Saturday, December 24, 2011

The gift of service

Much of our time these days before Christmas might have been filled with trying to find the perfect gift for someone. 

I do enjoy shopping for friends and I love to see their reaction when they open the gift that I am hoping will be the perfect gift.  But I know for sure that the greatest gift that I have ever given and the greatest gift that I every received has been the gift of service.

When I accepted the gift of Jesus Christ and the salvation that He offered me, I realized that I had met the greatest servant that ever walked the earth.  Jesus was the perfect example of a servant. He was born to serve God and His children.  Jesus not only washed the feet of His disciples, He preached, He healed the sick, cleansed the lepers, raised the dead, cast out demons and died for me.

With Jesus as an example, we too are called to be servants.  "What does the Lord God require of you, but to fear the Lord your God, and to walk in all His ways and to love Him, to serve the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul." Deuteronomy 10:12

I have altered my prayer after reading  Deuteronomy 10:12.  No longer do I spend much time asking God to bless me.  Instead, I spend more time thanking him and asking him how I can bless Him and others.  "Lord, how can I serve you today?"

In Matt 10:7-8 Jesus instructs us to serve mankind exactly as He did "As you go, preach saying the kingdom of God is at hand, heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out demons."
Romans 12:1 tells us that our "reasonable service to the Lord is to offer our bodies as a living sacrifice."
Paul called himself a "bond servant" (service by choice) of Christ. 

As we celebrate Christmas our thoughts often turn to Mary, Mother of Jesus.  I believe that the greatest thing that Mary every did in her life is the same thing that we can do.   She said YES to God.  Mary said "behold the maidservant of the Lord!  Let it be to me according to your word." Luke 1:38 

Let this be the Christmas of giving the perfect gift.  Giving of our lives for the service of others.

Merry Christmas!