As we think of St. Valentine’s Day, let’s consider what it means to have a servant’s, heart. I’m sure you’ll enjoy this guest post from my friend, Bishop Ronald Wilson.
What on Earth would cause God to even consider clothing Himself in the flesh so that He could truly be touched with the feelings of our infirmities? Not only did Jesus condescend to the level of humanity, but He chose to become a servant to the creature He had created. “For even the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give His life a ransom for many” (Mark 10:45). Perhaps the magnitude of this truth should cause us to reevaluate our priorities in this fast paced and often self-centered world of the twenty-first century.
The message coming from far too many Christians today revolves around whom they claim to be and their rights. I am not discounting who God has made us to be through Christ Jesus, but many people seem to have too much of their focus in the wrong direction. We often hear people say, “it’s not about me, it’s about Him,” but is it really? The heart of a true servant never looks to his own advantage, but to how he can better help others, even if the fulfillment of that mission brings some discomfort into his own life.
Quite frankly, I cannot fathom the depths of God’s love that would cause His only begotten Son to come into this world on a death mission. I have tried to grasp that Garden of Eden promise in my own mind and I have tried to express that to others in over forty years of ministry, but I must confess I have never fully understood how or why. To remove Himself from the splendors of Heaven and to be born in a stable is the greatest love story the world will ever hear. The world should have been bowing at His feet, but He came to humble Himself and to be submissive to earthly humiliation and shame.
In John chapter 15, Jesus carries His concept of servanthood to another level. He tells us that He doesn’t look upon us as servants, but as His friend, and that the greatest love a man can have is when he is willing to lay down his life for a friend. That is exactly what brought Jesus into this world. He was born to die that you and I might live. He gave His
life as a ransom for many.
During the final week of every year, families from all over the world gather in their homes and at their churches to celebrate God’s great gift to us all, wrapped not in ornate paper but in swaddling clothes. And here in mid-February, we celebrate Valentine’s Day, another day of love but one whose current focus is more on earthly expressions. Somehow we need to bring the two closer together, not as far as the calendar goes, but with respect to how we daily love God and how we treat our fellow man. The highest form of worship we can express to God is in the giving of ourselves to a world that Jesus loved enough to die for. As friends of God, we become servants just as He did to ensure as many people as possible will spend eternity in the glorious home we call Heaven.
Also in John 15, Jesus talks about bearing fruit that will remain. Among the many possible ways of looking at this, I suggest we concentrate more on relationships which last than on mere numbers that may cause our conversion statistics to temporarily look good. The heart of a servant will go the extra mile, doing all within their power to ensure that those who begin this race will finish this race.
I’ll end with this word of encouragement. As you travel the pathway of life, “Tell somebody about Jesus!” Who knows? You may be the chosen servant of God at a strategic and critical moment in someone’s life that will change that person for eternity.