Are you worthy for service?

Have you ever been in a position where you didn’t feel worthy to serve God in a certain way? Maybe you were asked to pray over the meal surrounded by Christians you thought to be more spiritual than yourself. Or perhaps you were invited to lead devotions, or preach at a service? Perhaps you are a new parent, and you are overwhelmed at the idea of raising a child?

Whatever it may be, I’m sure we have all at times felt unworthy for service. We don’t feel like we are enough. We aren’t skilled, or spiritual, or free of sin or faults.

John the Baptist felt this exact same way.

He was baptizing repentant sinners in the river when Jesus Christ came to him for baptism. Immediately, John was taken aback. He did not consider himself worthy to even put on or take off his sandal. John had such a high respect for Christ, he felt so unworthy.

But was John truly seeing the world correctly? He wasn’t.

John was looking at himself. His unworthiness. He was not looking at Christ and Christ’s needs.

Our Christian life is not about us. It’s not about our needs. It’s about Christ needs. In Matthew 3:15 Jesus said to John, suffer or allow, “it to be so now: for thus it becometh us to fulfil all righteousness.” Christ needed to be baptized. It wasn’t about the worthiness of the man, but about the necessity of the service.

Remember this next time you have an opportunity for service. God didn’t choose you because you were worthy. He chose you because He needed someone. You are never worthy enough to lead a devotion, pastor a church, raise a child, or serve in any other way. God simply offers you the opportunity to serve Him.

“whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God.” 1 Corinthians 10:31

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If your pride helps you do good, is it still wrong?

Pride is an interesting thing. Do you know that pride can actually motivate you to good works? It can! It’s happened in my life several times. Let me explain . . .

In the past, I’ve realized that I have a problem. (such as laziness) Then, instead of repenting with "sackcloth and ashes" and asking God to help me, I decide, "I’m gonna fix this problem!" I set up standards. I make decisions. I enforce resolutions on myself. I will work hard. I will not procrastinate. I will . . .

You see, I decided to fix the problem, without God’s help. It’s not on purpose, but in my heart, I think that I can handle this. Pretty soon, I’m failing at life. I’m no longer procrastinating, but I’m not finding much joy in anything either, and I’m not growing closer to God. In reality, I decided to change, not because I wanted to serve God, but because I wanted to have a good opinion of myself. My actions are feeding my pride and not glorifying God. When I get the sense that God isn’t fully pleased, I’m like, "What’s wrong God? I fixed the problem! I’m trying to serve you! I’m working hard. Why do I feel like I don’t have your blessing?"

I’ve used my fleshly pride to work against my fleshly action of laziness and in the end, I’ve effectively just traded sins. That’s not gonna please God. I’m still in sin. Serving God out of pride is sin just like any other sin.

Have you ever wondered how the Pharisees managed to obey so many of their made up rules? They served God out of pride.

In Luke 18, God tells a story of a Pharisee and a publican. The Pharisee served God according to the outward showing of obedience, but in his heart he was prideful. The publican was humble about his faults. In verse 14, God says of the publican, "I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other: for every one that exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted."

How about you? Do you serve God out of pride? Are you "proud" of all the holy things you do? Or are you humbly seeking a true relationship with your Savior?

I would submit to you, God is not interested in righteous acts that come from an unrighteous heart.

Humble yourself. Ask God to help you. Seek to know God and grow close to Him. He is the one that can change you so that your life will please Him.

After all, It’s God that works in us, both to will and to do, of His good pleasure. (Phil 2:13)

Stepping out lately?

We will always have friends at college or the workplace, or at some other place. Many times we have friends of convenience. Its nice when theyre around, but its no great loss when theyre gone. Successful friendships dont happen by accident.

Marriages do not endure without commitment. Parent-child relationships dont continue after the child is an adult unless an effort is made on both sides. Relationships take work. A good friend of mine likes to sing a song that says, Ill start walkin your way, and you start walkin mine. In truth, thats friendship. Effort that is made on both sides.

So, what about your relationship with God?

Are walkin His way? Or are you walking away? James 4:8 says, Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded. As Christians, do we really think about what God did for us. Do we realize? Think about this, God died for you before you were ever born.

He definitely put the effort in. What else is greater than to die for a friend?

Now its your turn.

Will you make the effort? Will you decide to grow closer to God? Hes waiting for you. Hes calling out to you. Hes watching you. Waiting for you to make the slightest move towards Him.

Wont you make an effort to cleanse your life of sin and have an intimate fulfilling relationship with your Creator? The God of the universe loves you. Hes waiting to have a closer relationship with you. How long will you make Him wait?

Chronic sleepiness?

Have you ever felt seriously tired. I mean, you woke up tired, you dragged yourself throught the morning tired, you got through the afternoon and you were still tired. It seems that our society lives with an intense desire to sleep. I know those days, they’re terrible.

But there’s certain days that I feel like I’m tired, until I’m on my own time. Like, as soon as Im done with all my obligations, I feel fine. I feel awake. Suddenly, the world is brighter, who needs sleep? This phenomena has a name. It’s laziness! I’ve found that if I’m sluggish to do things that matter, and suddenly awake when it comes to recreation, it’s a heart problem.

God wants us to live our lives with purpose! He wants us to act like we are always serving Him. Colossians 3:23 reads, "And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men;" Did you catch that? ‘Heartily’ means something like, ‘putting your heart into it.’ Perhaps something like having a passion for or having a love for. God also wants us to serve Him out of love. (Rev 2:1-4)

So I ask you: Do you suffer from chronic sleepiness that goes away as soon as work goes away? Do you ever want to just sleep when you should be accomplishing something of value? I challenge you, seek to serve the Lord with diligence that comes out of love for Him. Ask Him to teach you to serve Him as He would have you.

If you desire to change, God will help you. And by serving Him well, "ye shall receive the reward of the inheritance: for ye serve the Lord Christ." – Colossians 3:24

What is in thine hand?

Uselessness is something we all feel at some point in time in our lives. We’re humans. Yeah, that’s kinda depressing, but I have some news for you. If you walk in the power of Christ, then you don’t have to ever feel useless. God empowers you to do anything and everything that you need to do.

Our God is awesome.

Let me give you an example. When Moses was commanded by God to bring an entire enslaved nation out of Egyptian bondage, he felt kinda small. He wasn’t sure of himself, or of God for that matter.

He protested and told God that he didn’t think that Israel would believe that he was from God. Exodus 4:2 gives God’s response, “And the LORD said unto him, What is that in thine hand? And he said, A rod.” God then instructed Moses to cast it down and then God turned the rod into a serpent. He showed Moses that he could use anything.

God knew what was in Moses’ hand. God knows everything. I would imagine, in my own head that is, that God was giving us a vision of how powerful He is. It’s kinda like one of those cheap slight-of-hand tricks when the guy’s like, “Pick a card, any card.”

In a way, God was showing how great he was. But it was no trick. God’s power was and is real.

God was showing how great He was, and He still demonstrates His power today.

God wants to use you for great things. He has a plan in your best interest. All you must do is trust Him and follow His lead. God doesn’t need great skill, talent, riches, fame, or beauty. Don’t forget, He created all that. God wants you. He wants to use you for greatness. He wants to show His power through you.

He doesn’t need much. He needs a willing servant.

Are you willing?

Content to hear the boss praise you?

Believing on God is not always the most sociably acceptable thing to do. It isn’t always “easy” and it often requires certain sacrifices. Or maybe we should call them, “realignment of priorities.” As almost any Christian, we would say, “God is first,” but to we live that way?

In John 12, many Pharisees believed on Jesus, but they didn’t confess. Why? “For they loved the praise of men more than the praise of God.” (John 12:43) You see, these men wanted the praise from others. They forgot the person they should have been living to please. They focused on the people around them, and not on God. Their perspective was wrong, their priorities were skewed, and as a result they never experienced God like they should have.

How about you? Are you hesitant to share things about your faith with others because you are wary about what others would say? Do you change your actions, or compromise to please others around you? How about this? When you go to work, are you content to hear the boss tell you that you did a good job when you know you could have done better? Are you striving for the praise of men, rather than the praise of God?

I would challenge you, ask God to show you if you love the approval of men more than you love His approval. If you do, in any way, make a conscious decision to change your attitude. Remind yourself of the person you should really strive to please. Ask God to help you seek for His approval alone. If you live for Him alone, you will never regret it.

“How can ye believe, which receive honour one of another, and seek not the honour that cometh from God only?” – John 5:44

One is your master

Have you ever found yourself changing what you are doing in the workplace because the boss walks by? If your behavior changes when authority is around, you are probably not working for God. Christ commands us to do all our work for Him.

"Servants, obey in all things your masters according to the flesh; not with eyeservice, as menpleasers; but in singleness of heart, fearing God:" – Colossians 3:22 Do we look to please our boss? Is our goal at work to make him happy? We should have a higher goal than that. Our goal should be to make our master happy. As Matthew 23:8 says, "For one is your Master, even Christ." We should not look to please those around us, but look to please Christ. This means to work hard even when our boss is not looking. This may mean going beyond our job description. This may even mean to go against what the authority asks because of moral reasons.

I would like to challenge you. Look beyond your earthly master. Look to Christ. Your service to your boss or any other authority is simply part of your service to Christ. Are you giving your all in Christ’s service?

"And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men; knowing that of the Lord ye shall receive the reward of the inheritance: for ye serve the Lord Christ." – Colossians 3:23-24

Our sufficiency

Have you ever felt useless? Many times we don’t have materials sufficient to the task. We may not have the expertise for the job before us. God wants us to be humble, He wants us to realize that we are not sufficient to any task on our own. It is God which makes us sufficient.

2 Corinthians 3:5 says, "Not that we are sufficient of ourselves to think any thing as of ourselves; but our sufficiency is of God;" In this passage we see Paul telling the Corinthians, first of all to realize they are not sufficient to do anything. Despite all our skills and accomplishments we are not sufficient to live the life God has called us to. If knew only that, we would be hopeless. Thankfully we are not left in that condition. We are not hopeless; God is the one who makes us sufficient.

So I would like to encourage you, don’t look to yourself. You are not sufficient to live the Christian walk. No matter what the task is before you, humble yourself, and look to God. Trust in His sufficiency, and He will make you and shape you until you are capable for the work that He has called you to.

"Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform [it] until the day of Jesus Christ:" – Philippians 1:6

Seeking for the loaves

Do you ever seek God for the wrong reasons? Perhaps you want some material thing from God and you think if you serve Him for so long you will get it. Or perhaps you want something non-material from God. God desires that we seek Him for Himself. That we serve Him because He is worthy.

At one time, the disciples sought God for the earthly benefits. Jesus said to them, "Verily, verily, I say unto you, Ye seek me, not because ye saw the miracles, but because ye did eat of the loaves, and were filled." These people did not seek God for Himself alone, but for their own purposes. What a tragedy! It is sobering to see how much we can miss out on who God is because we only look for what He gives us.

It is the mark of a young Christians when a people seek God for what He can provide for them. I would like to challenge you, seek God that you might glorify Him. Don’t limit your vision to your personal needs and wants. Ask God to change you so that you look at who God is and what He has done. Let His love inspire you to love Him, and that love inspire you to service.

"We love him, because he first loved us." – 1 John 4:19