Friday, July 1, 2016

A Servant’s Heart

If we want to be like Jesus, we have to be a servant with a good heart.  Christ said, "I came to serve, not to be served." (Matthew 20:28). So what are some of the characteristics of a true servant of God?  I believe that true servanthood encompasses some distinct qualities. 
·       A true servant of God will be willing to serve in lowly areas – areas that nobody else would want to serve in. These are areas where there is no recognition from other people. They are areas where much work is done behind the scenes and others don't even consider the fact that it needed to be done!  The true servant of God is willing to do this because he or she is working before the Lord, not before men. This is not only done at church or in the “body”, but especially at home! 
  • The next characteristic of a true servant of God is that this person gives and serves without expecting anything in return. In 2 Corinthians 12:15 Paul pointed out to those people “the more I love you, the less I’m loved by you.” Yet he was still willing to spend and be spent for them! That’s godliness; loving people unconditionally and doing good to them without expecting anything back – not even love or appreciation.
  • This next level of servitude I’ve found to be the most difficult. The true servant of God must be willing to give of his or herself even to their enemies. By “enemies”, I don’t just mean people who want to avoid you all the time and never talk to you. Your enemy could be your spouse or a friend who is in a bad mood at the time, and treats you harshly. It could be your teenage child who wants nothing to do with you at the time. They are not really your enemies – but maybe for the time being, they are acting like you’re an enemy. During these times, the true servant of God will really stand out. It takes a godly person to do good to another even when that other person is treating them like trash in return. Jesus said that we must love people even especially at these times, otherwise we’re just the same as the world who only love people that treat them nicely (Matthew 5:43-47).
  • A true servant will never boast, or think of himself highly because he is serving the Lord. It won’t even enter his mind that he did such good deeds! In other words, his “left hand will not know what his right hand is doing” (Matthew 6:3). His attitude will be, “I’m just doing my job.”

True servants of God will serve with joy all these times as if they are serving the Lord. They will never complain that they’ve been given such a lowly task.  These people realize that anything they do for others, they are doing it for their Lord (Matthew 25:40), and they will rejoice at that fact that they have the privilege to serve God like that.  It is in serving that we find true joy. 

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