Seeking A Servant Heart

washingfeet

We all want to be noticed, respected and admired…that’s just our human nature and when we don’t get the respect we think we deserve we get frustrated.  Am I right?  

I admit it…I get down in the dumps when someone snubs me, criticizes me or even rolls their eyes at me.  I’ve went for days down and depressed because someone didn’t respect me like I thought they should.  I’ve thought about it and how I could get back at them.  I mean…don’t they realize how great I am!  Yes, I’m joking, but seriously we humans are all alike.  We want to be held in high esteem because frankly, we’re all that and a bag of chips.

Every single one of us on God’s good green earth have felt that way at one time or another.  It’s called selfishness.  We want to be Numero Uno.  When we speak we want it to be a moment like the E.F. Hutton commercial a few years ago.  If you’re younger than me go ask your parents or grandparents to explain it to you.

This morning I was reading my daily devotional chapter which happened to be St. Mark, chapter 9.  Further down in the chapter an event took place that really spoke to me.

And he came to Capernaum:  and being in the house he asked them, What was it that ye disputed among yourselves by the way?  But they held their peace:  for by the way they had disputed among themselves, who should be the greatest.  And he sat down, and called the twelve, and saith unto them, If any man desire to be first, the same shall be last of all, and servant of all.  And he took a child, and set him in the midst of them:  and when he had taken him in his arms, he said unto them, Whosoever shall receive one of such children in my name, receiveth me:  and whosoever shall receive me, receiveth not me, but him that sent me.

Mark 9:33-37 KJV

The disciples were actually arguing while walking with Jesus about which one of them should be the greatest.  That spirit of self-exaltation was prevalent among them just as it is in our society today, so Jesus knew it was time for an object lesson.  He took the little child and held it in His arms and explained if they wanted to be first, they must become last.  They must have a servant’s heart.  Man’s way of being first is stepping on others to move up the ladder of success, blackmail, or even losing their moral values if necessary.  It’s a sad, pathetic game people play and compromise never wins.  If you want to be truly great, to be first, become a servant.  Be willing to go the extra mile, work harder, come in early and stay late, cheer others on, help them accomplish their goals, be cheerful, encouraging in the work place…all these things are the traits of a winner.  Remember that old saying….Winners never quit and quitters never win?  Well, it’s terue.

My heart was pricked after reading the above scriptures this morning, so I quickly repented of my selfish pride and prayed for the Holy Spirit to help me to have a servant’s heart.  I know I’ll never be Mother Teresa, but I do know I can do better.  Lord, help me not to be selfish in any way.  Selfishness doesn’t look good on anyone, but an humbleness looks good on everyone.

Humbly,

The Voice

Palm Sunday Irony

Tomorrow is Palm Sunday.  Ironically my scheduled chapter to read for my devotions this morning is Matthew 27, where Christ is delivered bound to Pilate.

When the morning was come, all the chief priests and elders of the people took counsel against Jesus to put him to death; And when they had bound him, they led him away, and delivered him to Pontius Pilate the governor.  Matthew 27:1,2 KJV

And Jesus stood before the governor: and the governor asked him, saying, Art thou the King of the Jews? And Jesus said unto him, Thou sayest.  Matthew 27:11 KJV
 

More ironic is as Jesus stood before Pilate that day to be tried in reality Pilate was being tried by the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. 

Let us worship Him with loud Hosannas just as the children did that day in Jerusalem when Jesus made His triumphant entry into the city on that little donkey!🙌🏼🙌🏼🙌🏼🙌🏼

The next time He comes it will be on a magnificent white horse and all the world will see Him make His triumphant entry! 

Thank You, Holy Spirit!

ibelongtojesus

This morning while preparing my breakfast I felt led by the Holy Spirit to pray for my grandchildren.  I called each one of them by name and prayed they would have good self esteem.  As I prayed, I felt the conviction of the Holy Spirit telling me the reason my grandchildren struggled with their self esteem was because I had opened the door for this curse.  He reminded me that I had always seen myself in a negative light.  Just recently our oldest grandchild told my husband that I spoke negatively about myself and he was right.  As the Holy Spirit brought this to my attention, I began to weep and ask Him to forgive me.  I prayed and asked the Holy Spirit to help me to never speak another critical word about myself.

When a child grows up in a household with parents who put them down they quickly learn to be critical not only of themselves but of others also.  They see themselves as unlovable and unworthy, but that’s not who they are.  The Bible tells us who we are.  I love this scripture.

I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made:  marvelous are thy works; and that my soul knoweth right well.  Psalms 139:14 KJV

Another reminder of who we are.

To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved.  Ephesians 1:6 KJV

We are His beloved and we are accepted.  We don’t have to prove anything.  He proved His love to us by dying on an old rugged cross…that’s proof enough.

This is a list of who we are:

  • A child of God.
  • A friend of Jesus.
  • Justified and redeemed.
  • Crucified with Christ and no longer a slave to sin.
  • A child of God and fellow heir with Jesus Christ.
  • Accepted by Christ.
  • A temple of the Holy Spirit who dwells in me.
  • Joined to the Lord and one spirit with Him.
  • A new creature in Christ.
  • The righteousness of God through the shed blood of Jesus.
  • Chosen, holy and blameless before God.
  • Redeemed and forgiven by the grace of Jesus Christ.
  • Sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise.
  • Made alive with Christ.
  • Seated in heavenly places with Christ.
  • A citizen of heaven.
  • Complete in Christ.
  • Loved!

We are God’s beloved not because of what we do but because of what Christ did at Calvary.

I thank the Holy Spirit for reminding who I am.  I am God’s beloved.  I am a child of the King and a daughter of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.  I belong to God.  I am His and He is mine!  He loves me just as I am.

Holy Spirit, help me to never forget who I am in Christ.  I belong to Him…what a comforting thought, or rather fact.  I’m the one He loves and that’s enough.  It doesn’t matter what others say, it matters what my loving heavenly Father says.

I am loved and you are too.

The Voice

 

The Least Likely One

The Priest didn’t help. The Levite didn’t help but the least likely one to help did that day. Jews and Samaritans didn’t like each other. Sometimes you will find the least likely one is the one who will come to your rescue and the one you thought would be there for you, will be nowhere to be found when you’re in trouble.

I read an article on Facebook just a few days ago that resembles this story in the Bible often referred to as “The Good Samaritan”.

A policeman was trying to handcuff and arrest a man when the offender got the upper hand and was assaulting him. Many people driving by saw this scenario but made the decision to look the other way, just as the Priest and Levite in the Bible story but a black woman stopped her car, got out and helped the Policeman apprehend the criminal that day.  Later, she said she just saw the terror in his eyes that seemed to say, “help me” and without thinking about the consequences she came to his rescue.

I’m sure they’re were some younger guys or some stronger men who could have helped, but the least likely person chose to help an unknown white Policeman who was in dire need that day. She didn’t pause to think about it she told the reporter later…she just sprang into action. Amazing! No racism here. No women’s liberal ideology clouded her thinking. No fear of what might happen to her…only her human instinct that my fellow man needs help.

Isn’t that the rule we all should live by?  Yes and it’s called ‘The Golden Rule’…do unto others as you’d have them do unto you.

We should especially love and help the ones who are least unable to help themselves, such as the unborn, the special needs individuals, our children, the elderly or those suffering debilitating illnesses and diseases.

Christ loved us when we were unlovable. He cleansed us when we were stained by sin. He fed us when we were hungry.  Love covers a multitude of sin. We are to love others as He loved us.  We are to be like Jesus in this world. If we love God we’ll love others, 1 John 4:20 says. Jesus met people’s physical and spiritual needs because He was love.

Who needs Jesus? Who can you help? Who needs you?

Jesus breaks down the walls of division between: races, gender, nationalities, economic status, age, education, religion and political parties.

Be that least likely one. Together we can make a difference that’s much needed now more than ever.

The Voice

 

His Way Is Best

Sometimes we try to make things happen. Have you ever done that and lived to regret it?
I have and so did Abraham and Sarah in the Bible. God promised them an heir, but when it didn’t happen soon enough, after all they were 90 and 100 years old, they panicked and went into flesh mode. 
Sarah suggested Abraham sleep with her handmaiden. He didn’t object and they ended up with an Ishmael. His birth caused trouble in their household. 
When we force things to happen…it’s never right. Instead let God have His way in your life. His way is always better. Trust His plan and His timing!

Don’t Grow Weary

When a loved one is ill for a long time, when a teenager is in full blown rebellion, when you lose a job, when you deal with a chronic illness…all of these situations can wear you down mentally, physically, emotionally and even spiritually.
Long lasting hard stuff drains all your optimism and can leave you with bitterness, anger or hopelessness instead. Our best hopes, best intentions and best efforts seem lost and squashed. But God wants the best for you.
Don’t get discouraged. Don’t give up. Lean on Jesus and His Word. The hard things your facing will pass and you will be better for it.