True Confessions of an Aspiring Servant

September 29, 2015

 

“And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up.”

Galatians 6:9

 

I have a friend who is the epitome of helpful. She is willing to assist in any setting. This girl would mow the lawn, lead a Bible study, and babysit for your kids all in one breathe. Not only is she a servant in action, she has the most humble heart and positive attitude!

 

You probably know someone like this.

 

I believe people who serve naturally have a gift. And most of the time it’s a gift I wish I had! You see, I want to be this person. I want to be the person who always puts others first, who never shirks responsibility because “it’s not mine,” and who doesn’t think twice when I offer to help and others don’t.

 

True Confession #1: I’m not this girl. Trying to be this girl is hard work.

 

For the longest time, I thought if I only ever mopped the floors for God’s kingdom I would be completely fulfilled. Growing up, I saw people with a servant’s heart and appreciated their big-picture impact! Even though I was never sure “what I wanted to be” when I grew up, I knew I could serve! When observing a true servant, there is a certain authenticity and genuine concern for others that is compelling.

 

I already told you I’m not this person, so you’re probably wondering what happened?

 

True Confession #2: Serving looked glamorous.

 

The people I saw were the ones hustling and getting things done! Who wouldn’t want to be this person? (Maybe just me.) I loved the importance attributed to those responsible for behind the scenes tasks. I perceived these people to be the “most holy” because they worked the hardest.

 

However, a problem surfaced when I dove headfirst into serving. I realized it wasn’t everything I had imagined.  Serving was hard work. From the outside, I saw the rich, God-glorifying results. But from the inside, all I could see was the inconvenient, sometimes dirty, quiet sacrifice. I got a glimpse into the life of all those servants I had witnessed and realized how under-appreciated they were! Why would anyone be HAPPY about doing all the work no one else wants to do?  

 

I began to realize it wasn’t just the actions of those who served that attracted me, it was their attitude. That’s when God began to show me His heart of compassion and change my perspective. Previously, I read stories of Jesus serving others and assumed it was easy for Him because He’s God. But as I studied more, similarities became apparent to me. He experienced the inconvenient, dirty, unappreciated sacrifice to the fullest extent. God showed me the correspondence of Christ’s life and death to my service of others.

 

 “But whoever would be great among you must be your servant, and whoever would be first among you must be your slave, even as the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”    Matthew 20:26-28

 

True Confession #3: I was embarrassed. Embarrassed to see my human selfishness exposed and compared to God’s perfection.

 

Luckily, God was prepared for my response.

 

2 Corinthians 12:9 says, “But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.”

 

And luckily, He has grace for all of my unattractive thoughts and bad attitudes as I aspire to develop a servant’s heart. So if you’ve had a similar experience, together we can press on in our pursuit of Jesus! Serving has taken on a new meaning in my life. It’s no longer the glorified, rock-star status I had originally thought. It’s also much more than the difficult sacrifice I experienced. Servanthood is a genuine way to love God and love people. To serve is to love with my hands and my heart, instead of just my mouth. It’s not always easy, but God is more concerned with the condition of our hearts while serving others than the act we accomplish.

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