HOW we serve

HOW we serve {STAND OUT: 7 traits of a counter cultural life — service}

Welcome to day 17 of STAND OUT: 7 traits of a counter cultural life. You can find an index of every post in this series here.

Sometimes when I’m writing about a topic, it’s from the overflow of what God has taught me and a desire to share those lessons with others. But sometimes, I find myself writing from my need. Today is the latter. Y’all, the three Underwoods are exhausted. The past six weeks have been nothing but hard. We’ve dealt with grief at the loss of beloved family members, sorrow over the health decline of our grandparents, fervent prayer about several difficult situations within our church family, and the ever-present chaos of having a beautiful daughter who is active in her high school.  Add to that the spiritual attack I’ve felt for the past month and a half, a lot of hormones {there’s two of us girls in this house, remember?}, and five of six weekends involving travel or entire days away from home … and what you have is a serious deficit in my sleep and enthusiasm for most anything.

Enter three days of writing about service.  Can I just tell you that today the three of us spent this morning preparing for an evangelistic production our church is doing next week and then left there early to go serve a free medical clinic for the uninsured with our area.  These are  both good things … but today, if I’m really honest, I just want to stay home and watch football {my Auburn Tigers won their game Thursday so I could  just watch without the stress today!} and eat chili and chocolate chip cookies.

HOW we serve {STAND OUT: 7 traits of a counter cultural life — service}

But here’s the thing … while these are not the plans I would have chosen for my day, they are the opportunities God has given me to use my gifts. I don’t have an acting role in this production but I’m able to encourage those who do and help them run lines and work on their presentation.  And while I’ve no medical expertise, I’m excellent at helping keep the flow of a volunteer-run clinic that sees over 50 patients in just a few hours going smoothly.

When we view our service as a gift, we recognize the ways we can honor God and minister to others and allow those to become our offering. Today, I have the opportunity to encourage and support those who are active in this production at our church {including my husband and my daughter}. I also have the privilege to be there to help Scott’s aunt who is the one who manages the free clinic.  I can take some of the administrative tasks off her plate and free her up to the things only she can do.

Sometimes service is as simple as doing the little things you can do that enable others to do the big things God has given them to do.

When we serve others, we must have the mindset of Jesus — a decision to lay down our rights and privilege for the sake of the Master, trusting in Him to provide for us. Counter cultural service places the interests of God and His kingdom above our own

It isn’t all that glamorous. It isn’t all that fun. But is good and it does matter.

In Philippians Paul writes about Jesus “taking the form of servant” {Philippians 2:7}. The Greek word used there is “doulos.”  My Hebrew-Greek Key Word Study Bible** {which I highly recommend as a resource!} explains the transliteration of this word:

Literally, one owned as the property of another, a servant whose rights and service have been obtained by his master … A slave possessed no rights; he lived in total dependence on his master for his necessary provisions … Figuratively one who places himself under the will or interests of another. (1613)

When we serve others, we must have the mindset of Jesus — a decision to lay down our rights and privilege for the sake of the Master, trusting in Him to provide for us. Counter cultural service places the interests of God and His kingdom above our own.

Counter cultural service places the interests of God and HIs kingdom above our own. #StandOut Click To Tweet

How we serve matters!

We serve through love.

For you were called to freedom, brothers, only do not use your freedom as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another. Galatians 5:13, emphasis added

We serve through freedom.

But now we are released from the law having died to that which held us captive, so that we serve in the new way of the Spirit and no in the old way of the written code.  Romans 7:6, emphasis added

So today, as I run lines and set out the food for lunch and welcome patients and review lab slips, I have a choice:

to serve through love and freedom … or to allow resentment and obligation control my words and actions.

The truth is, I have that same choice to make every day. And so you do!

So, how then will you serve?

xo,

Teri Lynne

In what ways have you experienced freedom as you humbly serve others?

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