Servant or Served?
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“Whoever wants to be a leader among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first among you must become your slave. For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve others and to give his life as a ransom for many.”(NLT)
Many of us are aware that love takes many forms. It can come in the form of flowers and gifts or handwritten letters and kind words. It may come in the form of a hug or a kiss, or in a quiet night spent together watching a film.
The kind of love I want to talk about today is the love that serves.
How many busy and over-worked mothers or fathers appreciate it when a load of washing is done without them having to ask? Or when the lawn is mowed so that they can spend some time catching up on some rest? This kind of demonstration of love speaks powerfully to some but not necessarily to others. But it is still, no doubt, a form of expressing care and love for another.
Jesus modelled this style of love for us when He walked the earth. He served. He washed His disciples’ feet and fed the five thousand.
He knew what it meant to love through service.
There is no greater love than to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.
Jesus demonstrated this kind of love by laying down His life for us, so that we may live in relationship with the Father. He served us in the most sacrificial way, not just during His life on earth, but in the way that He died.
Soldiers and members of the military will no doubt understand this kind of sacrificial love in ways that general civilians will not. They daily lay down their comfort and safety to love, serve, and protect the freedom most of us enjoy.
So, what does servant love look like for you?
Prayerfully consider this question in relation to the people you do life with. Ask God to show you how you can bless those you call friend and family by serving them. As I mentioned previously, not everyone communicates loves in this way, or receives love most powerfully in this way, but I believe that if we can adopt a “you first” culture in our loving relationships, we will be modelling the kind of love that Jesus wants us to show.
Let us remember the second greatest commandment left to us by Jesus:
The second is equally important: “Love your neighbour as yourself.” No other commandment is greater than these.
Here are some practical examples of how you can show love to those around you by serving them:
- Do the washing up or load/unload the dishwasher promptly.
- Cook a nice meal, complete with dessert!
- Do grocery shopping and put it away.
- Take the driver’s seat and let someone enjoy a relaxing journey.
These are obviously small and relatively humble ways we can serve others, but it’s often the smaller tasks that wear us down the most, so give it a go!
My prayer is that, as we begin to serve one another in love, our respective loads will become lighter, and we will feel loved and cared for as never before.
Scripture is quoted from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.
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