Today’s devotion is based on Sunday’s message: SERVE with your gifts! To listen: CLICK HERE
Who gets the credit?
Perhaps the quick response of the Christian is “Of course, God does!”
Or does he?
In the end, yes, service to be to the glory of God. It is the purest of purposes, but it is the hardest of motives.
We like to be recognized.
Sure, every Christian community can do better at encouraging and building others up as they are blessed by another’s service. This is a great opportunity.
However, we can evaluate who gets the credit by our heart’s reaction when WE get no credit.
What do I mean?
Service in the church takes time, energy and effort. It is not always easy and often times a sacrifice. You can serve in your ministry faithfully for weeks, months or even years. But what can lead to discouragement and stepping away from the area of service is the lack of recognition or appreciation. When I get no credit it is hard for me to show up the next time and serve with joy. Eventually I may think, “What I do, doesn’t matter.” And so I quit.
You could serve in Kids Ministry for months and never does a parent come up and appreciate what you and your staff are doing. It’s discouraging.
You can greet people every Sunday, but no one ever says, “Thank you, your warm greeting made a difference.” It’s hard to keep a smile.
You can serve as church Council member for years and people only complain to you about something at church and never appreciate the long hours in meetings and extra activities. It’s hard to be willing to serve another term.
Our human emotions need the encouragement of others. Like was said, we can do better at encouraging one another.
2 Corinthians 13:11 Finally, brothers and sisters, rejoice! Strive for full restoration, encourage one another, be of one mind, live in peace. And the God of love and peace will be with you.
So when you see someone serving and blessing others, encourage and appreciate them.
However, even as we need human encouragement, remember that your service is first to the Lord. The reason we all serve IS to glorify him. So remember this:
1 Corinthians 15:58 Therefore, my dear brothers and sisters, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain.
So, we end the week the way we began with the encouragement of St. Peter:
1 Peter 4:10 Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms. 11 If anyone speaks, they should do so as one who speaks the very words of God. If anyone serves, they should do so with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ. To him be the glory and the power for ever and ever. Amen.
Apply: Have fun serving the Lord! Want to better understand how? Here is an assessment tool which includes spiritual gifts, but also other inputs to best determine how God has uniquely gifted you. Click here: www.freeshapetest.com
If you would like help discerning the results and how to use them, at the end of the assessment, email the results to firstname.lastname@example.org. Christy serves as our member ministry coordinator at Crosspoint and whether a member here or not, she can help you plug into the body of Christ where God has you!
Prayer: Spirit of God, thank you for the gifts you have graciously given to me. Engage my heart with a focus of using those gifts to always glorify you, the Father and the Son, my loving, gracious and giving God! AMEN.