The measuring stick of our commitment is not our lip service. It's our LIFE! You were born for a reason and with a purpose. If you want your life to add value to others, your actions in life must be based on your values, action is the guage, not mrere words or thoughts.
Here are six thoughts to help you add value to your life and others.
1. Selfish motives prevents a servan'ts minstry. So many people serve for the simple of fact of being acknowledged. Their service to others is all about themselves. They want to look good to booster the EGO. Service so often becomes an I GO, and you didn't. I DO and YOU DON"T. To truly serve is to serve with a humble heart... Not a PROUD one. God is not upstairs looking down on you and saying man...thank GOD you're serving because if you didn't the whole world would stop. My whole plans for the world would come to a grinding halt, if it weren't for you...newsflash....when you serve with a proud heart...God is NOT IMPRESSED! At the end of the day it's not about you...it's about HIM. A proud heart is you focused, a humble heart is him focused.
2. Following rules cannot save us, but following JESUS can. So many people fail to add value to their life and others because they feel like they can't follow the rules. I have to look a certain way, act a certain way, do certain things...because the church says that is only way for me to have impact. If you want to have impact try following JESUS and not the rules. A legalistic heart is again a proud heart until you realize that you can no longer keep up with the rules...then it just produces shame. You were made for more than following rules, you were made to love JESUS. Keep in mind that Jesus broke all the rules and because of him the world was forever impacted.
3. A lifestyle that costs nothing is worth nothing! Say what you mean and do waht you say. So many Christians become hypocrites. They will act one way Monday-Saturday and then a totally different way on Sunday! How can you impact anybody when all they see is a flip flopper.
4. A FAITH that is only in my head is dead! If you are not living what you believe and sharing what you believe....do you really believe? Your faith has two parts...doing and sharing.
5. Faith JUSTIFIES the leader and, the leaders WORKS justfiy the faith. Faith without works is dead! How you work at your faith validates your faith. What are you doing...if anything to justify what you believe? It is not enough to slip in and slip out of church un-noticed.
6. A worthless past is resolved by a present that works. Are you always more than the sum of your past mistakes. The only person keeping you in prisioned to your past is you! If you are still alive it is because GOD is not done with you yet. You still have a purpose and it is never too late to start working on it.
In church you hear the idea of serving being preached. In most, healthy churches serving is a necessity simply to keep the function of how Sunday is done working. So we serve because there is a need for it on Sunday? Hummm, I wonder if that was what Jesus really had in mind when he talked to the disciples about serving?
I came from a very large church that ate, slept, and breathed...serving. They are ranked as one of the country best churches from a serving standpoint. They literally have a 70-85% in attendance serving ratio on any given sunday. For years my wife and I were part of that ratio. We drank the kool-aid. We fully bought into serving. And for five years we served in any capacity we could...even if we weren't scheduled to. We literally had this mentality of living for Sundays. As a matter of fact, that is very statement is said by the church leadership. After five years of serving this way we began to wain from our enthusiasm. We hit a point of burn-out.
As I look back on that chapter I can't help but ask how and why did we hit a burn out point with serving for God. If we were burned out only after five years, how are people really suposed to live their lives serving? Is it even possible.
In reflection and prayer three things came to mind about serving and why we got burned out.
1. Serve from the heart with nothing to prove. In the beginning, when we first started serving that was our position. We simply served because we knew we had the capacity to help. We didn't have an agenda behind our serving. However, over the five years our heart had changed. We started serving with the right heart, but when the church really began to grow...in a massive way...we found ourselves serving simply to be seen by the masses. We were serving with our friends, and serving really became more of a "HEY LOOK AT ME, LOOK AT WHAT I AM DOING" mentality. We were serving to be seen with something to prove by being seen. Our heart had become hardened to serving for the right reason. We were serving to be noticed by the church staff to be elevated to a leadership position.
2. Serve from the heart with nothing to lose. When we started serving this was our mentality. We could care less what anybody thought. We simply saw the church had empty spot and we could fill it and help them out. However, over the five years what began to happen was we had built a reputation of serving. For us our church popularity had grown because we served. We started out serving simply to serve and not be served, but over the years we weren't serving to simply serve, but we were serving to be have our ego and our popularity served. Our focus shifted from giving to getting...from giving our time to getting recognized.
3. Serve from the heart with nothing to hide. Over the years we developed a facade or fake image to our serving. We would literally complain about it at home and smile about it at church on Sunday. What a joke we had become! We lost our capacity to remain authentic, vulnerable and transparent. We couldn't fully rejoice with the church over the victories for Christ because we were too worried about our own personal fame.
Heres the reality, if you find yourself getting burned out by serving God...,maybe you should check yourself and your heart for serving. When your heart is right, burn out isn't possible. You must love people more than your position. Your heart loves people, your head loves position. Jesus wants your heart, Satan wants your head. The enemy wants nothing more than to attack your heart by manipulating your head. This happened to us, and thankfully God led to repent. It wasn't easy as we completely withdrew from serving all together.
By Gods grace, today we are able to serve with more passion and with more joy, and so much more love than we ever thought possible, because our focus is not our own personal spotlight, but on God's spotlight.