Selective Service

David Willis challenges is to consider how we are serving Christ- by serving others.

“For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve others…”

(Matthew 20:28a NLT)

I had the opportunity to spend some time with a good friend, and brother in Christ over this past weekend. We made good use of our time together, solving the world’s problems, sharing how God has blessed our lives and, last but not least, discussing things theological.

As we pondered the mission of the Christian church as a whole, I wondered these questions out loud, “Why is it that the International Red Cross is the number one provider of humanitarian aid in the world? Why isn’t the Church the number one provider? Aren’t we called to serve?” We both agreed that these were excellent questions, and then pressed on to ponder other issues.

But these questions would not leave my mind, and in ruminating on them, I remembered hearing a story about the Salvation Army. It seems that, many years ago, at an international Salvation Army convention, Salvation Army founder, Gen. William Booth, was scheduled to be the keynote speaker. As time drew near for his speaking engagement, it became clear that, because of health issues, Booth would not be able to attend. Instead, Booth cabled his message to the convention. The cable, in its entirety, read as follows, “OTHERS.”

While I will not pretend to have the answer to the question of service, I think Booth’s message might strike at the root of some of the underlying issues. Much too often, we get so caught up in “talking” Christianity, that we loose sight of “living” Christianity; we loose sight of “others”. Perhaps we could even make the argument that sometimes we, as Christians, treat the servant-teaching of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, as a buffet, choosing to serve only those who appeal to us personally, and leaving the others as slack for someone else to pick up.

In our dog-eat-dog world it is so easy to forget our call to serve others in the Name of Jesus. We can become so engrossed with keeping our head above water that we loose sight of “others”. And, when we consider that the will to serve is not inborn, or Divinely imparted at our Salvation, it becomes increasingly apparent that we must consistently make conscious decisions to serve others for Christ. Serving others must be intentionally practiced until it becomes second nature.

How do you apply this practically? You look for someone to serve! It’s that easy. Ask the Holy Sprit to prompt your heart, and make you sensitive to those in need. You will be amazed at how often you have the opportunity to serve! Just remember, serving others for the sake of Christ isn’t always glamorous or easy, but it is always the right thing to do.

Thanks for those encouraging words David. If you are a Christian, I urge you to look for ways to serve others in Christ’s name- the blessing you will receive is tremendous. And if you are wondering what it means to be a follower of Christ, please take a look at this information about what it means to become a Christian. And please share your decision with me– I’d love to hear from you.