Servanthood

So, we had this Leader’s Training with a group of girls from Bright Lights. And one whole session was about being a servant. And I was convicted by this session–you know, back when Hannah and I did the training almost six years ago. I told the girls how God has made a lot of progress with me in the servant-hood department since the last time I heard it.

And then, I was convicted again. There is, apparently, still quite a lot to be desired. (Though this really isn’t surprising at all.)

A few days ago, I was thinking about Things In General Especially My Life. Here’s the condensed, bloggy version:

My life hasn’t exactly gone how I thought it should. By this time I was supposed to be at least courting/dating/whateveryouwanttocallit, maybe even married. I was supposed to be in some sort of important type ministry, maybe overseas. I was supposed to know what I was going to Do With My Life.

And I’m not. Not courting, not married, not in an “important” ministry (by the world’s standards. Or even by the Good Christian Girl standards. I mean I haven’t even been out of the US yet on a short term mission trip!!), and I don’t know what I’m going to Do With My Life.

How depressing.

Or is it?

I kept thinking/praying, trying to sort out what I am doing, what my role is at home, at work, at church, in life. And I finally figured it out. Only took twenty three years…

I’m a servant.

No, a bondservant. For life. Out of choice. Because of Love.

First to Jesus, then to my family, then to the Bright Lights girls, then to my church family, then to… everyone else.

It isn’t even MY life to decide what to do with!

And the past few days, I’ve been consciously, purposefully embracing that role.  Now I keep having this odd thought going through my mind: “Being a servant is the most freeing thing you can do.”

Sounds so contradictory, so insane. Serving others makes you free?? Say what?

Oh, but it does, when your Master is Christ. His burden is indeed light. See, we will have a master. Either we are controlled by our own sinful passions and lusts, or we are controlled by Christ.

Here is the testimony of one who lived a life controlled by his passions, when he was caught and sentenced to prison: “I forgot that what a man does in secret will someday be shouted from the housetop–passion is a cruel master.”

What, then, of Christ? What sort of Master is He? He is a Good Father, the sort that will spank and hug, remove splinters and listen patiently, assign chores and times of rest. What does He desire and work in us? Our holiness. And guess what that leads to? Our good. And guess what that leads to? Joy and happiness of the purest kind.

When you cheerfully accept your role as a servant (And what other role can we take, especially since HE took it upon Himself?), everything changes. When you don’t have your own agenda to look out for, suddenly you don’t mind so much when you’re asked to do a project that will take up many hours of your day and involve a lot of dust and strenuous labor. Suddenly it’s expected, even welcomed. Suddenly it’s not such a big deal when people don’t notice all the things you do. It doesn’t hurt quite so much when you’re corrected. It’s not a problem if you’re behind the scenes where no one knows but you and your Master. Playing with and talking to your little brothers doesn’t seem like a distraction from the Import Ministry (not even kidding, both of my smallish little brothers [I also have a big little brother.] have come over with various things, one a broken car and one an AOE question, while I was writing this sentence.)–it becomes an act of service, a part of your assignment.

Because He sees, and He is pleased, and what more could you ask for?

And if what He wants is for me to stay right here, in this little house with these wonderful people that make up my family, serving in the “little” ministries He has given me for the rest of my daysthen so be it.

I’m not in charge. He is. And He is an AWFUL LOT SMARTER THAN ME. (like, way more than just caps, but I think you get the picture.)

I’m a bondservant and my Master is Good.

And getting that straight has been the sweetest, most freeing realization I’ve had in a long, long time. Maybe my whole life.

Here’s to many more years of joyful servanthood.

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