Serving Christ by serving others
“ Ye have heard that it hath been said, An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth: But I say unto you, That ye resist not evil: but whosoever shall smite thee on thy right cheek, turn to him the other also. And if any man will sue thee at the law, and take away thy coat, let him have thy cloak also. And whosoever shall compel thee to go a mile, go with him twain. Give to him that asketh thee, and from him that would borrow of thee turn not thou away.”
– Matthew 5: 38 – 42
As a child, I always found it easy to remember things by using acrostics, where each letter of a word represents the first letter of another word that relates to, or describes the initial word. One of my earliest memories as a child of a church service was one where the minister told us how we could have real joy by using an acrostic. He took each letter of the short word and assigned the following words to them:
J – Jesus
O – Others
Y – Yourself
In order to have real joy in your life you had to have these three things in that order, Jesus first, others second, and lastly ourselves. Something that has really challenged me in recent weeks is my ability, or even willingness to put others before myself, to put off my selfish attitude and to serve others as Christ would. In our main text today, Christ taught his disciples and those who were gathered with them to ‘go the extra mile’, as we would say today, to help others and give to those who ask for our help. That doesn’t mean that we have to set out each day with the aim of performing an extraordinary act for everyone we meet. It can be as simple as holding a door for someone, offering to do a job for someone who can’t find time to do it themselves, even complimenting and encouraging people who you are with throughout the day.
In the parable of the sheep and the goats in Matthew 25, Jesus taught of how those who had helped those who were in need had done it unto the Father. Although it is not good works which get you into Heaven, but redemption in Christ alone, it can be seen that in our everyday lives, when we help those around us, and go that extra mile, we honour the Father, we can witness through our actions, even when we don’t have the opportunity to share the Good News verbally.
To conclude, can I ask if you have real joy in your life? Primarily by the acceptance of salvation through Jesus Christ, and secondly by living to put Jesus and then others before yourself each day? Pray today for God’s help in striving to help others in your circumstances! – G