The Steadfast Servant
And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men.
Paul in this last part of chapter three in the book of Colossians was defining some key boundaries to establishing a solid Christian home. However, the principle defined in verse twenty three gives us a foundation for success if it is applied to everything that we do both within our homes and without. For me, this verse holds a very special place in my life because it has been an everlasting anchor that has held me to a principle that has excelled me in my career, as well as, many other areas in my life. It truly has been one of my life verses.
One area that this verse can strengthen your walk with Christ and truly exemplify solid Christian ethics is in the area of serving others. All of us are servants in some form or fashion. We serve our families, our church, our employer, our friends, and the list goes on and on. But Paul gave us this perspective of acknowledging God in all that we do, so that God may be glorified not only in your willingness to serve, but the manner in which you do so.
There is such great joy and fulfillment that can be received by serving God through serving others. Often times many people might feel a rush of joy as they begin to serve, however, soon after they find that it is not as fulfilling as they had hoped. This lack of joy and fulfillment in serving others often comes for two primary reasons. First, many Christians do not feel fulfilled in serving others because the manner in which they have been asked to serve does not line up with their own personal desires. Many people are only willing to serve others on their own terms. They want the nicest conditions, the best placement, and the highest praise for their efforts. In other words, many people are willing to serve as long as they are comfortable and get exceptional recognition for their “selfless” efforts. But if we are willing to stay focused on the fact that we are serving God in whatever we are doing, it will motivate us to crucify our desires and serve whole-heartedly no matter what the conditions and regardless if others see our service or not. As we read in the scriptures, we find that many who had hearts committed to serving God seldom had everything going their way, but they served with all their heart because they knew that God can truly accomplish great things through people who do not give Him boundaries within which He must work.
Second, many people do not feel steadfast joy and fulfillment in serving others because of the manners and methods in which they serve. Many Christians feel that their service is in vain and often it is because they are half-hearted in their efforts. If we are not careful we will allow our emotions and present situations to dictate the sincerity and completeness of our commitment in any area that we serve. For instance, have you ever known someone who started a new job and was very excited to show everyone around them how hard a worker they are and how committed they can be to Christ through their employer. I mean this person shows up early, stays late, and is willing to really “go the extra mile,” but then their employer disagrees with them, maybe even demotes them and they become bitter, then they start showing up late, taking longer breaks, and spend their days watching the clock drag on towards quitting time while spending company time checking personal emails and posting on their social media sites? This is why the Apostle Paul directed us to acknowledge that it is God we are serving in whatever we do because in doing so, our service will be exemplary no matter what is going on around us or who agrees with us; which will again bring glory to God and show others His strength in us to press on whole-heartedly in undesirable conditions.
Remember; when we are focused on serving others in the same manner that we serve Christ, it will prevent us from taking shortcuts and will motivate us to go the extra mile. It will also prevent sinful actions from entering our situation which will hinder us from demonstrating our commitment to Christ and our desire to serve Him faithfully through joyfully and willingly serving others. – God Bless
A Prayer of Repentance
God, I come to you in Jesus’ name. I confess that I have sinned against You and have come short of Your standards. Thank You for sending Your Son, Jesus to pay the price for my sins. Jesus thank You for dying on the cross for me. I repent of my sins and ask You to be the Lord of my life. I give you my life today and I receive God’s free gift of eternal life. Thank You Lord for saving me. In Jesus Name, Amen.
If You Act Now!!
They immediately left their nets and followed Him.
– Matthew 4:20-
It is no secret that we live in a product-driven society that is constantly seeking to convince people that they need more, more, more. One commonly used catch phrase that is often heard to capture the attention of a potential buyer is the phrase; “If you act now”. Many people, when they hear these four precious words cannot move quick enough to get their credit card ready, even before they know what their “acting now” will get them.
Jesus’ disciples also had an; “if you act now” moment. Peter and Andrew, Jesus’ first two disciples, had an opportunity to previously meet Jesus through John the Baptist. They knew that He was the Messiah and was excited to have met Him. After this meeting however, Peter and Andrew returned to their job as Galilean fisherman. Then one day as Jesus was walking by the Sea of Galilee, He saw these two at work and offered them the opportunity to follow Him and He would make them fishers of men. Then we find that “immediately” they left their nets and followed Him.
Peter and Andrew, as well as, Jesus’ other disciples, were not going to pass up an opportunity to walk with and to learn from the Messiah. When Jesus offered this blessing to them, they didn’t hesitate to “act now”. By them immediately leaving their nets at that very moment, they demonstrated to Jesus their belief and passion for Him, in knowing that He was the Christ. These adventurous men did not have to forever give up their passion for fishing, for we find other passages where they are out on the seas fishing even after they were called by Jesus. But it was about obedience at that particular moment.
All of us have opportunities just about every day to “act now” and follow Jesus. Many profess to have love and commitment to Christ, however, are unwilling to lay down their “nets” at any given moment to honor the Master’s request. It’s not about quitting your job or dropping the ball to follow Jesus, but it is about being obedient in the moment to step away from what currently has us preoccupied, to honor the desire of Jesus’ heart.
If you have ever felt the need to call someone and let them know you are thinking about them, or maybe there is a troubled coworker that you really feel led to comfort by talking and giving them some Godly wisdom, or if you feel the desire to immediately pray for someone; well, these are opportunities to lay down your “nets” and follow Jesus. If you “act now” in these moments, and are willing to briefly step away from what you are doing to follow Jesus into that person’s life, not only will it demonstrate the love and compassion of Christ to them at a crucial moment in their life, but it will fulfill your desire to be a fisher of men. God Bless.
A Prayer for Commitment
Father, today I welcome the opportunity to serve you through serving others. Thank You for the opportunities that You give me to show others how much You love them through thoughtful words and actions. Father today I vow to be committed to following You wherever You may lead. Furthermore, I will not allow myself to be so busy that I am unwilling to lay down by net at any given moment to be obedient to Your Will. I pray this In Jesus’ Name, Amen.