Rev. Jon Schell: Serving like Jesus
The night before he was crucified, Jesus washed his disciples’ feet. In washing their feet, He served as an example to us, living out his words “…the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.” — Mark 10:45.
Since Jesus humbly served, so should His followers. Scripture says “Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position.(or willing to do menial work) — Romans 12:16. Is there any type of service to God or others that you feel is below you?
If the church were a boat many would think of it as a cruise ship, where only a few serve, and the rest go along for the ride! But in reality, the church is a battleship where every member has a task assigned to them by our Captain, Jesus Christ. What role has He given you?
Romans 12:5-8 tells us to use our gifts to serve God and one another and if we seek His kingdom first, He will give us all we need. (Matthew 6:33) Concern yourself with His affairs, and He will meet your needs.
Love motivated Jesus to serve and he did it voluntarily. He said, “I lay down my life — only to take it up again. No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. — John 10:17-18
Do you voluntarily choose to serve? Duty and responsibility are good, but love is better! Paul said, “Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. — 2 Cor 9:7
Love motivates people to help others in a way that duty never could. But that does not mean that we will always love to serve in a specific way. It means that our love for Jesus and others will compel us to serve even in unpleasant ways.
Philippians 2:5-8 says that Jesus laid down his life for us, “even death on a cross!” Remember how the woman who anointed Jesus’s feet with expensive perfume showed extravagant love for the Lord? In the same way, when Jesus died on the Cross for sinners, His extravagant love was on display. Jesus did not serve for selfish reasons. He wasn’t looking for the limelight or fulfillment. He sincerely wanted to serve others. Nails did not hold Jesus to the Cross. Love did.
If you want to serve the Lord, first check your motives. Do you serve because of what you get out of it, or because of your love for Jesus and others?
Jesus has invited us all to serve one another. May we use what we have to help other people and may we be motivated by our love for them and for our Savior Jesus Christ.
Rev. Jon Schell is pastor of St. Luke’s Church in Granite Quarry.