What It Means to Serve (2)
April 11, 2012
“Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus.” Php 2:5 NIV
Paul wrote: “Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus: Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant” (vv. 5-7 NIV). In order to serve God you must focus on others rather than yourself. Much of what we do is self-serving. We serve to be admired, or to achieve our own goals. Some of what we do is more manipulation than ministry. We’re really thinking about ourselves and how noble and wonderful we are. We even use serving as a bargaining tool: “God, I’ll do this for you if you’ll do that for me.” No, true servants don’t use God for their purposes, they let God use them for His. God is always more interested in your attitude than your achievements. King Amaziah lost God’s favor because “He did what was right in the sight of the Lord, yet not with a true heart” (2Ch 25:2 NRS). Self-forgetfulness is a daily struggle, a lesson we must learn over and over. You can measure your servant’s heart by how you respond when others treat you like a servant. How do you react when you feel taken for granted, bossed around, or treated as an inferior? Jesus said, “If someone takes unfair advantage of you, use the occasion to practice the servant life” (Mt 5:41 TM). You say, “It’s not fair. I keep giving to this person but they never give back.” Just keep serving, knowing “the Lord will reward everyone for whatever good he does” (Eph 6:8 NIV).