Give me a word, Lord: SERVING GOD BY SERVING OTHERS

Matthew 25:35-40 For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’ “Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’ “The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’

Mark 10:44-45 and whoever wants to be first must be slave of all. For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”

It is December 1st which to many officially marks the first day of the Christmas season. Everyone is beginning to get serious about finding that perfect gift, decorating their homes and trimming the trees. We can’t help but get excited this time of year, and it happens to be the most wonderful time of year for many reasons. Of course, the most important reason to be of good cheer is because Christmas marks the celebration of the day that our Messiah came to earth in human form. That precious baby was born and placed in a manger and grew into the Savior of the world. That is definitely a reason to celebrate! Also during this season, we see more acts of giving and serving than any other time of the year. People open their hearts and homes, and the attitude of giving seems to come so easy during the month of December.

Serving God is our duty as a Christian. Of course, we say serve God on a daily basis, but the question is how? How do we serve God? Jesus explained it well in Matthew 25. We serve God by serving others. Let me say that again for those of you in the back. We serve God by serving others! Yes, it is true. Our pastor has told us many times that we can gauge our love for Christ by how well we love others. Well, today I’m going to add to that and say that we can gauge our service to Christ by how well we serve others.

Let’s look at words that came from the mouth of Christ. “For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’ “Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’ “The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’ Jesus is speaking to His disciples and explaining that whatever we do to those in need, we are doing to Him. He tells us that when we feed the hungry or give drink to the thirsty, we are serving Him. When we invite a stranger in, we are serving Him. When we provide clothes to the poor and when we care for the sick, we are serving Christ. When we visit those in prison, we are visiting Christ. Can’t you see? When we are serving others, we are serving Christ.

I always tell my patients that I won’t ask them to do anything for their health that I wouldn’t do. This conversation usually comes up when I am explaining the importance of getting a colonoscopy. Nobody ever wants one, but I always assure them that I scheduled mine as soon as I turned fifty, and that they should schedule theirs too. I’m sure that I learned that lesson from Christ, although I would never try to compare myself to Him! Christ came to earth in the form of man 2000 plus years ago to serve. “For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.” He didn’t come to be served. He came to serve. He’s not asking us to do anything that He didn’t do. He served the entire time He walked this earth, and He continues to serve us. Service involves suffering at times, and oh yes, do y’all remember the suffering that our Savior endured for us? He served and He suffered. We only think that we are enduring a bit of suffering here and now. That doesn’t even compare to the suffering our Savior endured on that cross to save us from our sins! How can we help but serve Christ when He loved us and served us so greatly?

Today I pray for a servants heart, a true heart with an attitude for service. I pray that Christ will open my eyes to see those in need and my ears to hear their needs. I pray that I can truly be of service to Christ through my daily actions of service to others. Let’s get out there and serve today!

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