"For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many" (Mark 10:45).
Each generation seeks to give their children something they did not have. My grandparents gave my parents three meals a day, clothes on their backs and a roof over their head. This was a step up from the depression through which they lived and wondered where their next meal may come from.
My parents' generation gave us bikes to ride, video games to play, phones to talk on and televisions to watch. This was a step up from the radio they listened to and the games they made up in the neighborhood like kick the can or hide and seek. Now my generation has given the next generation maid service, abundance of food, money and computers (including $500 phones with unlimited data). Each generation since the early 1900s has prospered greatly and this is a sign of a growing nation that has been blessed in ways that many take for granted.
I celebrate these advancements and thank the Lord for them, but I have noticed something: We do not have the faith we used to have when we had less. We have become comfortable with divorce, homosexuality, sickness, rebellion and both blatant and subtle disrespect of authority of all kinds from police to parents. We have not disciplined, trained or equipped this generation for a life of service.
One thing that got passed down in my family line was a work ethic, whether we had a lot or a little, we always were taught that a work ethic is critical to success, so when I became a Christian, that did not change; that same attitude continued. Being a servant is part of having a work ethic, for when there is work to be done, you do not sit on the couch and wait to be served, you get up and find out what needs to be done. This is sadly lacking in our current culture and it is not the "kids/teenagers" fault, the adults are modeling this type of attitude and the "youth generation" is adopting what they see many adults doing.
"Beware that you do not forget the Lord your God by not keeping His commandments and His ordinances and His statutes which I am commanding you today; otherwise, when you have eaten and are satisfied, and have built good houses and lived in them, and when your herds and your flocks multiply, and your silver and gold multiply, and all that you have multiplies, then your heart will become proud and you will forget the Lord your God who brought you out from the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery" (Deut. 8:11-14).
My concern is we have forgotten who is serving who. We pray prayers that make it sound like God is serving us. Bless me, heal me, help me, prosper me, awaken me, pour out your Spirit on me—we pray for God to do things for us, as though He is serving us.
The challenge I see is a passionless church who is standing with their hands out waiting for God to come down and fix everything for us. While I was in worship today, the Lord showed me a butler. When we see a butler's suit, we know he is there to serve.
He stands at attention, waiting for the master, king or whomever he is serving to give him orders. He is there to serve the master; he is not waiting for the master to serve him. We are God's butlers, we are His waitresses, we are His servants; He is the King and we are the servants.
In a culture of abundance, in a church that loves to be the head and not the tail, we must be very careful for some have crossed the line of thinking they are the king and that God is their servant. This is dangerous territory, for in this place we can do whatever we want and still be convinced we will be blessed.
The Lord has extended extreme patience to Christians, but make no mistake about it, disobedience will be punished. 2 Thessalonians 1:9-10 says, "On that day—when the clouds draw back displaying His powerful heavenly messengers in a fiery blaze, Jesus the Lord will appear from heaven dealing out perfect justice to anyone who doesn't know God and anyone who disobeys the good news of our Lord Jesus. And what's to become of them? They'll pay for what they've done; their punishment will be eternal destruction. And what's worse? They'll be banished from the Lord's presence and glorious power."
We have entered a new season in the spirit, the shift from the last season to this one was quick, but we are in a new day and the warning lights are flashing, God is not here to serve us, we are here to serve Him, not out of fear of punishment, but out of love for Him. Our only job as believers is to obey.
Obedience is how we show love. Obedience is what servants do. Servants obey the orders of their King, their Master, their Lord. Disobedience brings distance between us and God. Many have lived in disobedience for so long they don't even recognize they are not in the presence of God, but when the shakeable mountain they are living on shakes, they will know that disobedience has brought separation. But thanks be to God, if we are judged on Earth, we still have time to repent, return and be restored back to a place of obedience.
Your butler suit is hanging on the hook in the Father's house right where you left it, and the only thing you need to do is repent, return and obey. Then we will see the restoration of wealth and health that is desired. We're serving Him; He is not serving us!
Lisa Great is an author, speaker and blogger with Mouthpiece Ministries International. She has been in ministry for over 25 years, she has a BA in Youth and Family Studies, a MA in Education. She can be reached at mouthpieceministries.net;
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