Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Fervant Servant Introduction

Welcome to Fervent Servant, my attempt to encourage in the Blogosphere. I've actually given a lot of thought to the idea of keeping a blog and I finally decided to go for it. What sort of commitment is this? Well, I hope to write when I have something to say. My hope is that it might be cathartic and encouraging at the same time.

I chose the name "Fervent Servant" because that is what I want to be. I considered all sorts of other titles for my blog, but many seemed either wholly self-righteous, juvenile, or just plain silly. And so, I landed on "Fervent Servant." Why? Because I've tried for so long to be all sorts of things to all people, and over the last year God has shown me that I just need to be a servant. Period. And it just clicked. I don't need to be anything but a servant. Why did it take me so long to figure out that my attempts to be anything other than what God wills for me to be, always end utterly, unmistakably, in defeat?

You're going to think I'm crazy, but I believe there is nothing more liberating than resolving to be a servant. That's right. I said it. Serving sets us free. Free from worry. Free from stress and free from the need to be in control. A servant is never in charge and he does not aspire to be. Nor does a servant have to be perfect. He (or she) needs only commit to serving.

Ok, so I want to be a servant. But what kind of servant? Bear with me for one minute. Let's consider some famous servants from t.v. land. Truth be told, I watch a lot of tv. Note to self: "Watch less t.v. and spend more time serving."

Anyway, remember Lerch from the Addams Family? He was the freakishly frankenstein-like, Eeyore-esque, servant to Gomez and Morticia Addams and the rest of the "mysteriously kooky" Addams clan. If they needed him, they rang a bell, and he was there in a creepy, consistent, heartbeat with a bassy "You Rang?" It was obvious Lerch was ready to serve, but he wasn't real excited about it.

Now, remember Florence Johnston from the Jeffersons? I know I'm giving away my age. Anyway, remember Florence, the devout "church going maid"? She was perky at times but generally sassy and negative, and copiously lazy. Florence didn't understand her position. She was employed to serve, but her heart wasn't in it. She could keep herself busily engrossed in the affairs of others, but she never accomplished anything.

Then there was also Rosie the literal Robot from the space-age cartoon The Jetsons, articulate, snazzily-dressed Geoffrey from Fresh Prince, and lastly who could forget Alfred, Bruce Wayne's faithful butler (or Larry Boy's depending on your generation). All ok, but all flawed.

All of these TV legend servants had great qualities: consistent, perky, articulate, faithful. All of these are qualities a servant might possess. A good one anyway. I don't know about you, but I don't wanna be a "Lerch," I want to serve in an excited, passionate, downright ecstatic way. I hope I never brag about going to church the way Florence did while spreading negativity or worse accomplish zilch while I spread my negativity. I want to accomplish something while I serve. I want to be a "Fervent Servant."

All of these examples are Employer-Employee servant situations and I certainly don't mean to imply that those are the only examples of servant hood. There are many circumstances and ways to which we are all called to serve faithfully. But in each of these cases these characters were serving their employers and remember I mentioned that Florence didn't remember her place?

I want to be reminded daily of my place. The best way I can be reminded of my place, is to take myself out of the equation and serve others. My boss. My family. My friends. A stranger.

I want to be a "Fervent Servant" who knows his place. I want to serve at the feet of Jesus. I want to forget about me. I want to remember what He's done for me.

Remember what he's done for you? Don't you want to serve him fervently?

"For the Son of Man came not to be served, but to serve and to give his life a ransom for many." Matt. 20:28.

If pouring himself out for us was good enough for the Savior. Shouldn't we pour ourselves out for Him? And by the way, shouldn't we excel as we serve? Shouldn't we all want to be fervent servants for Jesus?

Have you ever noticed how we greet each other? "Hello, how are you?" "I'm fine and yourself?" "Oh I'm fine." Pretty boring. Pretty easy. A few days ago I began to try something new. Each time a server in a restaurant or a cashier says "How are you?" I have resolved to take a minute, "I'm great. God's been good to me. Has he been good to you?" Try it sometime. The responses are amazing. For the most part, people are speechless for a moment. Inevitably, their minds wander off for a moment as they are immediately reminded of some blessing. And inevitably, they always come back and say, "Yes. Yes He has, and I'm good."

I'm going to bed now. Goodnight and thanks for reading.