Presented on 10/3/2016 at Curwensville Alliance by Pastor Steve Shields
As a Christian, why do you do the things you do? Why do you go to church? Why do you give to the kingdom? Why do you teach children, lead a small group, or work in the nursery? Why do you help in the kitchen?
There are many answers people might give to these kinds of questions. This podcast suggests the best motivation for serving God. And, despite what some might think, it’s actually a choice you can make — the choice to build a life of gratitude.
Presented at Curwensville Alliance by Pastor Steve Shields on 9/11/2016
Several years ago, something happened in a restaurant that surprised me, embarrassed me, and then angered me.
I was eating with a man who had been attending my church, and the server was having trouble making things work. She messed up our drinks, she didn’t get our order exactly right, and she didn’t attend to our needs well at all. I can live with that, although I generally let my tip reflect the level of service I receive. And, because my wife worked in food service, a server really has to mess up to get anything less than 20% from me.
But the man I was sitting with (notice I haven’t referred to him as a gentleman) unloaded on her. He made sarcastic comments. He expressed heavy sighs of contempt when she apologized, and in the end, he spoke to her so strongly that she left the table — probably to go to the kitchen and cry. That surprised me because the man I was with was intelligent, and to me, one of the most basic concepts intelligent people understand is this: Do not antagonize the people who handle your food. Second, it embarrassed me, because that man was attending my church at the time. There’s this thing called “patience” that is a “fruit of the Spirit” that Christians generally exhibit. And it angered me because it was obvious that she was struggling, and all he did was make her day more miserable.
That story could be used to illustrate many things. I simply want you to see it as a reminder of how little we honor service to others. But Jesus didn’t have contempt for service. Jesus practiced servant-hood and expects his followers to do the same.