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Posts Tagged ‘serving uphill’

sisyphusSisyphus is a character in a Greek myth who was punished for his deceitfulness. His reparation? To push a large boulder up a hill and then watch roll back down again. He experienced, firsthand, futility as a result of his pride. Sometimes, people serve God as though it’s a punishment: they repeat and repeat the tasks and get the same results and wonder why. Being a servant to God should not be drudgery and if it is, something is terribly wrong.

Jesus called them together and said, “You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their high officials exercise authority over them. Not so with you. Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be your slave— just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many. [Matthew 20:25-28, NIV]

Warren Wiersbe identifies one of the core reasons for this type of dreary service: the servant lacks understanding of the principles that underlie the work.

different giftsWhether it’s volunteers or employees, everyone needs to know how they fit into the big picture. It doesn’t really matter how clever or creative or well-funded we might be, without a substance understanding of why we are asked to do what we do, the task becomes heavier and heavier, the joy escapes like air from a balloon, and the grumbling begins.

If you are serving uphill, stop and take a break. Ask questions of the leadership. Pray about the part you have been asked play. And if those two things don’t line up, test other tasks. No two people necessarily serve in the same way. It’s the whole foot-hand/eye-ear scenario in I Corinthians 12, “There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit distributes them. There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord. There are different kinds of working, but in all of them and in everyone it is the same God at work. . . .  Now if the foot should say, “Because I am not a hand, I do not belong to the body,” it would not for that reason stop being part of the body. And if the ear should say, “Because I am not an eye, I do not belong to the body,” it would not for that reason stop being part of the body. If the whole body were an eye, where would the sense of hearing be? If the whole body were an ear, where would the sense of smell be? But in fact God has placed the parts in the body, every one of them, just as he wanted them to be. If they were all one part, where would the body be? As it is, there are many parts, but one body.” [verses 4-6, 15-20]

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