There are less than two weeks left of SLT 2016. Crazy, I know. Last week’s teaching was one to hold on to, as usual, and coax to life in the following days. Luke Hukee came from Des Moines to teach us about servant love – what our Savior has given us, what He has modeled for us, and what it means to serve like Jesus.
Simply, it means to put yourself in the tangible place of a servant, to do things that only a servant would do, below others.
// ‘He poured water into a basin and began to wash his disciples’ feet, drying them with the towel that was wrapped around him.’ // John 13:5
What does it look like to serve like Jesus? Washing feet? Doing uncomfortable things? Serving is an attitude that produces a lifestyle. It’s a way of thinking. The same mindset as Christ.
// ‘Think of yourselves the way Christ Jesus thought of Himself.’ // Philippians 2:5
Serving requires an attitude of humility, getting down low. It requires us to understand this God that we serve, whom He is.
Practically? Become smaller so you can grow healthy. Be intentional about spending time with each other every day. Choose to be engaged. Be interested in one another, be considerate, be genuine, be great. God exalts serving. Greatness comes from giving up our rights and sacrificing our freedom to serve others. He is the one that will reward us for serving; He is the one that always sees.
Servant love is essential for community, because the priorities are clear: life is not about me. It’s about the people around me. It’s not about pleasure, or what I get out of it, but it’s about following Christ. The result? People are cared for and relationships are strengthened. We become a family.
The reality is that we’re all a family, and we all know that you provide for your family. You take care of them. You serve. Because if we’re not serving someone, we’re living for ourselves and just using people. The most important reason to be in community is that it validates the Gospel. The world is starving for authentic love – real caring. Being together is vital, but serving is more about our relationship with God. Serving the body is how we serve Jesus. Fellowship with one another starts with fellowship with God.
// ‘God is light; in Him there is no darkness at all. If we claim to have fellowship with Him and yet walk in darkness, we lie and do not live out the truth. But if we walk in the light, as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, His Son, purifies us from all sin.’ // 1 John 1:5-7
Fellowship is the day in and day out (Acts 2). Being together, physically, on a daily basis. Every day, every believer should teach truth, give counsel and advice, and sing with a grateful heart. This reminds us of the Gospel and what our common mission is.
// ‘Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts.’ // Colossians 3:16
To have fellowship, there needs to be a common mission. If that is lacking, people won’t remain in community. We find our common mission in service and sacrificial acts of love that promote the message of Christ. It is obvious to everyone when someone’s priority is fellowship with other believers, and when they are actually valuing something else above Christ and over fellowship with other believers. It becomes really clear when they start avoiding community.
// ‘One who isolates himself pursues selfish desires, he rebels against all sound judgment.’ // Proverbs 18:1
What are the benefits of living life together, you may ask? Luke has the answers! Unity is developed. We are sanctified, meaning we grow more and more submitted to the Lordship of Jesus. We grow up, and we reach maturity. We have the opportunity to actually obey Jesus, because there are over a hundred and fifty “one another” commands in The Bible. Our gifts are realized, utilized, and matured. We are protected.
The bottom line is that we need strong relationships to help us walk through life. That’s how we learn to follow Christ! By people teaching us, coaching us, and reminding us of what God has done. This is what will change the world. Jesus said it. Do we believe it?|