I'm always talking to the little ones in Sunday School class about serving others. I co-teach a class of second and third graders on Sunday mornings. So many of the Bible stories are linked to service in one form or another--especially those of Christ. That was one of His reasons for being. I know with the "Easter" [in our church/family we prefer "Resurrection Sunday] season having just gone by, the concept of the ultimate sacrifice is foremost in our minds, but Christ's example while He was walking around in human flesh with human arms and legs was to show us how to treat and serve each other.
Two of my teenager friends were in a discussion over being in service and one of them said, "I don't ever want to be a servant! I want to be the boss--the guy who gets served! Why should I want to be something as lowly as that to fetch things for someone so they can use you in any way like a slave or something?"
The other teen said, "You don't know what a real servant is. You're thinking it is all about being like somebody's maid or something. It's like, if you want to be a leader you have to learn to be a good follower. You should want to help other people who need it like you would want to be helped when you needed it. It's not like somebody's the boss of you; it's like you do stuff for people because it is the right thing to do.
"People who get to be the boss, have to start somewhere. They have to work for another boss and work their way up."
If that weren't profound enough, coming from a teenager, he said: "What do you learn from always being served? You don't get to be stronger and smarter. You just become somebody useless who can't do anything for himself . Somebody who will always need a maid. "
What an 'Out of the mouths of babes' moment. That was one conversation I just allowed to take place between peers.
Whether or not you believe Jesus is the Christ, you have to willingly experience the humility of servanthood to be a well-rounded person--to experience life to the fullest. Just as one's education should also include some exposure to the arts for one to have a well-rounded education.
I've learned over the years that service, if it is from your heart, is not about
- whether the person receiving service is in your home or not. Some folks take that "charity begins at home" phrase to practice only service at home.
- staying inside the four walls of a church building, baking cakes for the church bizaare, decorating for the Easter play, faithfully singing in the choir stand every Sunday, and doing the Sunday a service by faithfully occupying the same pew week after week, etc.
- giving/sharing with just those you know and/or those who look like you, speak the same language as you with no accent just like you--because you know you have no accent.
- giving away your old worn out clothes and things you couldn't sell at your annual garage sale to somebody, anybody, if they would just come and haul it away!
- bragging about how much you gave so you can get a pat on the back from others or may even a framed certificate or a trophy! Just some kind of recognition so everyone will know what a good person you are!
I did an on-line search for "service to others" just to see what I'd find. Here are some interesting links:
Matthew 25:31-46 One of my very, very, very favorites!
I pray that whoever reads this will use their gifts in the service of uplifting others and not hide their rosebushes under a tin tub.
This has been a favorite study Bible of mine. I have had three copies because I have worn them out (I had to stop taking them in my big purse). My current copy is hardback and is lasting for years. I used to take my first copy and put it next to a KJV. Then I'd read both and the notes in the NIV study and that would make everything clear. I want to know KJV but I don't speak KJ English. There are charts and maps that are right on time. My mother liked it but she couldn't read the margin notes which make for great discussion and reference. So I found the large print version for her birthday one year an she loves it.