Serve wholeheartedly, as if you were serving the Lord, not men…

Serve wholeheartedly, as if you were serving the Lord, not men, because you know that the Lord will reward everyone for whatever good he does. Ephesians 6:7-8
Yesterday in the service we talked about how all members of the church are to be servants. God set it up this way, that all members serve God and others. God has even given us leaders in the church to help us grow in this way. We are given servants in the church who lead and in doing so breed other servants. But then many times we as servants stop serving as we should. Have you ever wondered why?
Why do Christians shrink away from serving others with zeal? Every time the Christian gives of himself in service and the recipient still isn’t satisfied or when He serves faithfully and one time drops the ball then receives criticism, his spirit withers a bit more. We wonder, “Why bother?” The ingratitude is harsh and only the bad is magnified.
The issue is to clarify why we serve, not whimper over ingratitude from whom we serve. Our motive must be to please God, not men. The key is the personal relationship with Christ. The focus must not be on serving others or on being served. The focus must be on Jesus, on becoming so absorbed in the relationship with Him that every other thing is a response to our relationship. We don’t serve men; we serve God. Have no expectations of men. Focus on the personal relationship with Him, and there will be an overflow available for others.
Look to Christ alone for gratitude. If you serve Christ, then you will remember to look to Him for your approval, not to the applause of human sympathy. He will reward you for serving others; in fact, He is the reward. When someone feels you let them down, you can surrender that relationship to Christ. You are serving Him only; He will give you the strength to serve that same person more. You may want to flee from the ingratitude but Christ will empower you to be a servant if you take on His attitude.
It can only come by devotion to the personal relationship. The personal relationship with Christ is the restoring power for our relations with others. When people begin to wear you down, let it remind you that you are not in the overflow. It is time to go back to the well of Christ. Are you beat down because your service has not been appreciated? Go to Him and be filled to overflow. Then you can serve with gratitude. Your expectations will be supernaturally provided and your reward will be growth in the relationship with Christ.
In His Service,
Eric Barnes