What does it mean to serve?

What does it mean to serve? Can we learn from Jesus? Can we define it?

I believe so, I believe that radical involvement can be boiled down to one-word service. From the word service, I believe flows all aspects of what it means to be radically involved.

In the 21st century we often think of good and bad service, we can vocal about the level of service we receive.

A word often associated with service is servant.

Servant, being a servant is often seen as being oppressed, taking the word servant further it goes to slavery, slavery has had many faces over the centuries and is still around today.

I am saying all these things to build up a picture, to bring to life I hope this word involvement to lay the foundation for what I am about to say.

We are called to serve!

Galatians 5:13-14

13 You, my brothers and sisters, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the flesh; rather, serve one another humbly in love. 14 For the entire law is fulfilled in keeping this one command: “Love your neighbor as yourself.”

Those of us who are followers of freedom are called to be free, but these verses remind us that this freedom is not to be abused, not to be used for our desires, but rather to serve one another. To serve, to become a servant to others.

Remember last week when talking about being a radical disciple? We looked at how we were called to love our neighbours?

We need to become radically involved in the lives of others. Not in a negative nosey way but in a service way.

1 John 3:18

Dear children, let us not love with words or speech but with actions and in truth.

Just want to say that we are not called only to serve the people we like.

Luke 6:27

27 “But to you who are listening I say: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you,

This can be where it gets hard. Can you serve your enemies? Can you show kindness to those who have hurt you, or oppressed you?

No having heard what I have said so far you may be sitting here or watching online thinking “I don’t want to be a servant, I don’t want to serve, why should I?”

I would like to offer the following as to why we should be willing to, why we should want to serve:

Philippians 2:5-7

5 In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus:

6 Who, being in very nature God,

did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage;

7 rather, he made himself nothing

by taking the very nature of a servant,

being made in human likeness.

Mark 10: 43-45

43 Not so with you. Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, 44 and whoever wants to be first must be slave of all. 45 For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”

The Son of God, Jesus showed us the way and demonstrated that even though He was God he came to serve, to sacrifice.

We are called to be more like Christ, to become Christ-centred, a topic which Nigel will preach about next week.

If it was good enough for Jesus surely it is good enough for us?

Even the business world is catching on to this.

Zig Ziglar says:

You can have everything in life you want, if you will just help other people get what they want.

So, my question to you is what does service, what does radically being involved look like in your life?

Could you serve your community by sacrificing some of your free time to volunteer at a project like a food bank or a litter pickup?

Could you serve by being more generous?

At the heart of service being radically involved is sacrifice.

Just as Jesus sacrificed for you are you prepared to sacrifice to serve? He is our example.

I want to go back to that thought we had at the start:

In the 21st century we often think of good and bad service, we can be vocal about the level of service we receive.

How vocal can we get people to be about how the Christians they know are serving their community?

If we can get people to be vocal about the good things we do, surely God will be glorified, and surely His Kingdom will be advanced!

Serving reflects that it is not all about ourselves.

Serving is something modeled by Jesus and the Apostle’s so we need to take it on board.

I believe that in serving the opportunities arise for God to do amazing things. To demonstrate His power, love, and compassion.

Serving is going to look different for everyone, stage of life, etc plays a big role.


Ask yourself the following question(s)

  1. Am I serving?
  2. Is my serving a sacrifice?
  3. When I have answered those questions pray and ask “what do I need to do?

If you would like to watch a full message on serving check out this video

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