To serve and not to be served
The Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve… —Matthew 20:28
We somehow have the idea that a person called to the ministry is called to be different and above other people. But according to Jesus Christ, he is called to be a “doormat” for others— called to be their spiritual leader, but never their superior.
Ministry is about serving! This is what Jesus was trying to get the disciples to grasp, and it is prayer that we will gain a better understanding of it as well today. Whether you are on staff or if you are serving as a volunteer here this morning we must not get to a place where we believe the lie that “we are better than those we are to serve!” V21 Jesus ask “what do you want?” So what is it you want today, do you want to serve or are you looking to be served? You can’t have both dear friends; to be a servant of Jesus means you are to serve EVERYONE all the time. Paul’s idea of service was to pour his life out to the last drop for others. But the chief motivation behind Paul’s service [it] was not love for others but [his] love for his Lord. If our devotion is to the cause of humanity, we will be quickly defeated and broken-hearted, since we will often be confronted with a great deal of ingratitude from other people. But if we are motivated by our love for God, no amount of ingratitude will be able to hinder us from serving one another.
Paul’s understanding of how Christ had dealt with him is the secret behind his determination to serve others. “I was formerly a blasphemer, a persecutor, and an insolent man…” (1 Timothy 1:13). In other words, no matter how badly others may have treated Paul, they could never have treated him with the same degree of spite and hatred with which he had treated Jesus Christ.
Once we realize that Jesus has served us even to the depths of our meagerness, our selfishness, and our sin, nothing we encounter from others will be able to exhaust our determination to serve others for His sake.
Let me leave you with this final thought;
Genesis 1.27 “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.” This is the scripture I hold dear in my heart towards all men if I believe that we are all created in His image then what right do I have to disrespect any of His children. Like Paul I take no glory in my sin but to remember how wretched I was and how wretched I still am apart from Him. If I desire to serve His people I must first desire to be His servant. Only then will I have the capacity to serve those He has placed me under as a minister - Pastor J