Posts Tagged ‘servant’

  

“The greatest among you must be a servant.” (Matthew‬ ‭23:11‬ ‭NLT‬‬)

Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna, the notorious enemy at the Alamo, was a charming politician, but he was foolish in his ways. After being captured and allowing Texas its freedom, Santa Anna would be later released in 1837 by President Andrew Jackson, promising to never serve in politics again. That promise wouldn’t last. He would rise and fall numerous times in Mexico before eventually fleeing to Europe around 1855. He would die in Mexico in 1876 as a broken old man.

As the old saying goes, “Power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.” It is a dangerous thing when we entertain the thought of arising to places where we can have others do what we want them too. Selfishness has no place in leadership. The lust for power and control is a corrupting cancer that no one is immune to.

If God raises you up as a leader, follow His example to be a Servant-Leader. God will only allow us to lead if He knows He can trust us to do the job right. Be safe and usable to God! You are loved today! 

  

“Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me.” (Luke‬ ‭9‬:‭23‬ NIV)

In 1821, a young Louis Braille heard an address at his school, the Royal Institute for Blind Youth in Paris, given by Captain Charles Barbier, a retired army captain. Barbier had been inspired to create a system of page bumps for soldiers to read and write messages in the dark of night. Unfortunately for Barbier, his dot system was clunky, the French language had too many symbols for him to effectively translate, and the army didn’t seem to be interested in it. 

Frustrated with the embossed lettering system at his school, 13-year-old Braille certainly was interested in the dot system, and he soon began working to make it better. Reports suggest that Louis devoted all his spare and vacation time towards this goal, over a period of two to three years! His sacrifice was worth it, creating a better way for blind individuals to learn and live, and all while still a teen!

The cornerstone of Christian living is the sacrifice of personal ambition to accomplish the greater works of God. While this may seem harsh or unjust to some, remember that God thinks and sees much better than we do, with better ends in mind! Walk daily with your cross of sacrifice! It will lead you to touching lives wherever you go! You are loved! 

  

“And certain women who had been healed of evil spirits and infirmities…provided for Him from their substance.” (Luke‬ ‭8‬:‭2-3‬ NKJV)

As a fire chaplain, I once responded to a call with our department to a house in our community for a non-emergency assistance need. As I stopped by later to follow up with the family, they exclaimed how grateful they were for the much needed help. Although they were of very modest means, they wanted to do something to show their appreciation for our firemen. So, with boxes of chocolates and homemade goodies, our guys were blessed by these for doing the job our department was called to do!

The Bible speaks of a group of women that Jesus helped, having compassion on and delivering them from demonic issues, possibly possession, and restoring them to a better life. In gratitude, though they were also of modest means, they served Jesus with whatever they had: a bit of money, food preparation, camp cleaning, laundry… They gave of themselves which enabled Jesus and His disciples to focus on the ministry which would impact even more lives. Every bit helped.

Like the women that followed Jesus, we all have reasons to be grateful to the Lord. These reasons should compel us naturally to somehow serve Him in return. Don’t look at what you don’t have or can’t do, but start with what you got and who you are! You’re greatest gifts and talents are already in your grasp! It will all make a difference and be appreciated! You are loved today! Be a servant! 

  

John did not fail to confess, but confessed freely, ‘I am not the Messiah.'” (John‬ ‭1‬:‭20‬ NIV)

A pastor friend once shared with me a humorous hospital story. One of his members had been in an accident and was rushed to the ER. When my friend got the call and arrived at the hospital, he found the frantic family. As he walked through the doors, there was the loud, collective, audible sigh of relief from this large group as someone spotted him and cried out, “Everything’s gonna be okay; the pastor’s here!”

The danger of a Messiah Complex is that we truly begin to believe we are “saviors”. And we really run afoul when we try to deliver people out of predicaments that God NEEDED for them to encounter to build their faith! We are not saviors, but Hands of the Savior, being used by God to touch lives so that their allegiance is given to Him, not us. 

Attention feels good, and to be seen as important to others is flattering. But the life of a servant is a life hidden in the Master’s shadow. We fail by accepting the spotlight. Point the way to God by impacting people’s lives and you will share in the Master’s joy! You are loved! 

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This letter is from James, a slave of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ.” (James‬ ‭1‬:‭1‬ NLT)

Could you willingly become a slave? In ancient times, this was a common way for impoverished people to provide subsistence for themselves or their family and provision was made for this in law. For example, the code of Hammurabi stated that “besides being able to borrow on personal security, an individual might sell himself or a family member into slavery.” In medieval Russia, self-sale was the main source of slaves.

In the biblical aspect, James is not talking about an auction block but a willingness to let God control his life instead of his own whims. To be a “slave of God” sounds crazy, until you understand that God is a more merciful and loving Master of our lives than we are to ourselves. And sin? Sin is the ultimate taskmaster of torture and abuse, ruining everything it touches!

In this life, we all will serve somebody: God, Satan, Self, Others… And if it’s not God, all the others wind up in the same pile. Learn to give up control to the One that doesn’t desire to hurt, abuse, or manipulate you. He’s the only Master that desires more for you, to make you His child! You really are loved!