I always choose the wrong lane on the motorway… No matter which one I choose, there seems to be a faster one!
Starting the year is like choosing a lane.
Are you trying to choose the lanes in your life, trying to swap between… Or will you take his pathway in 2017? The new year is an opportunity to make a change. Change the lane!
Psalm 65: 11 You crown the year with your goodness and your pathway drips with abundance
One of the characteristics of God's pathway is serving.
Jesus came to serve us and has called us to serve him.
Titus 3:14 ESV
And let our people learn to devote themselves to good works, so as to help cases of urgent need, and not be unfruitful.
And let our people learn to devote themselves to good works,
We have to learn how.
It's a learning process. If you don't learn - we will just go with what's easiest! Serving is never the easiest thing to do. Too many Christians are just doing what is easy, but that doesn't produce any fruit in their lives.
Consequently the world doesn't see the fruit of following Christ. Why would people want to go to church - if they can't see the fruit in our lives?! Our faith is not about living an easy life - it's about following Christ and producing fruit. Serving doesn't come naturally to most people, certainly not in this generation but it is what sets us apart.
Matt 20: 28
just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many
What are you devoted to?
The word doesn't just say to do some good works but: learn to devote yourself - love it! My boys do Saturday work - They do it because I ask / make them, but I would love to see the day they are devoted to it! Dad “we are here and ready to serve!!” God is our father is looking forward to the day that we devote ourselves to serving Him. That we would come and say, Dad “I'm here and I'm ready to serve”.
so as to help cases of urgent need,
Without Christians serving, urgent needs don't get met. There is so much need in our nation and without the church acting together, we cannot really change anything. Serving enables the church to be effective and impacting.
Without serving the church becomes a glorified social network, the army of God becomes a social club - we can’t let it happen. There are urgent needs! Serving meets the needs of people and reflects Christ in our actions. Lets meet some needs this year!
and not be unfruitful.
God has created us to be fruitful
John 15: 8 This is to my Fathers glory that you bear much fruit showing yourselves to be my disciples
Serving leads to fruitfulness.
We show ourselves to be Christ's disciples as we serve. Without serving we become consumers - heard it all, seen it all, been there, done that... Serving awakens your faith and makes you feel part of the great commission!
I've had some of our great servants questioned - why do you do it?
It is the Christian life - if you haven't served - you haven't walked with Christ! It's not an optional extra, there is no other Christian life. He is the ultimate servant and he calls us all to serve. Like Jesus, we are most effective in life when we serve. With our committed efforts God will cause kingdom fruit to be produced in our lives and in the church
Great reasons to serve
1. TO GIVE SOMETHING BACK
I have received a lot - I want to give something back!
God has been so good to us, It blesses God as we serve.
You have given everything for me - what can I do for you
- Bob Dylan
Ephesians 2:10 LB It is God himself who has made us what we are and given us new lives from Christ Jesus; and long ages ago he planned that we should spend these lives in helping others.
2. OBEDIENCE - WE ARE ASKED TO SERVE
In 2017 find a way to please God
Romans 12: 11 Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord.
3. THE POWER OF UNITY
We are better together
“The Church is the Church only when it exists for others...not dominating, but helping and serving. It must tell men of every calling what it means to live for Christ, to exist for others.”
― Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Letters and Papers from Prison
It's only together that we can have the impact our City needs to see. I believe together we can see something special in 2017! Imagine a whole church that serves together, what could that church could achieve!
4. IT IS A WITNESS - IT DEMONSTRATES OUR FAITH!
Don't just have a season / a good patch when you were involved and served. Overcome the challenges - and devote yourself to serving! Don't let your employer see the best of you and God gets a few scraps, The odd serving role - the odd working bee, give your best to the Lord.
2017 is such an opportunity to step into something new in God. Some people are going to discover who they are in Christ! Some people are going to be part of a great kingdom victory! Some people are going to throw off selfishness and anxiety and throw themselves into the Cause!