TODAY'S WORD FOR Wednesday, April 29, 2020:
One who performs tasks for another person. One who works for or is in subjection to another.
When He was in the house, He asked them, “What were you arguing about on the road?” But they kept quiet because on the way they had argued about who was the greatest. Sitting down, Jesus called the twelve and said, “If anyone wants to be first, he must be the very last, and the servant of all.”
KNOWLEDGE AND EXPERIENCE:
There is a natural desire within us to be great or to be the leader. People desire greatness because others look up to those who achieve something great.
The disciples were just ordinary people but they had egos. Each desired to be greater than the others. One day as they were walking to Capernaum they began to argue about who was the greatest. When Jesus asked what they were arguing about the disciples were too embarrassed to answer. Jesus did not need the disciples to answer because He knows all of our thoughts.
We can only imagine the look on their faces and how they must have felt when Jesus said to them, “If anyone wants to be first, he must be the very last and the servant of all.” Their egos must have been crushed. This was a far cry from the disciples’ idea of greatness.
Those who would be great in the kingdom must humbly serve others. Jesus lived by example. What He taught He did.
When Jesus left His home in heaven to come to this earth, He came to serve. As His disciples, we have been put on this earth to serve a lost and hurting world. The story of Zacchaeus in Luke 19:1-9 gives us several Christ-like qualities that we need to develop in our lives if we are to serve as Jesus did.
First, we must be aware of what is happening around us and who might need our help. Zacchaeus was perched in a tree and even though there was a crowd around Jesus, Jesus stopped and took notice of this man because He knew he had a need. Zacchaeus was a tax collector and very rich. In spite of his riches he was a needy man. He was hated by the people because tax collectors were renowned for collecting more than what was owed to line their own pockets.
Secondly, to be a servant we must be available. Jesus was headed to Jerusalem to fulfill the most important act in human history, our redemption, but He still took the time to have dinner with a spiritually needy man.
Finally, we need to show the quality of acceptance. Jesus did not say to Zacchaeus to clean up your act and then I will come to your house. We are called not to fix people but to share the transforming gospel of Christ.
When we are called to serve, by our Lord, it means that we need to first die to our selfish attitudes and motives. Only then can we live to glorify Christ. Jesus told us, as recorded in Matthew 27:37-39, that the greatest commandment is to love God wholeheartedly and then to love others as ourselves. Ironically, it is only when we humbly serve others that we experience God’s fullness in our lives.
In Revelation 22:12 we are told that we will receive a reward for serving Him, every man according to what he has done. All service, large or small, done in His name will be blessed. Some rewards will be given in Heaven; other blessings can be experienced now on this earth. We know great joy in our hearts when we allow God to bless others through us and we should have great satisfaction in realizing that we are pleasing Christ when we choose to be a servant to others.
Our memory verse for this week is found in Romans 6:23.
For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Give me a servant’s heart with a desire to serve others. Open my spiritual eyes to see all the needy people around me. May I be attentive to Your voice so that I do not miss opportunities to serve others today.
These Family Devotional thoughts are written by Dr. Ken Phillips, Executive Director of America's Hunger
Solution, and his wife Dottie. Ken has had ministry positions
with The Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, World Vision, Youth For Christ, World Opportunities International,
and World Bible Society. He also has consulted for more than 30 Christian ministries in management and stewardship
development. They have published a book called No Problems Only Situations that discusses the journey of their family.
Ken and Dottie have been married for 60 years, and have 6 children, 20 grandchildren, and 3 great grandchildren. Their
second book, TODAY'S WORD, includes 365 daily
devotionals and is now available for only $10.
Ken & Dottie Phillips
May we encourage you to send a DONATION to help:Deliver a box of food to feed a poor family for one week in the inner cities of America --- the poorest of the poor and/or to children and their families in a third world country. (we deliver food boxes to 20 third world countries.)
SPONSOR ONE BOX FOR ONLY $7.00
CLICK HERE TO MAKE A DONATION.
(All gifts are income tax deductible)