Archive for the ‘Serving’ Category

November 1st, 2015

The Distraction of Serving

“But Martha was distracted with much serving. And she went up to him and said, ‘Lord, do you not care that my sister has left me to serve alone? Tell her then to help me.’ But the Lord answered her, ‘Martha, Martha, you are anxious and troubled about many things, but one thing is necessary. Mary has chosen the good portion, which will not be taken away from her.’” Luke 10:40-42 (ESV)

Serving should be the natural response of someone who has been transformed by the gospel of Jesus Christ. Jesus Himself came to serve and to build a Kingdom that was others focused, as explicitly expressed in the “Sermon on the Mount” and various other teachings of Jesus. There is a potential danger, however, in this proclivity toward service. If we are not careful, we can begin to fall back into our “pre-gospel” understandings of how we relate to God and once again subconsciously use service as a way to gain His favor. You see, we like activity and we like busyness, because both of these things make us feel like we are contributing to the product. But the gospel expressly states that you and I cannot help ourselves and that salvation and the maintenance of salvation are entirely an act of the Spirit of God, enabled by the sacrifice of Christ.

We must, then, be careful in the midst of our serving to remember the reason we serve. We do not serve to gain, we serve because of what we have already gained in Christ. Further, in light of that realization, we must remember to sit and worship this Christ, Who has given us so much! There is a time for service, yes, but there is also a time for meditation. We must have balance, a balance that only comes by a healthy understanding of grace as exemplified in the good news of Jesus.

Grace and peace,

Jared Richard
Mobilization Pastor (Online Devotional Guest Author)
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/jaredrichard

 

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Sunday, November 1st, 2015 at 1:00 am
Category Grace, Luke, Serving.
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June 13th, 2013

Personal Reward & Serving

“Behold, I am coming soon! My reward is with me, and I will give to everyone according to what he has done.” Revelation 22:12 (NIV)

What motivates you to serve? Do you serve for immediate recognition or eternal reward? Who is calculating your service? Jesus is the Rewarder! As you live to please Him and serve Him, Jesus rewards you personally both now and in the life to come. As Bruce Willkinson says, “Your belief determines where you spend eternity. Your behavior determines how you will spend eternity.” Jesus rewards your obedience in serving Him.

Enjoy Personal Reward for Giving:

  • “He who is kind to the poor lends to the LORD, and he will reward him for what he has done.” Prov. 19:17 (NIV)
  • “But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, so that your giving may be in secret. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.” Matt. 6:3-4 (NIV)

Enjoy Personal Reward for Praying:

  • “But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.” Matt. 6:6 (NIV)

Enjoy Personal Reward for Fasting:

  • “But when you fast, put oil on your head and wash your face, so that it will not be obvious to men that you are fasting, but only to your Father, who is unseen; and your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.” Matt. 6:17-18 (NIV)

Your life counts. Are you willing to allow Jesus to live in you and through you today in order to serve others? Your service to God will be rewarded by God.

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Thursday, June 13th, 2013 at 1:00 am
Category Obedience, Reward, Serving.
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June 12th, 2013

Organizational Stability & Serving

“But if serving the LORD seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your forefathers served beyond the River, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you are living. But as for me and my household, we will serve the LORD.” Joshua 24:15 (NIV)

Who are you serving? The answer to that question changes everything. Once you decide to serve the Lord, your life becomes intentional. You begin to live on purpose. In serving Jesus, you are drawn to connect with His family. Jesus is in charge!

  • “And God placed all things under his feet and appointed him to be head over everything for the church, which is his body, the fullness of him who fills everything in every way.” Eph. 1:22-23 (NIV)
  • “From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work.” Eph. 4:16 (NIV)

Stability flows from the Head, Jesus, down to the members of His Body, the church. The church is connected and held together by every supporting member. The design is for the church to grow and build itself up as each member does his or her part. Serving together as a team produces organizational stability.

The local church is an organism that God grows as we serve. Stability is the byproduct of a church family serving together in unity. Unity produces stability.

Does that describe the church you are connected to? Are you soaking or serving? Are you a spectator or a participator? Are you a consumer or a contributor? Commit to protect the unity of the church you are connected to. Pray for unity.

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Wednesday, June 12th, 2013 at 1:00 am
Category Serving, Stability, Unity.
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June 11th, 2013

Practical Unity & Serving

“Some men came, bringing to him a paralytic, carried by four of them. Since they could not get him to Jesus because of the crowd, they made an opening in the roof above Jesus and, after digging through it, lowered the mat the paralyzed man was lying on. When Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralytic, Son, your sins are forgiven.’” Mark 2:3-5 (NIV)

Are you carrying your corner? What if one of the men decided not to carry his corner? Would the paralytic have made it to Jesus and received healing? Jesus saw their faith and healed the paralytic. Each man was carrying his corner.

When you serve through the ministry of the local church with others, God produces the practical unity to fulfill His plan. God honors the unified body of believers who are committed to being on mission with Him.

Unity is a mark of spiritual maturity. Jesus exemplified unity in His relationship with our Heavenly Father and with His disciples. In His priestly prayer, Jesus prayed that we would demonstrate that same unity. “I have given them the glory that you gave me, that they may be one as we are one: I in them and you in me. May they be brought to complete unity to let the world know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me” (John 17:22-23 NIV).

Have you been brought to complete unity with the local expression of the Body of Christ, His Church? Is there anyone that you need to make things right with? Don’t hesitate to do the right thing in order to honor God and to bring unity to His Body. Do whatever it takes to ensure unity. Serving the one who offended you will produce practical unity.

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Tuesday, June 11th, 2013 at 1:00 am
Category Serving, Spiritual Maturity, Unity.
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June 10th, 2013

Numerical Growth & Serving

“For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.” Matthew 25:35-36 (NIV)

As you grow you serve and as you serve you grow. In the midst of your serving, God brings others into the equation. He will bring people into your path to give you an opportunity to serve them and to meet their needs. At other times, God will bring people into your life to help meet your needs.

Keep investing in the lives of others. Continue to shine His light and share His love through serving. God will add to our number. Serving produces numerical increase. God will draw people to know His love as you serve sacrificially.

  • “Those who accepted his message were baptized, and about three thousand were added to their number that day.” Acts 2:41 (NIV)
  • “…And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved.” Acts 2:47 (NIV)

Serving puts feet to your prayer life. Serving gives evidence to a watching world that you are living to benefit others. When you give your life away through selfless service, God multiplies your impact. You become a channel of God’s blessing as you build bridges to people in need.

Remember, you are never more like Jesus than when you are serving. As you live out the Christ-centered life in a self-absorbed world, God will use you to bring others into the Kingdom. That’s right! Heaven’s population is multiplied by your faithfulness in serving the Living God.

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Monday, June 10th, 2013 at 1:00 am
Category Growth, Ministry, Prayer, Serving.
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June 9th, 2013

Spiritual Growth & Serving

“Then will I purify the lips of the peoples, that all of them may call on the name of the LORD and serve him shoulder to shoulder.” Zephaniah 3:9 (NIV)

Serving produces spiritual growth. As you serve God by serving others you develop spiritual muscles. Spiritual growth produces serving and serving produces spiritual growth. God does not want you to stay where you are in your spiritual development. God wants you to grow spiritually and to demonstrate that spiritual growth through serving.

Serving involves placing the needs of others before your own. To be other-centered is to follow the example of Jesus and to give evidence of spiritual growth.”Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves. Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others” (Phil. 2:3-4 NIV). Serving is a process of allowing the life of Christ to be realized through your life to others.

Selfishness is an indication of spiritual immaturity. Selflessness is an indication of spiritual maturity. What will you model today, selfishness or selflessness? Will you diligently serve others today or persistently seek to be served by others?

Spend a few moments right now expressing your availability to God for His use. Allow Him to have His way in your life today. Even when you don’t feel like serving others, faith it until you feel it. As you serve others, the love of Christ will flow through you like a river.

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Sunday, June 9th, 2013 at 1:00 am
Category Selflessness, Serving, Spiritual Growth.
Interact No Comments
November 1st, 2012

The Distraction of Serving

“But Martha was distracted with much serving. And she went up to him and said, ‘Lord, do you not care that my sister has left me to serve alone? Tell her then to help me.’ But the Lord answered her, ‘Martha, Martha, you are anxious and troubled about many things, but one thing is necessary. Mary has chosen the good portion, which will not be taken away from her.’” Luke 10:40-42 (ESV)

Serving should be the natural response of someone who has been transformed by the gospel of Jesus Christ. Jesus Himself came to serve and to build a Kingdom that was others focused, as explicitly expressed in the “Sermon on the Mount” and various other teachings of Jesus. There is a potential danger, however, in this proclivity toward service. If we are not careful, we can begin to fall back into our “pre-gospel” understandings of how we relate to God and once again subconsciously use service as a way to gain His favor. You see, we like activity and we like busyness, because both of these things make us feel like we are contributing to the product. But the gospel expressly states that you and I cannot help ourselves and that salvation and the maintenance of salvation are entirely an act of the Spirit of God, enabled by the sacrifice of Christ.

We must, then, be careful in the midst of our serving to remember the reason we serve. We do not serve to gain, we serve because of what we have already gained in Christ. Further, in light of that realization, we must remember to sit and worship this Christ, Who has given us so much! There is a time for service, yes, but there is also a time for meditation. We must have balance, a balance that only comes by a healthy understanding of grace as exemplified in the good news of Jesus.

Chronological Bible Reading Plan: (Day 298:  Luke 10)

Grace and peace,

Jared Richard
Associate Pastor (Online Devotional Guest Author)
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/jaredrichard

 

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Thursday, November 1st, 2012 at 1:00 am
Category Grace, Luke, Serving.
Interact No Comments
June 13th, 2011

Personal Reward & Serving

“Behold, I am coming soon! My reward is with me, and I will give to everyone according to what he has done.” Rev 22:12 (NIV)

What motivates you to serve? Do you serve for immediate recognition or eternal reward? Who is calculating your service? Jesus is the Rewarder! As you live to please Him and serve Him, Jesus rewards you personally both now and in the life to come. As Bruce Willkinson says, “Your belief determines where you spend eternity. Your behavior determines how you will spend eternity.” Jesus rewards your obedience in serving Him.

Enjoy Personal Reward for Giving:

  • “He who is kind to the poor lends to the LORD, and he will reward him for what he has done.” Prov 19:17 (NIV)
  • “But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, so that your giving may be in secret. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.” Matt 6:3-4 (NIV)

Enjoy Personal Reward for Praying:

  • “But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.” Matt 6:6 (NIV)

Enjoy Personal Reward for Fasting:

  • “But when you fast, put oil on your head and wash your face, so that it will not be obvious to men that you are fasting, but only to your Father, who is unseen; and your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.” Matt 6:17-18 (NIV)

Your life counts. Are you willing to allow Jesus to live in you and through you today in order to serve others? Your service to God will be rewarded by God.

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Executive Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Monday, June 13th, 2011 at 1:00 am
Category Obedience, Reward, Serving.
Interact No Comments
June 12th, 2011

Organizational Stability & Serving

“But if serving the LORD seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your forefathers served beyond the River, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you are living. But as for me and my household, we will serve the LORD.” Josh 24:15 (NIV)

Who are you serving? The answer to that question changes everything. Once you decide to serve the Lord, your life becomes intentional. You begin to live on purpose. In serving Jesus, you are drawn to connect with His family. Jesus is in charge!

  • “And God placed all things under his feet and appointed him to be head over everything for the church, which is his body, the fullness of him who fills everything in every way.” Eph 1:22-23 (NIV)
  • “From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work.” Eph 4:16 (NIV)

Stability flows from the Head, Jesus, down to the members of His Body, the church. The church is connected and held together by every supporting member. The design is for the church to grow and build itself up as each member does his or her part. Serving together as a team produces organizational stability.

The local church is an organism that God grows as we serve. Stability is the byproduct of a church family serving together in unity. Unity produces stability.

Does that describe the church you are connected to? Are you soaking or serving? Are you a spectator or a participator? Are you a consumer or a contributor? Commit to protect the unity of the church you are connected to. Pray for unity.

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Executive Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Sunday, June 12th, 2011 at 1:00 am
Category Serving, Stability, Unity.
Interact No Comments
June 11th, 2011

Practical Unity & Serving

“Some men came, bringing to him a paralytic, carried by four of them. Since they could not get him to Jesus because of the crowd, they made an opening in the roof above Jesus and, after digging through it, lowered the mat the paralyzed man was lying on. When Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralytic, Son, your sins are forgiven.’” Mark 2:3-5 (NIV)

Are you carrying your corner? What if one of the men decided not to carry his corner? Would the paralytic have made it to Jesus and received healing? Jesus saw their faith and healed the paralytic. Each man was carrying his corner.

When you serve through the ministry of the local church with others, God produces the practical unity to fulfill His plan. God honors the unified body of believers who are committed to being on mission with Him.

Unity is a mark of spiritual maturity. Jesus exemplified unity in His relationship with our Heavenly Father and with His disciples. In His priestly prayer, Jesus prayed that we would demonstrate that same unity. “I have given them the glory that you gave me, that they may be one as we are one: I in them and you in me. May they be brought to complete unity to let the world know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me” (John 17:22-23 NIV).

Have you been brought to complete unity with the local expression of the Body of Christ, His Church? Is there anyone that you need to make things right with? Don’t hesitate to do the right thing in order to honor God and to bring unity to His Body. Do whatever it takes to ensure unity. Serving the one who offended you will produce practical unity.

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Executive Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Saturday, June 11th, 2011 at 1:00 am
Category Serving, Spiritual Maturity, Unity.
Interact No Comments