An essential mark of being a Christian is being a servant. If we understand that we are have been served by Jesus we will serve. Mark 10:45 makes it very clear: “For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and give his life as a ransom for many.”
Ephesians 4:11-13 talks about the church being given people who help equip the church to grow. It mentions people who play a particular role that is focused on bringing the Word to the church as the means of equipping the church to maturity and love.
1 Corinthians 12:7-13 also says every person in the church is a part of the body and has a part to play in the church growing to maturity.
There is a big difference between a restaurant and a family dinner. You go to a restaurant you sit down and people take care of everything. You can even complain about it. You can’t do that at family a dinner. You need to help set the table, clear the table and clean up. The difference between a restaurant and a family is that you do something.
Lakeshore Church is a family where you do something. You serve because you have been served by Jesus.
“Too often Western believers wander from church to church without really becoming committed to a body of believers. We tend to leave churches for consumeristic reasons, and often we only join a church if it can use our gifts. God calls on us to become part of the body and to live the believers who are part of the body. We don’t gather with other believers fundamentally to fulfill our gifts but to help others grow. So, we should be asking ourselves, “How can I serve others in the body of Christ? How can I encourage my brothers and sisters in the faith? How can I influence them to walk faithfully with the Lord?” (Thomas Schreiner)
Motivation for serving
- Flows from grace
- God-centered (Colossians 3:23-24)
- Others-focused (Galatians 5:13)
- Empowered by the Spirit (1 Peter 4:10-11)
- Characterized by humility (Philippians 2:3-4)
How do you work out how to serve?
Thinking though the three factors in the diagram above can help you work out how to serve. Ideally it is a coming together of all three factors that would determine where you would serve. There are some areas where you have certain skills as well as a passion for that area and if that is matched by a need in church then it makes it clear.
Often it is not as simple as that. You might have a skill in a certain area but there is no need for that skill. Or you might have a particular passion for something but you don’t have the necessary skills. Sometimes skills can be picked up or taught, especially if there is a need. Then again sometimes there is a need for a role or job to get done and even though there might not be any skills or passion for this, it has to be done. Who would ever say they have the skills and passion to empty the bin?
The way we express serving at Lakeshore is that we expect everyone to serve in the life and activities of Lakeshore Church. This includes serving in some way on Sunday to help make the Sunday gatherings work. These are the focus of our church life and if everyone doesn’t get in and help they will not happen. However there is more to church life than just our Sunday gatherings. There is life during the rest of the week, and we expect people to serve each other by living out the ‘one another’ commands.
The step to take to work out how to serve at Lakeshore is to speak to your Growth Group leader or one of the Pastors.