Word of the Year 2019: Serve

Serve or service we hear it everywhere and we are often commanded to do it. And it’s usually easy to serve, but often it’s our hearts that get in the way. It’s easy to know that we should serve, but there’s a much deeper aspect that I want to focus on this year. And that’s the heart behind why we serve. Also not just the big things that we serve the church with, but the service of living that we do every second of our lives from how we talk to our spouses to how we smile at our local coffee shop barista.

It’s easy to go through the motions doing what you’ve always done without any thought to it. We go through our days on autopilot doing what we’ve always done in our daily routine. And often time the things we do in this routine are selfish. Our routine is often not things that are obviously selfish, but the little things that we do without any thought to others or how it might impact them. And to make things even more difficult this routine of selfish actions are promoted in today’s society. We hear the slogan “pour into yourself” all over the place, promoting the need for centering yourself and taking time for yourself every day.

The world tells us that we can’t pour into others if our cup is empty, but I truly believe that the Bible tells us a different story. For we are not our source of strength. Our source of strength is from our everlasting God. “He who believes in Me, as the Scriptures said, ‘From his innermost being will flow rivers of living water.” 1

Because of the Holy Spirit living in us, which is the living water in this verse, we will never run dry; our cup will never be empty if we are relying on our heavenly father.

So this year I want to focus on relying on my heavenly father for my strength to serve. Because without His strength I would run dry, I wouldn’t be able to do what He has commanded in His word.

And I also want to focus on my reason for serving. I want to focus on the reason why I cook dinner, or clean the house, or help an old lady cross the street. Because my motivation for these actions is just as important if not more important than the actions themselves.

I worked at Gallup for 6 months in high school and for those of you who don’t know, Gallup is an over the phone survey company and who do a lot of different surveys. And when I worked there I would call certain people who used a certain bank and would ask them questions that would, in the end, help them to have a better banking experience. Many people who I called would be very negative and incredibly rude, but since it was my job I would still try to serve them as best I could. But did I actually care if a stranger in California has a better banking experience? Not really, but it was my job so I forced it.

Our service shouldn’t be forced.  Our service must come from a heart love for our God. For “we love because He first loved us.”  2

We only serve well when we have a heart of humbleness. And that only comes by seeing people as Jesus sees them.

I’m excited to go on this journey with you all this year and I can’t wait to grow more and more with you. Let me know in the comments below what word you’re focusing on this year!

Serving for the King

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  1. John 7:38
  2. 1 John 4:19