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Friday, April 14, 2017

Serve

14 Then we will no longer be immature like children. We won’t be tossed and blown about by every wind of new teaching. We will not be influenced when people try to trick us with lies so clever they sound like the truth. 15 Instead, we will speak the truth in love, growing in every way more and more like Christ, who is the head of his body, the church.16 He makes the whole body fit together perfectly. As each part does its own special work, it helps the other parts grow, so that the whole body is healthy and growing and full of love. 
(Ephesians 4:14-16 NLT)

What is your "part" in the family of God? So many times we are simply content to allow others to serve around us, while we just observe their service. There is a direct correlation between our service and our growth. One does not occur without the other. Now, don't get me wrong - service is not a way to "earn" anything in God's kingdom, but it is a means by which we put into practice the things we have learned while sitting at his feet and experiencing his grace poured out in our lives.

Not all of us blaze new trails, but without the trailblazers in the group, we'd never discover new things or explore new places. Not everyone is comfortable reading stories and holding the focus of wee ones gathered around in rapt attention while they do, but without them many a parent would not have the opportunity to enjoy some time with other adults in worship. Not all possess the skilled craftsmanship of a carpenter, but without them we'd find our homes devoid of many a beautiful piece of furniture.

Since we all possess a little bit of a different "talent" or "skill", similar though they may be, it is important that we utilize what we possess for the good of the whole! This is the principle of the whole body "fit together" perfectly - each doing their part - each appreciative of what the other offers regardless of how "small" or "insignificant" their "service" may seem. 

Mom is blind, only being able to make your your shape or form. When one of the gals or guys who serve as greeters at church welcome her and comment about how wonderful she looks, she may not recognize their face, but she appreciates so much being acknowledged and welcomed! They each play a part in encouraging her at 98 to still be there enjoying fellowship right along with them.

We become stronger when each does their part - regardless of how different that part may be, or how "changing" it may seem over the course of time. It may be you find yourself of "service" by praying for someone God places on your heart today - not really knowing how to reach out to them or what their specific need may be, but just knowing they need to be lifted up to Jesus in prayer and then doing just that. It might also be that you adjust someone's cane that is too long or too short for them, making them a little unsafe in using it to "steady their gait", but that small act of service can keep them safe and help them in ways untold.

Service doesn't have to be big, but in serving we all grow. Maybe it is because when we show how much we appreciate and have been embraced by God's grace through returning fragments of that grace in some form of service to each other, we are revealing an element of God to them that they needed the most at that moment. The single parent needed that time away from the kiddos to just regroup, find strength for another week, and to be "refilled" for the many tasks ahead. The struggling married couple needed to know that others struggle with similar issues of trust, insecurity, and communication. 

We are placed in community because it is where we find out just how much God's love can be reflected in different ways and through different instruments. Be an instrument of his love today - serve! Just sayin!