IN OUR CELEBRATE DISCIPLINE COLUMN EACH MONTH WE ARE LEARNING A NEW SPIRITUAL DISCIPLINE, HOW TO APPLY IT AND HOPEFULLY GROW INTO THE PEOPLE GOD WANTS US TO BE.
SPIRITUAL DISCIPLINES: habits that nurture spiritual growth; exercises unto godliness.
SERVICE: offering resources, influence and expertise for care and protection of others.
"Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: 'Love your neighbor as yourself.' " ~ Matthew 22:37-39
The Christian discipline of service is the way we can share God's love with the world. We are the mouth, hands and feet of Christ in our world today. Unless we see the needs of our friends and neighbors as real and as important as our own we will never really be serving others.
True service requires checking our motives.
Are our efforts all in our own human strength?
Are we trying to impress someone?
Are we looking for an external reward?
Service is rooted in seeing others the way God does. It requires us to put on our Jesus glasses. In service we experience the little deaths that come when we move beyond ourselves into the shoes of another.
The Discipline of Service is worked into our lives with the grace of humility:
- Hidden, anonymous, maybe even secret.
- An act of submission allowing other to serve us.
- Simple acts of common courtesy.
- Practicing ungrudging hospitality.
- Being a listening ear.
- Sharing the Life of God's Word.
Because service is one of my primary Love Languages it comes easier for me than some other things. The main thing I have to remember is to keep my motives pure and serve as unto the Lord. That prevents bitterness from taking root.
JOIN THE CONVERSATION: Where do you like to serve? What can you do different this week?
Celebration of Discipline by Richard Foster
Spiritual Discipline Handbook by Adele Ahlberg Calhoun
The Spirit of The Disciplines by Dallas Willard
Photo credit: valeriylebedev / 123RF Stock Photo