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Today I want to you about biblical servant hood. Let me first tell you about this mother who was teaching her son at home and she asked him to Write a sentence about a public servant,
The little boy wrote: “The fireman came down the ladder pregnant.”
She thought for a second and kind of mulled this over in her mind and asked him, “Don’t you know what pregnant means?”
“Sure,” he said “It means’……. carrying a child.”
Okay, let’s see here if we can shed some light on being a servant!
First, let me say that what we’re gonna talk about today IS NOT A CALL TO GET PEOPLE TO WORK IN THE CHURCH. What it is, is a WAKE-UP CALL to what true BIBLICAL SERVANTHOOD is, whether it be in your family, at work, in school, and yes….even here in your church family, serving those in the community, our friends and neighbors…..both inside and outside our church family.
Today I want to talk to you about the GREATEST quality that Jesus exemplified…………that quality is that of a servant.
Let’s define Biblical servant hood: The dictionary defines servant hood as, “one who serves others”. Close, but no it’s actually more than that.
Biblical servant hood is “One that allows something to be accomplished through them”.
So, what I want to do is share a little wisdom that will help you become a better servant, wisdom that will allow God to accomplish much through you. After all, as we choose to follow Jesus, we choose to become a part God’s mission on this earth to be a part of the restoration of this world.
Let’s start by reading out of the Scriptures. We will be reading Isaiah 6:8.
Now, the first thing that I want to share with you about BIBLICAL SERVANTHOOD is:
1. “A servant helps where help is needed”
One day when I was around 13 years old I remember my momma giving me a list of things to do while she was at work one of them was to weed the flowerbeds. You see she worked all night to put food on our table and I had to help take care of my little brother and sister. Well, I didn’t get the flowerbeds done……..I hated pulling weeds! But I vacuumed the floors and cleaned the house. I remember her clearly telling me “Jan D……help isn’t help unless it’s needed!” She always had these wise sayings. She couldn’t do the weeding because she slept during the day but she could do the vacuuming and cleaning house! She had a point! I didn’t really help her, I did what “I” wanted to do, not what she needed done!
Another thing I heard over and over from my momma was, “Jan D.! If YOU want to do something, YOU GET IT DONE! but if ”I” need you to do something you find a million excuses not to do it! Help isn’t help unless it’s needed!” I think most of you parents can relate, right?
The Biblical application of my mother’s wisdom is: “When “I” want to do something, ”I” get it done!. But how often is it that when God wants me to do something I find a hundred reasons why I can’t do it!” When I look at Jesus and His time on earth in every instance He gave help where it was needed. It was never about HIM. It was always about someone else.
Let me tell you about a TRUE servant here at LifePoint………now I have to admit…..there are many! But this is one story of many! My brother, Tony Holmes, who is back on the sound board today, was a new Christian. He was just figuring out what following Jesus meant. Tony had been a DJ. So he knows quite a bit about sound equipment. He signed up to serve on the Setup team. YEP…..6am in the morning comes early! That’s where the help was needed! Truth is……..ultimately he wanted to work with the sound crew on the sound board.
Tony served probably for over a year on the setup crew, setting up chairs and stage and finally, learning the backline (which is running all the cables and speakers and technical equipment so that the band can be heard). It’s quite a responsibility.
Finally there was an opportunity to run sound on the sound board. You see Tony figured out that first part he helped where help was needed. God figured out the second part.
HERE IS THE PRINCIPAL: Jesus tells us in Matthew 23, verse 11 & 12:
Matthew 23:11-12 (TNIV)
11 The greatest among you will be your servant. 12 For those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.
It’s important to serve for the right reason. It’s important to be a part of something bigger than us to help where help is need. When we humble ourselves to do what is needed, rather than what “WE” want to do, we often find ourselves in the end doing exactly that………serving where “OUR” heart desired but the key was, we helped where help was needed because that’s the heart that God wants us to have.
HERE IS THE APPLICATION: ASK “WHAT needs to be done?”
BEFORE you tell someone what it is you want to do. Serve with the right heart and you will end up doing what you wanted to do.
The second thing that I want to share about BIBLICAL SERVANT HOOD is that:
2. “A servant doesn’t worry about what others are doing, ………….a servant is focused on what Jesus is doing with them”
You know, I often think that the most important thing in life is that we have a moldable spirit and that we be willing to be in God’s classroom. One of the greatest lessons I learned in life is that God……… indeed Jesus is working on ME! How often do we hear God’s wisdom and say, ”Yeah, and people should listen and learn that”, when we should be saying, “How can I apply that to MY life?”
Let’s look at the Gospel of Mark, chapter 9, verses 33-35:
Mark 9:33-35 (TNIV)
33 They came to Capernaum. When he was in the house, he asked them, “What were you arguing about on the road?” 34 But they kept quiet because on the way they had argued about who was the greatest. 35 Sitting down, Jesus called the Twelve and said, “Anyone who wants to be first must be the very last, and the servant of all.”
Yeah, what they were arguing about was who would be doing what. They weren’t focused on Jesus or the mission before them! IN PRIDE…..they were focused on who would be doing what and when!
I shared this story on Facebook the other day in one of my devotionals. It bears repeating: Back around 2005, I remember once when I was at work in my previous job as financial administrator for two companies here in Lake Mary. A friend was given a raise and not me. He was NOW making more than me. I did the finances, so I knew these things. I worked late and came to work early and it really upset me deeply that my friend was given this raise. He basically worked 9-5. I knew that the next day I would be a firecracker waiting to explode on someone. I stayed home and prayed. You see, truthfully, the boss had every right to do what he wanted with his own money. Truthfully, I know that I must I ultimately put my trust in God and SERVE God. While my boss is my boss……God is my salvation and mentor in life.
It’s more important that I serve in life with the right heart! God, indeed Jesus, taught me a lot through this experience. If you are there to serve with a heart like Jesus, you aren’t comparing yourself to everyone else! I CHOOSE TO BE IN GOD’S CLASSROOM!
It’s funny that my wife knew I needed to be alone that day, so she went shopping all morning so that I could pray. I was really hurt and upset! I did pray. I asked God for perspective. I asked for strength and I told God I knew what was right but needed His strength to help me carry it through.
Well, I felt a peace come over me and the next day I was able to go to work without all this pain, bitterness and hatred that I had begun to experience two days before. It is also interesting that a year later when my company started laying off all its employees, I WAS NOT LAID OFF. My friend was. It’s as if Jesus said to me, “Well done good and faithful servant! You resisted the temptation to harbor bitterness and hatred. You resisted the temptation to have to be first. You forgave and put your trust in me.”
HERE IS THE PRINCIPAL: You see, so very often in life I have learned this lesson. Yes, indeed, “Anyone who wants to be first must be the very last and the servant of all.”
HERE IS THE APPLICATION: Ask yourself, “What needs to be done”. Don’t worry about what everyone else is doing. First ask the question, “God, what are you doing in me? What do you want me to learn in this?”
The third thing that I want to share about BIBLICAL SERVANT HOOD is that:
3. “A servant doesn’t need a pedigree”
I have been told often that “Jesus doesn’t call the qualified as much as he qualifies the called” No matter WHO you are or WHO you think you are, God can use you in ways you might not be able to imagine! The key is, ask God, indeed, ask Jesus, ”What do you want me to do? And I’ll do it!”
When I felt called to pastoral ministry in 2003, I remember quite a few nights sitting out in my studio, the JamminStation with my wife……… in tears…..wondering, “How could God call me? I spent 10 years in addiction; I’m an old soldier (emphasis on the OLD). I’m rough around the edges. I haven’t been to seminary. HOW CAN YOU CALL ME?” BUT I LISTENED …….and just as important, I said, “Lord, equip me, lead me, teach me, show me what you want me to do and I will do it!”
Isn’t it interesting that when Jesus called the first disciples He called simple fishermen and a tax collector? Jesus didn’t call the qualified He qualified the called!
There’s a book called “Scandalous Freedom” by a man named Steve Brown. In this book there’s a poem that I want to share with you called “Remember God Can Use Anybody!”
The next time you feel like GOD can’t use you, just remember that
Noah was a drunk, Abraham was too old.
Isaac was a daydreamer and Jacob was a liar.
Leah was ugly and Joseph was abused.
Moses had a stuttering problem and Gideon was afraid.
Samson had long hair and was a womanizer.
Rahab was a prostitute.
Jeremiah and Timothy were too young.
David had an affair and was a murderer.
Elijah was suicidal and Isaiah preached naked.
Jonah ran from God and Naomi was a widow.
Job went bankrupt.
Peter denied Christ.
The Disciples fell asleep while praying.
Martha worried about everything.
The Samaritan woman was divorced, more than once and Zaccheus was too small.
Saul was too religious Timothy had an ulcer and…….
Lazarus was dead!
HERE IS THE PRINCIPAL: “God doesn’t necessarily call the qualified…..He qualifies the called”
HERE IS THE APPLICATION: Ask first, what needs to be done? Ask next, ”What are you doing in me? What do you want me to learn in this?” And ask God, “Show me what you want me to do and I will do it!”
The very last principal that I want to share with you about BIBLICAL SERVANT HOOD is that:
4. “The only tool a servant need is A WILLING HEART and to say, ‘Yes Lord, I am willing! Here I am, send me!'”
Lord, I am here and I am willing! Show me what you want me to do! Lead me in your ways! “Here I am Lord, send me”!
In my family, at work, at school, in my neighborhood,how do you want me to be? “Here I am Lord, send me”!
I may not feel equipped but you can equip me Lord! “Here I am Lord, send me”!
I want to be a part of your mission, the restoration of this world, the restoration of our lives! “Here I am Lord, send me”!
I want to be a part of your mission, the restoration of this world, the restoration of our lives. Here I am Lord, send me!
Jesus is or greatest example! In Matthew, chapter 20, verse 28, Jesus says:
Matthew 20:28 (TNIV)
28 just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”
What Jesus was saying was, “Father God, I am here, not MY will but YOUR will! Here I am, send me!”