Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Servant Life

“[W]e are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not despairing; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed; always carrying about in the body the dying of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our body” (2 Corinthians 4:8-10).

Answering God’s call doesn’t bring t...he promise of an easy life. The reason for this is because it is a call to surrender the life we once knew and take on the life of a servant. Now if that doesn’t seem hard, then maybe it is because we are not understanding what all is entailed in the life of a servant. Jesus proclaimed His life to be lived as a servant: “For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many” (Mark 10:45). Jesus’ life is proof that living as a servant is a life that is appreciated by few. And although the people He served did not accept His service, Jesus continued through faith in serving the will of God.

When Paul wrote about his experience as a servant of the word of God, he used some words that might bring fear to the heart of the common man. But giving up is just what God’s adversary wants us to do. He makes our walk upon this earth as difficult as he can. Paul says he causes us “affliction.” This word is used to describe the work of a winepress. We are being pressed and squeezed as satan tries to steal the victory that is found in the life God has poured into us. He uses the weakness of our flesh to convince us that this life is not for us. But God has delivered His Spirit to lead us through the difficult times and sustain our walk by assuring us of the treasure that will be rewarded to those who overcome (Revelation 17:14). We are not “crushed” because we believe Paul’s inspired statement that Satan’s pressure is “not worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us” (Romans 8:18). Satan cannot steal a servant’s heart.

The fact that Satan never gives up and his attack is brutal is made evident in the word “perplexed.” Satan tries to make us feel like we have been deserted. He tries to confuse us by making us think we can never win. The world is relentless as they continually turn to their own ways instead of turning to God. And if that is not enough, they go out of their way to make the servant’s lifestyle the object of their mockery. As we strive to remain faithful to the call of Christianity, we are not always blessed with the physical luxuries that the world who mocks us is enjoying and physical satisfaction can be used to confuse us. God’s way out of the perplexity in the life of a servant is through faith. We serve God in love and His love cannot fail (1 Corinthians 13:8) and we do not despair because we have faith that God will give us victory (2 Corinthians 5:7). And we live in hope that does not disappoint (Romans 5:5).

In summary, God’s servants are being put “through the mill” in an attempt to get us to give up. As you serve God in love, know His promise of life is being delivered in us as we walk this earth (John 10:10). Our steps are guided by our faith in His plan and His way is illuminated by truth. Do not let Satan’s invalid attempts to realign your focus be successful. Let your focus remain on God’s truth and not Satan’s lies. Let your heart be guided by God’s love and not Satan’s hate. Make it a habit to stay away from people who are not living according to the faith that assures us a place at His right hand (1 Corinthians 15:33). Satan is always going to persecute you as you are walking in faith. Keep focused on the life God offers by staying faithful to the call to being a servant of the Most High.

In His Love,
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