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Christian Service


Within our Jesus Christian community, and even within most other Christian denominations, the most heavily emphasized form of ministry is PREACHING. In many ways it is understandable, as it was Jesus' final command to His disciples before ascending up into heaven. (Mark 16, and Matthew 28) But that is not the ONLY ministerial service we are commanded to engage in as Christians. Besides preaching, we are also commanded to SERVE one another, in love; and it is this latter form of ministry that I hope to address in this article.

There are many activities necessary in order to sustain an effective and efficient Christian community. Washing clothes, doing dishes, and maintaining a vehicle would be three such activities. Still, many Christians approach such jobs carelessly, as if these less glamorous jobs do not require us to do them with our whole heart. This should not be so.

In most organizations, and especially in full-time communities like our own, people do not have the latitude to hand-pick every activity that they do. Sometimes jobs are picked for us. That is a realistic picture of the dynamics of co-operating with others while working as part of a bigger team/group.

It seems that when we are given duties and responsibilities that are NOT of our own choosing, it is when we are most inclined to slack off, complain, drag our feet, and just generally not make a strong effort to ensure that our particular responsibility is cared for diligently. (Sadly, there are some people who slack off even when they get to PICK their activities!) This tendency to be less than enthusiastic about some jobs is understandable. We naturally do most enthusiastically what we have freely chosen to do. But one part of the Christian message is that Jesus through His spirit gives us power to transform our nature from its instinctive, selfish state, to make it conform to God's selfless nature. Being "in the spirit" means choosing what God wants, over what we want.

And so, with that in mind, I tend to question the sincerity of Christians who undertake jobs without putting their whole heart into them, simply because they don't "like" the job, because it wasn't their "choice", or because they "can't see the point" in doing it. What is really happening inside an individual's spirit, when they make excuses like that for doing a poor job? You can rest assured that it isn't good. So, why is it that so many Christians still take this grumbling attitude?

Remember that God sees everything that we do. No matter how menial or seemingly insignificant a particular task may seem in OUR mind, God still cares about it. He's still watching, and looking for enthusiasm from each of us. A vision of God and eternity is something that needs to be with us at all times, 24/7. It's not something you can turn on and off like a faucet. This eternal vision (of doing everything as if we were doing it for God) should have a knock-on effect with everything that we do.

To sum up, every activity that we engage in as Christians should be a visible reflection of the inward, invisible relationship that we have with Christ. It is all part of our witness to the world. When people get this vision, it should revolutionize all that they do. Those dishes you are washing… they're God's dishes! That floor you're sweeping… it's God's floor! You're working for God! He is your provider, and it is Him that you are really serving.

So let us never lose sight of this eternal perspective, and let us do all things, no matter what they may be, to the glory of God. (1 Corinthians 10:31) Anything else, on a myriad of levels, really is just a waste of time.

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