So I got to be honest with you . . . my initial desire to do a post on serving came from a place of frustration. I had a situation where someone had communicated a desire to “serve me,” only to later learn that “serving me” was just a means to another end.

I guess a part of me processing my disappointment involved getting on S&D to tell all you youngsters about your duty to serve those ahead of you—that is, if you ever want to see your hopes and dreams fulfilled. I know . . . how stupid and self-centered! Thankfully, God got my attention, and now this post might actually be of some use.

A simple Google search of “what did Jesus say about serving” quickly led me to the realization that I was the one who had things all wrong. I was allowing my warped view of serving to dictate my life and, in truth, my acts of service were directed toward Man, not God. My next move was to ask God for signs (or indicators) that would help me realize when I was serving Man instead of Him.

— • —

The first sign is a constant need for approval from others. My joy in the day to day was entirely dependent on others recognizing the value of what I was doing and who I am as a person. But God alone should hold this place in our lives. Hebrews 12:2 states: “We look away from the natural realm and we fasten our gaze onto Jesus who birthed faith within us and who leads us forward into faith’s perfection” (TPT). Godly serving is fueled by faith, not by sight. It is driven by the approval of the Unseen, rather than those you can see.

The second sign is you are too ambitious to submit. Who had more potential on their life than Jesus? Yet He chose to submit to God’s design for Him, rather than getting caught up in the hopes and plans of those around Him. His people constantly wanted Him to storm the castle and set up a new kingdom. But Jesus’s aim was to do the will of His father. That’s why He could dismiss His disciples’ misguided ambitions. We see this in Mark 10:44 when James and John are jockeying for positions of power. Jesus tells them, “The path to promotion and prominence comes by having the heart of a bond-slave who serves everyone” (TPT). That’s certainly a countercultural form of ambition . . .

The third sign is you find yourself believing that God has forgotten about you. Watching other people run down the path of fulfilling their dreams was assurance that I was missing out. But here’s the truth: in the kingdom of God, we don’t share a pie—where if someone else gets a piece, it is taking away from our potential. As Sons and Daughters of the Most High WE ALL GET OUR OWN PIE!

“For God, the Faithful One, is not unfair. How can he forget the work you have done for him? He remembers the love you demonstrate as you continually serve his beloved ones for the glory of his name.” (Hebrews 6:10 TPT)

Serving God is not limited to a season or opportunity. This holy servanthood is a lifelong pursuit. We are all either serving God or Man. Friends, let’s break free from our selfie culture and view our lives as a gift to be poured out for others. In this place of genuine service, our talents, efforts, energy, and expertise will find new form and meaning.

I would love to hear from you about ways you keep your heart poised to serve God rather than Man.

 

15 Comments

  1. I think the term “truth bomb” is apt to describe this post. Thank you for the bluntness of illustrating how as Christians we can deceive ourselves of being “servants” when actually it is a focus on our own selves. As a person, who has struggled with looking for approval from man and not realising how my approach must be from God, you have certainly provided direct Godly truth.

  2. Jessica Beltran

    This is a good rest moment for me. My heart is ready to serve Jesus not man! Thank you for encouraging me.

    • Julianna Bevere

      Yes Jessica! It is the only worthy path. Looking to man for what only God can provide will never satisfy.

  3. Thank you ladies sooo much. When we know whose we are it’s easier to response from that place. It’s easier not get our feelings hurt. Sonship is a posture of the heart. The more we trust in him the more motivated I become to be more like him and serve. We don’t look for rewards here as much as rewards there. “For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.”
    ‭‭2 Corinthians‬ ‭4:17-18‬ ‭NIV‬‬

    • Julianna Bevere

      Excellent scripture reference to put words to that eternal perspective we are meant to persevere in. Thank you Micah!

  4. Shane Bekker

    The Approval Addiction is a trap – “I need to do things in order to feel good about myself” – we all fall into because we want to feel successful and make good progress in life. The very fact that God loves us and made us is approval in itself. We don’t have to try and get approval when we have been approved by Father God Himself. He had us in His mind before the foundation of the world, Psalm 139; Jeremiah 1:5. Searching for approval, as you said Julianna, can be so self-centered, and needs to be God centered daily. Thank you for reminding me of that. Another thing I have come across in the Word of God was, Jesus made Himself of no reputation – He didn’t seek approval – but He loved people. Philippians 2:7  “But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men:”. Try not having a reputation – it is hard to do – and see what happens. Humility is close to you when you do this. It is easy to do only when you let the Holy Spirit empower you. That way your servant-hood is in Christ. God bless you and Jess.

    • Julianna Bevere

      Thank you Shane, you are so right. It can be a daily struggle to not get swept up in the reputation game which is steeped in comparison and competition. The empowerment and guidance of Holy Spirit is vital.

  5. Sarra Herring

    Loved this. Amazing, actually. Thank you so much for this perspective. Saaaaame sometimes, hate to say it. But it’s real. And I love that light has been brought to this and practical steps on how to position our hearts.

    • Julianna Bevere

      Sarra Sarra Bo Barra,
      You are SO welcome, glad it spoke to you. Lately I’m needing to be reminded of this pretty much daily.

  6. This was really great to ruminate on again. What’s the version you’re using? Interesting translation.
    I think it’s staying close to him so that I know how secure I am already in our relationship and am not seeking for security from outside sources.
    And a desire to serve him because he’s so so good to me allows me to not desire recognition but be filled with gratitude that I’m able to be used to build up His body.

    • Julianna Bevere

      Yes Sessa!
      Total reliance upon the intimacy availible to each of us and allowing that to be an overwhelming source of gratitude on a daily basis is a tool we must utilize if we have any hope of bringing him glory. Amazing.

  7. Julianna Bevere

    Thanks Zac, it’s a journey worth traveling.

  8. So good!!!

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