better than the best intention.
Real servants do every task with equal dedication: Whatever they do, servants “do it with all their heart.” The size of the task is irrelevant. The only issue is, does it need to be done?
In heaven God is going to openly reward some of His most obscure and unknown servants – people we have never heard of on earth, who taught emotionally disturbed children, cleaned up after incontinent elderly, nursed AIDS patients and served in thousands of other unnoticed ways. Knowing this, don’t be discouraged when your service is unnoticed or taken for granted. Keep on serving God! “Throw yourselves into the work of the Master, confident that nothing you do for Him is a waste of time or effort.” 1 Cor 15:58
This certainly got me thinking. When you’re working with a team and decisions need to be made, sometimes people feel a little put out when they feel like they haven’t been heard. Or they may feel a little under appreciated. There are many ways we can feel offended when serving God. Perhaps these are times when we need to remember that we are here to serve.. These are the moments God can use to grow and mature us and get us ready for new things.
Have you struggled as a ‘servant’? How do you feel about the concept? I’d love to know what you think.
Anyway, thanks for reading! In tomorrow’s post I’ll be chatting with Footprints Magazine editor, Janet Camilleri about her journey as a Christian writer and editor. Should be fun – plus she has some really inspiring words to share.
Bye for now!
PLEASE NOTE: Quotations in this and other posts relating to The Purpose Driven Life (usually entitled Day:?) are sourced from The Purpose Driven Life book by Rick Warren unless otherwise stated. This is an independant study and is based on my opinion and experience only. Copies of The Purpose Driven Life book are available for purchase from all good christian books stores, including Koorong. The first seven chapters of the book can be downloaded FREE from Rick Warren’s official site here.