4 Attitudes that Hinder Service

This blog is a follow up to my message on the morning of March 20th at Orting Community Baptist Church.  That message, entitled “Next Steps: Serve”, can be found here!
 
Romans 12:1 – “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.”
 
Acquiring volunteers to serve in your church isn’t always the easiest thing to accomplish; in fact, it can quickly become frustrating and stressful.  Busyness and overloaded schedules add to the difficulties, but often the deciding factor when it comes to service stems from our heart condition.  
 
Proverbs 4:23 – “Keep thy heart with all diligence; For out of it are the issues of life.”
Luke 6:45b – “…for of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaketh.”
 
The following attitudes, and many others like them, ultimately stem from the condition of our hearts…
 
“I’ve put in my time.”
  • The person who expresses this is really just looking for a nice way to say…“I’ve done enough, I’ve paid my dues, it’s not my responsibility anymore.”  But when it comes to service to God, is there really a pinnacle that we will one day reach, stand on top of, and say “I’ve done enough!”.  Paul expressed something similar to this mindset, but only when it came time for Him to die, having spent his entire life, after his conversion, in service to God.  This attitude kills service.  This is the attitude that kills the nursery ministry.  This attitude will kill any ministry.  I’ll transition with this thought, if you walked up to Jesus and told Him, “I’ve put in my time.” what do you think He’d say?
 
“It really doesn’t matter whether I’m there or not.”
  • Yes, yes it does.  Once this attitude creeps in, it quickly leads to “It really doesn’t matter whether I go to church or not.”  The principles of the Bible clearly encourage more church attendance, not less.  You are important to God because of what He wants to accomplish through you.  He has a purpose for your life and it involves you serving Him with your life.  If you don’t come, then you’re not available, if you’re not available, then you certainly won’t find yourself accidentally serving God down the road.  Plus, we miss you when you’re not here!
 
“They already have enough people, they don’t need me.”
  • Yes, yes we do need you.  Serving God is not about quantity, it’s about quality.  It’s not about the amount of things you can do, it’s about doing what you can from the heart.  The Bible is clear in I Corinthians 12 that we can accomplish more when we work together as a functioning body of believers.  We need you because God wants to use you.  I don’t know if any ministry can have too many volunteers, and if it did, that would be an amazing problem to have!
 
“Someone else will do that/take care of that/accomplish that.” 
  • If this is your attitude, then you will soon find yourself asking this question, “Why hasn’t someone done that yet?”  If everyone possessed this mentality, then nothing would get done, nothing would move forward, and no one would take the next step in their spiritual growth.  Everyone would be waiting for everyone else to take the first step.  It’s clear from God’s Word that He wants us as individuals to be ‘doers’ of His Word.  Being a ‘doer’ of the Word involves us recognizing responsibility, and taking the initiative to accomplish the task.  Rather than having the mentality of “What can we (church) do about that?”, pray that God would help you to have this mindset, “What can I do about that?”
 
Let me ask you a question, do you serve God because you feel like you have to, or because you love Him?  If serving God was a requirement, then salvation would not be a free gift (Rom 6:23; Eph 2:8,).  Yes, Christ died on the cross for our sins, and rose from the grave the 3rd day, but He doesn’t point the finger at those who accept His free gift of salvation and say, “Okay, now you owe me one!”  Salvation is a free gift, no strings attached!!  But once you accept Christ, and you grow in your knowledge of who God is and what He’s done, the Holy Spirit will help you come to a full understanding of what God in the flesh did for you on the cross, and you can’t help but come to the realization found in Romans 12:1, which urges us to present our body back to God as a living sacrifice.  Being a living sacrifice is a lifelong endeavor.  If we’re serious about the mission (Matthew 28:18-20), then we won’t reach a certain point and think that we’ve done enough.  To become a true disciple of Jesus Christ, you must first enter through the gateway of supreme love for God (Luke 14:26).  That’s the foundation, loving God more than anything else, period.  Serving God out of obligation produces burn out, but serving Him out of love produces joy.  Loving God with all of our heart will overflow into service for Him.
 
Pastor Dale

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