|Volume 25 Number 9 September 2023
I once heard it said that one of the most important abilities needed in the Lord’s church is availability. Seeing that God has given all of us different talents, and those talents have a place to be used in the kingdom, the issue isn’t if we can serve but whether we’re willing to serve. That God has a place of service for all of us is seen in Paul’s words in Ephesians 2:10. “For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them” (NKJV). It’s part of God’s eternal plan for us to serve. Our place in the kingdom should be one of obedience and of using our talents to His glory. “If anyone speaks, let him speak as the oracles of God. If anyone ministers, let him do it as with the ability which God supplies, that in all things God may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom belong the glory and the dominion forever and ever. Amen” (1 Peter 4:11).
We remember those in Scripture who gladly wanted to be active in serving God. Understanding the glory of God, Isaiah eagerly accepted God’s invitation to serve (Isaiah 6:8). Matthew freely gave up being a tax collector to become a disciple of Jesus (Luke 5:27-28). John recorded that we will serve God in eternity (Revelation 7:15). Of course, even our Lord humbled Himself to serve God on our behalf for our salvation (Mark 10:45). One can’t leave the pages of Scripture without understanding God wants us to be active in His kingdom.
There are many places of service available in the Lord’s church. Teachers are needed in Bible classes; Bible correspondence courses, prison ministries as well as encouraging individuals we know personally with the Word of God are just a few of the opportunities of Christian service available to Christians. There are sick people who need to know that their brothers and sisters care for them. There are those spiritually weak who need to be strengthened. Financial contributions are needed to fund many good works, as well as to support others working to spread the Gospel here and abroad. There’s something we all can do to reach out to the lost with the Gospel and to support each other to abide in salvation (James 5:19-20).
So, how available are you for Christian service? God wants us to serve, gives us abilities to use in serving and has a place for each of us to serve in His kingdom. If so many people of faith throughout Scripture willingly served, and even Christ humbled Himself to serve, what about you? Paul penned, “For you, brethren, have been called to liberty; only do not use liberty as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another” (Galatians 5:13). The grace and the mercy of our Lord should be an encouragement to do our best for Him, not an excuse to exempt ourselves from service. We died to ourselves when we obeyed the Gospel, or did we? We seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, or do we? We let nothing come between us and God, or have we? Are we standing on the promises or just sitting on the premises?
Jesus said, “If you love me, you will keep my commandments” (John 14:15 ESV). If we only do what we want to do, have we really obeyed Him? Do we genuinely love Jesus? If so, be available and serve with the talents and the strength God supplies! His blessings will be yours, now and eternally. “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven” (Matthew 7:21 NKJV).