A Servant’s Heart

1 Peter 4:10 “As each one has received a special gift, employ it in serving one another as good stewards of the manifold grace of God.”

h2h3The above verse is simply saying that we each have a special talent, or gift, so we must use it to the best of our ability, for good, to serve others to glorify God. First Peter 4:11 says, “… whoever serves is to do so as one who is serving by the strength which God supplies; so that in all things God may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom belongs the glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen” (emphasis mine). We all have a special, natural ability or capability for certain things. We might have several areas in which we do well. I love being with people of all ages and making them feel at ease. I love cooking and homemaking. When you put all of those together, you have the gift of hospitality! See how easy that is!

Find your talent

Perhaps we have a talent of painting––we could volunteer to do home improvement projects for the elderly, or volunteer for home remodeling at one of the neighborhood charity projects. We could paint crafts and give them as gifts to people. We can use our sewing talents for making things that nursing homes or children’s hospitals need.

We can serve by helping in many ways, such as babysitting free of charge if you love children, or you can read to someone in the nursing home if you love reading. We can rake leaves, plant or water flowers, take a meal to the sick, or write for a Christian magazine! There are all kinds of possible ways to serve and use your talents.

Use your talent

We need to make certain that we use the talents that God gives us. First Timothy 4:14 says, “Do not neglect the spiritual gift within you…” Even when we are young women, we are instructed to serve God by being a good example. First Timothy 4:12 tells us to “Let no one despise your youth, but be an example to the believers in word, in conduct, in love, in spirit, in faith, in purity.” There might be a younger girl who needs a mentor, and who better than you if you are living a godly example before them.

We are each unique and special and have so much to contribute when we take the time to do so. “Since we have gifts that differ according to the grace given to us, each of us is to exercise them accordingly…” (Romans 12:6). God wants us to use the abilities that He blessed us with. He placed us each where He wanted us, even if things seem difficult sometimes. We can grow stronger from our trials and perhaps use those circumstances to know how to help others in that same situation.

h2h5Ministering to people’s needs is another way to serve. Sometimes people just need someone to talk to, to cry with, or to laugh with. If you have the ability to talk to people easily, or are a great listener, or are compassionate, that would be a good ministry for you to do. Praying for others might be all we can do at times, so pray earnestly. Colossians 1:9 tells us, “For this reason, since the day we have heard of it, we have not ceased to pray for you and to ask that you may be filled with the knowledge of His will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding” (emphasis mine).

Being a good friend is also serving if you are setting a good example. Titus 2:7–8 says, “In all things show yourself to be an example of good deeds with purity in doctrine, dignified, sound in speech which is beyond reproach, so that the opponent will be put to shame, having nothing bad to say about us.”

Glorify God

We serve God in all we do if we glorify Him and do it to the best of our ability; not begrudgingly, but with cheer and joy. Jesus was the best servant of all. We see by His examples in the Bible that He was continually ministering to people, which means He attended to the wants and needs of others. In every example given, that is what Jesus did. He served and ministered to people’s needs. Matthew 4:23: “Jesus was going throughout all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues and proclaiming the gospel of the kingdom, and healing every kind of disease and every kind of sickness among the people.”

Jesus served without taking the credit for Himself. After Jesus cleansed the leper, He told those who witnessed it not to tell anyone (Matthew 8:4). We are also to serve without telling others what we do or bragging about it. We are told, in Matthew 6:3, “But when you give to the poor, do not let your right hand know what your left hand is doing.” If we are serving with the right heart, that of genuinely wanting to help others; then we won’t do it just to receive praise, but to glorify God. Whenever we serve the way God instructs us to serve then we will truly have joy in helping those in need.

By Carol Gartman

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