Overview of the Practice of Service
The spiritual practice of service is all about doing it all for the glory of God. True servants look for ways to help others by just paying attention to what’s happening around them. Using cues from what they see and hear, they connect with God by serving others. They don’t do it for themselves – they do it for others, but along the way have the side-benefit of drawing closer to Jesus. True servants are people who take it to heart that they can work at anything and do it as praise to God.
The spiritual practice of service isn’t easy – being a servant is hard. It can be humiliating; it can feel strange; it can take you places you wouldn’t otherwise go. But, it’s also a vital part of a spiritual life.
While you might think of service as a list of things to do – but service is found more in the attitude you have when you do those things. The spiritual practice of service might start by you taking on a particular role, but grows as you seek humble and hidden ways to minister to others.
What Scripture says
Incorporate this practice into your life
Your first steps into the practice of service wi’ probably come slowly, something like offering to help a friend without expecting anything in return, cooking and doing the dishes so your spouse can rest, or making a one-day commitment to a volunteer project. As you grow in your expression of service, though, you might try to take a riskier step: commit to visit an elderly person every week (someone who is needy for companionship), sign up for a seemingly thankless task (and don’t do it expecting reward) or do something that seems outside your comfort zone and isn’t done to bring glory to yourself. Seek to do these acts for God, to express your love for Him.
Service is a spiritual practice — one you might exercise by being part of a serving team or volunteer role through your church, as we’.
How does this practice relate to what I’m facing?
- Service that brings Joy:
- Look for a way you can serve others that really brings you joy. We all have different things we’re passionate about, and different things that excite us. Consider what fires you up and look for ways to serve in that area. It might be as simple as doing something around the house, or you might consider some kind of community involvement. Whatever you choose, the spiritual practice of service can brings you great joy.
- Service when feeling angry or in conflict:
- Romans 12:17-21 quotes Proverbs — and talks about how we can serve even our enemies. Serving like this turns the tables in your mind; try it and see if your attitude changes.
- Service instead of laziness:
- If you’re feeling lazy, engaging in the spiritual practice of service may give you a chance to not just do something, but do something that’s really significant. Overcome the desire to just sit on the sofa by looking for ways to connect with God through serving your family, friends, or community.