A Heart to Serve

Photo by stevendepolo

Mark 10:44-45 44 And whoever of you desires to be first shall be slave of all. 45 For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many.”

Do you have a heart to serve? Are you willing to be a servant to all, to lead by example.

Are you willing to serve without fan-fair and accolades? Are you willing to serve for the sake of serving without thought of reward?

I’ve heard lots of messages in my time. There have been some truly great ones, and more than enough messages by people impressing themselves with their words.

I’m only asking these questions, because they are questions that we should be asking ourselves regularly, and attitudes or mind sets that are very difficult to live by.

If you’re a preacher, and you give what you felt was a powerful message, and not many seem impressed; does it make you feel bad? Can you walk away from that situation feeling good; like you did what you were supposed to, or would you walk away with your feelings hurt?

Being the imperfect person I am, I tend to feel a bit hurt and unappreciated.

But, is that how I should feel? If I put my heart into a message where I felt God was inspiring me, and no one seemed impressed, should I be offended?

It’s human nature to feel unappreciated in a situation like that, but it’s spiritual nature we should be developing.

Even Jesus wasn’t always appreciated for His messages and words to others. Look at Jesus after He had given several parables to a crowd.

Matthew 13:53-58 53 Now it came to pass, when Jesus had finished these parables, that He departed from there. 54 When He had come to His own country, He taught them in their synagogue, so that they were astonished and said, “Where did this Man get this wisdom and these mighty works? 55 Is this not the carpenter’s son? Is not His mother called Mary? And His brothers James, Joses,[a] Simon, and Judas? 56 And His sisters, are they not all with us? Where then did this Man get all these things?” 57 So they were offended at Him.

But Jesus said to them, “A prophet is not without honor except in his own country and in his own house.” 58 Now He did not do many mighty works there because of their unbelief.

Now, I’m not a profit, but I know there are times that I gave a message, or wrote something I felt was inspired by the Spirit to share; and the response was less than exciting. I felt unappreciated.

Should my feelings be hurt? If I’m doing what I feel called to do, should that not in itself be reward enough for me? I think it should.

What about you? Do you need a pat on the back every time you do what you’re called to do?

This isn’t just for those who preach or write. Any Christian that serves has to deal with these same issues. How about when you go way out of your way to help someone, and you barely get a thanks? You feel hurt, which is human nature. But are we serving for reward or are we serving because we have a heart to serve?

We all want and crave appreciation, but sometimes I think we need to look a little deeper; and realize even if others aren’t patting us on the back, God appreciates us. Every time you put yourself out there to serve; every time you give a message or write a post to edify God, He appreciates you.

We are human and will struggle with these kinds of issues while in this human state. But as we mature, we must learn to serve for the sake of serving without needing our egos stroked every time we open our mouths, put pen to paper or tickle the ivories.

I hope all who read this find it food for thought. But even if no one sends me emails, and comments telling me how brilliant this post was :), I will feel like I wrote what I was inspired to write.

I will also continue, with the help of God, to strive toward developing a true heart to serve.


  • floyd

    Well, I think the post was brilliant!

    Funny, I wrote a post a few weeks back about the subject and never posted it… It was a story that started with the quote from William Shakespeare, “No good deed goes unpunished.”

    Often we do things for others with the heart from God and we’re even despised for it, or envied and hated by the enemies of God. Human nature and the selfishness that is part of our fallen nature rears it’s ugly head often.

    But you’ve made a great point, it’s not about us… It’s all about Him… and when we have the proper perspective, we have peace and joy in Him regardless of what the world says… or doesn’t say.

    Excellent post, sister!

    • Thanks so much Floyd! And I’m glad you caught the sister part. 🙂 Isn’t it great that God can take the weaknesses in us and use them for examples to others. Selfishness and the need for acceptance is something I struggled with for years, and it still rears it’s ugly head on me from time to time. We need less focus on us and more on Him and His children.

  • floyd

    I mean brother! Sorry, my wife was just reminding me to go pick up something from my sister today… I should be better at multitasking by now…