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December 18, 2018

At a Moment’s Notice…

“If any of you wants to serve Me, then follow Me.  Then you’ll be where I am, ready to serve at a moment’s notice.  The Father will honor and reward anyone who serves Me.” John 12:26 (MSG)

How available are you?  The real adventure of faith has more to do with our availability than it does our ability.  In fact, the responsibility of every Christ follower is simply to respond to His ability.  When we are restfully available and instantly obedient, we can experience the joy of knowing that at any given time under any circumstance God has total access to use us in His enterprise.  The pressure is not on what to do as much as it is on being available and rightly related to Him.  Being rightly related to Christ means we are looking daily for where God may be at work with a willingness to join Him in whatever activity is needed. Rather than asking God to bless our agenda, we’re seeking to serve in areas where He is already blessing!

When I see where God is at work in someone’s life or in my church am I available to serve?  Too often I think we are waiting to feel led.  Sometimes the led part becomes more like lead in the seat of our pants weighing us down making us slow to respond and serve.  Even Christ followers can begin to interpret service as “serve-us”.  It’s human nature to want to be served.  It’s also human nature to be selective about the level of service.  We rarely choose the lowly tasks.  Afterall, we’re much to qualified to do that.  But read the challenge of the One who said He came not to be served but to serve and to give His life as a ransom for many:

“The more lowly your service to others, the greater you are.  To be the greatest, be a servant.” Matthew 23:11 (LB)

Service is a measure of our love for God and others.  Look at the way the writer of Hebrews puts it in Hebrews 6:10 (NLT)

“For God is not unjust.  He will not forget how hard you have worked for Him and how you have shown your love to Him by caring for other believers….” 

This verse tells me that we best express our love for God by loving others.  We best serve God by serving others.  It reminds me of what Jesus told His disciples in the Olivet discourse in Matthew 25:40 when He said,

“I tell you the truth, when you did it to one of the least of these my brothers and sisters, you were doing it to Me.” 

This gives me a new outlook about serving.  When I serve others, I’m serving Jesus!  It’s not about me or even the ones I’m serving.  It’s about serving Jesus and honoring Him.

Every day we have that opportunity before us.  Are we waiting for others to serve us or are we willing to serve others?  Every weekend church’s around the world are praying for more Christ followers to become active in serving.  When Paul wrote to his friend Philemon, he challenged him to partner with him in ministry.  He said,

“I pray that your partnership with us in the faith may be effective in deepening your understanding of every good thing we share for the sake of Christ.”   Philemon 1:6 (NIV)

That challenge came with a promise.  As we serve God by serving others, we partner with one another in an eternal work that promises to deepen our understanding of every good thing we share for the sake of Christ! 

No wonder Jesus told His followers,

“If any of you wants to serve Me, then follow Me.  Then you’ll be where I am, ready to serve at a moment’s notice.  The Father will honor and reward anyone who serves Me.” John 12:26 (MSG) 

When you are restfully available and instantly obedient you are ready to serve at a moment’s notice.  And get this,

“The Father will honor and reward anyone who serves Me.”

Jesus said! Don’t miss the blessing and benefits of serving!  This Christmas season offers so many opportunities for you to serve in a local church and in your community.  For those of us at Woodlands Church I challenge you this Christmas season to make serving part of your worship experience.  Jesus told us to

“Worship the Lord our God and Serve Him only.” Matthew 4:10b

You can do that by worshipping at a service and serving at a service in your local church as we partner to bring the message of Christmas to a lost and dying world.  If you haven’t already signed up to serve, we would love to have you join our team at any one of the 27 Christmas Eve services at a Woodlands Church Campus near you.  Just scroll down to register for a place to serve!