“Serve as it is the first time you served; Serve as it is your ONLY time serving.”
It was so fitting for me to hear that saying while at the closing celebration of a weekend where I felt led to “serve” others in whatever capacity was needed in setting up the dining room for meals, with food preparation, and clean up from the meals.
I had never helped at this place before though my family and I have helped at a soup kitchen monthly for several years. I went into this weekend feeling like I was there to be a servant; being available for whatever task was needed, no matter how menial. It made me think about that is how Jesus was the ultimate servant, who came to this earth to SERVE, one of the most powerful ways being dying on the cross for you and me. Jesus came to serve, NOT to be served.
I envisioned Jesus doing even the most menial of tasks, liking wiping food off of chairs, vacuuming the crumbs off the floor, emptying the garbage, with love and in humbleness. I believe Jesus thought NO task was without value especially when done in love and humbleness. Jesus did not think He was above anyone or think that He was exempt from doing any menial task.
Photo credit by Sapphire Dream Photography under Creative Commons License (CC BY-NC-ND-2.0)
Whenever I work at the soup kitchen or in this kitchen, I try to be attentive to what others may need in whatever task they are performing and try to be there to assist them….maybe giving them a utensil they need when their hands are full, consolidating food into one container so the dishwasher person could get busy scrubbing the baked-on lasagna pan, etc.
I was truly blessed to be able to serve others that weekend especially since it ended up I was one of the younger people. I did not know any of the people there, but they certainly made me feel welcome, sharing hugs often with the main lady who was so happy I came to help. It is truly a blessing to talk with other people, try to see why they have the perspectives they have due to their life experiences, and to share the Christ in me.
There was one lady who was kind enough to take me under her wing, and filled me in as to how things worked, where things were and the history of things. She truly blessed me in our interactions, and we seemed to think very similarly in our serving of others. Her willingness to extend herself in sharing with me made me realize the importance of me doing that when I am in my local soup kitchen….reaching out to be friendly to any new comers who may be helping out.
Servanthood is a way of life. Looking for even the littlest ways of serving others is something I think Jesus did while on this earth.
No matter what we do, we need to do it in love and because of Christ in us…May we strive to be more like Jesus every day…serving others with love and humbleness.
Are there places or ways God may be calling you to step out more and serve others? I think often we get so stuck in our routines that we might not step out and serve in some different way. It would be awesome to go help at this kitchen again, and to see some young faces there too….we are ALL called to serve one another in love and humbleness!
Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving. –Colossians 3:23-24 (NIV)
Whoever serves me must follow me; and where I am, my servant also will be. My Father will honor the one who serves me. –John 12:26 (NIV)