In my youth group, we have an Emerging Leaders group which I am part of. What we’ve been doing for the past nine months is reading a book called “Celebration of Discipline” by Richard J. Foster. In it, we learn disciplines like prayer, meditation, service, and celebration to name a few and practice them so that we can place ourselves in a position where God can use us. This past meeting, we discussed the chapter of Service. One of the main stories that were used in this chapter was the story of when Jesus washed the feet of His disciples. He was the Son of God, but he humbled himself to the position of the lowliest servant. Whenever I heard the story, I always said to myself, “If God ever asked me to do that, I would do it.” I wanted to be in God’s image and follow what Jesus did. So I would wash the feet of followers or travelers if it meant that I was doing God’s will. But what about cleaning my room? Or doing the laundry? I never think of those things as things that God thinks is important to Him. Does the Bible talk about Jesus cleaning His room? Or doing His laundry? Because of this, I don’t always do it automatically after my parents tell me to or do it with an ungrudging heart.
What about at school? What if I provide my service to school mates and they use my and walk all over me? I’m doing them a service and they should appreciate it! Right? This is one thing I struggle with. I have no problem doing things for other people, it’s just when they take advantage of it, I say, “Nope! None of that! You just un-deserved my service! Too bad, so sad!” That’s not the right attitude though. For, who can hurt someone who has freely chosen to be stepped on? That’s my problem. Right there. I can freely give my service, but my pride tells me to hold on to my dignity, for I am too good to be stepped on. That’s a very wrong way to think. Why do I deserve to be the best? The most privileged? Am I that special? No, I’m not. When I serve someone, I am serving God. When I lay myself before the feet of others, I’m laying myself in front of God. When I show my pride to the ones I serve and say, “No, I’m too special for that,” I’m saying that to God. Me … saying that … to God. Wow. That’s defiantly not right. It’s scary to think about how long I might have been saying that, and God hasn’t striked me down with lightning yet. When I serve others, I’m serving God. He will give me the joy of service, even though free service requires nothing in return. He gives us the generous gift of joy. The purpose of service is to acknowledge others and affirm their worth, and by doing so, through them, we are serving God.