A Call to Serve

November 27, 2013

Today's guest post comes from one of my dear friends Dustin.  He e-mailed me this post last week and told me these things had just been laid on his heart and he wanted to share them with me.  I could use his words in whatever way fit.  After I read his words, I knew I had to share them with you.  I've got to say, I needed this post.  After you read Dustin's guest post on the true meaning of giving thanks and servanthood, I hope you'll be changed too.   Have a blessed Thanksgiving!


It’s November and that means it’s that time of year where social media is gushing with gratitude, as people turn to Facebook and Twitter to sing praises for the blessings in their lives.  I've never participated in this cyber sensation.  It's not because I don’t have anything to be thankful for, but because I know that I would never be able to keep it going through Thanksgiving.  I have a hard enough time remembering where I put my car keys, much less remembering to post a daily shout-out.

I do however, enjoy reading what everyone else posts.  I've seen a bit of everything over the years from “I’m thankful for my God and my family,” to “I’m thankful for a good shopping cart at Walmart!”  This year,  I've been thinking about the word “thanks” and what it truly means.

When you say thanks, are you genuinely thankful for something or are you just saying thanks because that is what your mama taught you to do when someone did something nice for you?  Saying thank you is thrown around loosely and to a degree, loses meaning.  You can even hear it in people’s voices.  Ever hear someone begrudgingly say “thanks” and think that it took the Jaws of Life to get it out of their mouth?  I don’t know about everyone else, but having someone say thank you that way tends to sting more than not saying thank you at all.  To me, this proves that giving thanks can be powerful since people long to hear it.  However, it is more hurtful than helpful when not delivered appropriately.

What actually prompted me to write about giving thanks was a moment I experienced one night before going to bed.  I walked into the bedroom and my wife was asleep.  I sat down beside her, ran my fingers through her hair and kissed her forehead.  I thought to myself, “I sure am thankful for my wife…and my son…and my family and friends.  God, you’ve blessed me more than I deserve.”   Then I thought about showing thanks to God for what He’s given me.

Do I really show God how much I appreciate the life He has given me? 


When my wife makes me dinner, I’ll sometimes (sorry sweetie!) tell her how great it was.  When she brings me a hammer or some other tool, I’ll thank her for getting it for me.  I’ve told her “thanks” thousands of times.  But is saying “thanks” enough?  Showing appreciation and truly being thankful for someone is done by putting that person’s needs before your own needs.  That is often easier said than done.

"Don't be selfish; don't try to impress others.  Be humble, thinking of others as better than yourselves."


Philippians 2:3 (NLT)


Philippians 2:3 teaches “in humility, count others more significant than yourselves.”  I like to think about it like this:  God made us in his image.  He gave us an array of emotions to feel and experience, gratitude being one of them.

Jesus, God in the flesh, came to Earth to SERVE others, which invoked the very feelings of thankfulness and gratitude that God gave to us to begin with.  Think about what type of emotions would stir inside of you if Jesus were to bring your brother back from the dead, or to heal you of your pain and afflictions.  Honor God by living the way Jesus did, serving others.

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I cannot think of a better way to show God and others how thankful you are for them than by serving.  So now, instead of saying thanks after my wife cooks dinner, I could offer to clear the table and do the dishes.  Or, after she brings me my tools, I could finish working on my project and ask her if there is anything around the house she needs fixed.  The benefit is two-fold.  Not only am I honoring my wife, I am also honoring God.

Proverbs 18:22 states, “He who finds a wife finds what is good and receives favor from the Lord.”  Show God how thankful you are for the blessing that is your wife by loving her as Christ loved the Church.  If you aren’t married, show God how thankful you are for your family, friends, or whatever fills your life by praising Him and by honoring others with your actions.  My challenge to everyone (myself included) during this holiday season is to not demonstrate thanks by words alone.

Show someone how thankful you are by serving them, just like Jesus.


How do you show thanks to your loved ones?


What areas of service is God calling you to in your everyday life?


What scriptures do you turn to during this season of Thanksgiving?




[caption id="attachment_331" align="aligncenter" width="300"]Credit: Dustin Stultz Credit: Dustin Stultz[/caption]

Dustin is a fellow twenty-something that lives with his precious family in North Carolina.  He is  a man on fire for the Lord and has shown tremendous faith throughout life’s trials and triumphs.   


 

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