Listen to this devotional:
Listen while you read: "Who Is He In Yonder Stall"1 (Lyrics)
The recreational vehicle park in which I live during the summer has a variety of activities, many of which include a meal, often for as many as a hundred residents. This involves several days of preparation by the person who is in charge of the kitchen. This year, it's Robbie, a sweet lady who loves the Lord, has a servant's heart, and knows how to organize everything so that the food is prepared on time and the volunteers who help her know what to do.
At one recent event, I complimented her on how everything turned out, and she responded, "We serve a different Master." She understands the concept of servant leadership, and she also knows Whom she is serving as she organizes these events.
Jesus had an opportunity to explain servant leadership when James and John privately approached Him and asked for privileged positions of honour.
Mark 10:41-45 – When the ten other disciples heard what James and John had asked, they were indignant. So Jesus called them together and said, "You know that the rulers in this world lord it over their people, and officials flaunt their authority over those under them. But among you it will be different. Whoever wants to be a leader among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first among you must be the slave of everyone else. For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve others and to give his life as a ransom for many." (NLT)
Jesus makes it clear to them that what it means to be great is to be a servant, something He repeatedly modelled in daily actions and in His final sacrifice for our sins.
Last week, in one of the ladies' Bible studies that I lead, we discussed this relevant challenge from Paul:
Philippians 2:2-4 – Complete my joy by being of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind. Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. (ESV)
In his study of Philippians, Warren Wiersbe labels this as being single-minded: concerned about the fellowship, furtherance, and faith of the gospel, rather than the rewards that we might get, what others might think of us, or how we might be lauded by others for what we have done. It's looking at the world from heaven's point of view. It's what will bring us true joy as we serve Him Who became a servant for us.
As we go through this week, let's think about how we can be single-minded. How can we serve others without thinking about the benefits that we will receive? Who around us needs our attention, our skills, our help? How can we bring Christ to them through our service?
Prayer: Father, You gave up the glories of heaven to come to earth. You humbled Yourself to die on the cross for our sins. Help us to serve others as You modelled for us. Amen.