Do You Serve by Sacrifice or by Love?
Matthew 22:37…Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.
When you truly love a person, you will want to serve that person with joy and energy because of your love for him. You will want to do things for that person that will make that person feel loved.
Luke 10:38-42 …Martha received Him into her house. And she had a sister called Mary, which also sat at Jesus’ feet, and heard His word. But Martha was cumbered about much serving, and came to Him, and said, Lord, dost Thou not care that my sister hath left me to serve alone? bid her therefore that she help me. And Jesus answered her and said unto her, Martha, Martha, thou art careful and troubled about many things: But one thing is needful: and Mary hath chosen that good part, which shall not be taken away from her.
God’s word tells us in Romans 12:7 that if a person has the gift of ministry, let him wait on his ministering. Many times a person who has a servant’s heart is often in a hurry to serve, but he must learn to wait for the promptings of the Lord to lead him serve.
Here is an example of two women who used their ministries of serving. Mary and Martha both loved to serve. Mary knew when she should stop serving and sit and the feet of Jesus. Martha was cumbered about with serving. She was overwhelmed and overloaded with her work. She was stressed out because she was serving without the Spirit’s leading. Martha wanted to do the right thing and serve the Lord by preparing a meal, but she was more focused on her sacrificial service than loving the Lord with all her heart, soul, and mind. There are many Christians today who are more focused on the activity of serving than they are on loving the Lord.
The older I get the more I realize that I must serve others out of a deep love for the Lord instead of obligation or sacrifice.
As I serve others, I should not serve them because of my selfish ambition or vain conceit, but I must serve them with humility and with a Christ-like attitude that considers another person’s welfare more important than my own.
Philippians 2:3-5 Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves. Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others. Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus.
When we serve others, we must serve them with a sincere love. This is a love that is without hypocrisy or deception. I should hate those things that are evil and cling to those things that are good. I must be devoted to serving others by honoring them above myself.
Romans 12:9-10 Let love be without dissimulation. Abhor that which is evil, cleave to that which is good. Be kindly affectioned one to another with brotherly love, in honour preferring one another.
God’s word tells me that when I attend to the needs of another, I am doing this as a service for Christ.
Matthew 25:35-40 For I was hungered, and ye gave me meat. I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink. I was a stranger and ye took me in: Naked, and ye clothed me: I was sick and ye visited me, I was in prison, and ye came unto me. Then the righteous answer Him saying, Lord, when saw we an hungered, and fed Thee? or thirty, and gave Thee drink? When saw we Thee a stranger, and took Thee in? or naked, and clothed Thee? Or when saw we Thee sick, or in prison, and came unto thee? And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily, I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.
My desire to please others through my service must not be self-centered. As I see others who are discouraged, I should do all I can to build them up and encourage them.
Romans 15:1-2 We then that are strong ought to bear the infirmities of the weak, and not to please ourselves. Let every one of us please his neighbor for his good to edification.
I shouldn’t complain when I use whatever gift God has given me to serve others. I should use my gift God with His grace. If I use my gift to speak, I should speak the very words of God. If I use my gift to serve others, I should serve them with all the strength that the Lord gives me. As I begin to use my gifts with the Spirit’s leading, I bring glory, power, and praise to God through Jesus Christ.
I Peter 4: 9-11 Use hospitality one to another without grudging. As every man hath received the gift, even so minister the same one to another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God. If any man speak, let him speak as the oracles of God, if any man minister, let him do it as of the ability which God giveth that God in all things may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom be praise and dominion forever and ever. Amen.
In Mark chapter 14, Mary of Bethany served the Lord not only with sacrifice, but also with all of her heart, soul, and mind. When she broke the alabaster box and poured the ointment on His head, she was condemned by all those around her. Jesus told the others, “Let her alone; why trouble her? she hath wrought a good work on me.” In verse 9, Jesus says, “Verily I say unto you, Wheresoever this gospel shall be preached throughout the whole world, this also that she hath done shall be spoken of for a memorial of her.”
Lord, let me do the little things
Which may fall to my lot:
Those little inconspicuous ones
By others oft forgot
If, like the Master, I can give
Myself for those I love,
Rich joy and peace shall come to me,
Sweet rest in heaven above.
I know not when the day shall close;
But when life’s curfew rings.
I want my Lord to find me then
Still doing little things.—Unknown.