What is service?
Service is the manner of life for those who follow Jesus. Love is most convincingly given to us by the self-sacrificing of God in the person of Jesus. As those who follow Jesus, we learn from Him how to love others. Jesus teaches us how to want good and do good even for those who are difficult to love. Our work, either paid or volunteer, is a way that we show love to others. It even becomes possible for us to love our enemies because of the transforming work of God in our lives.
Here are some scriptures that help us understand serving and loving others:
“Do you understand what I have done to you? You address me as ‘Teacher’ and ‘Master,’ and rightly so. That is what I am. So if I, the Master and Teacher, washed your feet, you must now wash each other’s feet. I’ve laid down a pattern for you. What I’ve done, you do. I’m only pointing out the obvious. A servant is not ranked above his master; an employee doesn’t give orders to the employer. If you understand what I’m telling you, act like it—and live a blessed life (John 13:12-17, the Message).
“To you who are ready for the truth, I say this: Love your enemies. Let them bring out the best in you, not the worst. When someone gives you a hard time, respond with the energies of prayer for that person. If someone slaps you in the face, stand there and take it. If someone grabs your shirt, giftwrap your best coat and make a present of it. If someone takes unfair advantage of you, use the occasion to practice the servant life. No more tit-for-tat stuff. Live generously” (Luke 6:27-30, the Message).
“You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind; and your neighbor as yourself.” And he said to him, “You have given the right answer; do this, and you will live” (Luke 10:27-28, NRSV).
I give you a new commandment, that you love one another. Just as I have loved you, you also should love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another” (John 13:34-35).
Let love be genuine; hate what is evil, hold fast to what is good; love one another with mutual affection; outdo one another in showing honor. Do not lag in zeal, be ardent in spirit, serve the Lord. Rejoice in hope, be patient in suffering, persevere in prayer. Contribute to the needs of the saints; extend hospitality to strangers (Romans 12:9-12).
Who can serve?
All of the time, anyone can serve others. We serve together in many exciting ways such as going, sending and receiving short term missions teams. We also serve at an enrichment night for needy children in our community in partnership with another area church. We visit the elderly in nursing homes. We build bridges and friendships with those who are needy and at-risk. However, beyond service being something that we do, we aim to become more genuinely loving people in the way of Jesus. We also invest a lot of time in training young people in this way of live.
E-mail Pastor Roberta (firstname.lastname@example.org) to request information about ways you might get involved in serving together with us.
To learn more about service listen to Bishop David Kendall’s sermon on the Good Samaritan from Luke 10.