How to improve your serve
We live in a self-centered, me-first world. (This is no new revelation to most people.) Unfortunately, this attitude comes so naturally that it often goes unchecked in our lives. But for maturing Christians, this attitude becomes more and more unnatural. We see that selfishness is a negative attitude and move beyond it in our thoughts and behavior.
The opposite of selfishness is being others-centered. An others-centered person sees the needs outside of his immediate world and responds to them with Christ-like compassion. This is not a natural reaction; it’s one that comes when the believer is tuned into the heart of God.
This dependence on God and His power opens the Christian to a new perspective on religion. Religion is no longer a mindless ritual, but a personal response to others that mirrors God’s concerns. James calls this type of action “pure” or “true” religion. True religion cares for orphans and widows in their distress.
A genuine Christian is one who puts his personal needs behind him so he can care for the needs of others. This others-centered attitude is often described as servanthood. A servant shows compassion for the hurting, widowed, lonely, troubled, and hungry by meeting their needs. James equates this type of action with genuine Christianity. If a Christian doesn’t do this, there is good reason to question the genuineness of his faith.
Since caring for others reflects spiritual maturity, we should seek to serve the underprivileged in countless ways. The key is acting on God’s Word and not merely hearing it. Only doers of the Word are truly blessed, because they discover that they are never more like Jesus than when they serve.
How to Improve Your Serve
1. Develop an attitude of humility.
“ Likewise, you younger men, be subject to the elders. And all of you clothe yourselves with humility toward one another, because God resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble. ” 1 Peter 5:5(CSB)
I’m convinced that humility is a process. We become more humble as we spiritually mature. The humble person doesn’t require praise, and can give attention and service to others. But God’s word is clear about His objection to the proud and arrogant. He despises them. However, notice the connection between humble spirits and God’s special blessing in 1 Peter 5:5.
2. Grow in security as God’s person.
“ For am I now trying to win the favor of people, or God? Or am I striving to please people? If I were still trying to please people, I would not be a slave of Christ. ” Gal. 1:10 CSB
A servant knows who’s in control of his life. When we’re insecure we live to please others. But when we’re secure in our Christian identity, we can serve in ways that might appear strange to the world. A true servant isn’t out to impress the world but to serve the world.
3. Remind myself of what God has done for me.
“ Therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, I urge you to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God; this is your spiritual worship." Romans. 12:1 CSB
Thankfulness is one of the major motives behind service. Grateful people are great servants because they understand God’s grace and blessing on their lives. We are fortunate people! And our expression of thankfulness is revealed when we serve.
4. Respond with wisdom.
“Cry out for wisdom. Beg for understanding. Search for it as you would for silver. Hunt for it like hidden treasure. Then you will understand what it means to respect the Lord.” Proverbs 2:3-5
God’s wisdom enables us to discern who, where, and when we should serve. Try waking up tomorrow with a petition for God’s wisdom. Cry, beg, search, and hunt for God’s wisdom to be given to you. Then watch Him use your others-centered attitude to meet needs. That’s true religion.