Throughout the course of his entire life, Jesus was always serving those around him. Whether he was teaching the people, washing his disciples’ feet, working miracles of healing, or willfully laying down his life on the cross, Jesus was constantly showing that he became a man and came to this world not to be served by others, but to serve others (Mark 10:45). This life of service should be the model upon which we Christians base our own lives. Follow Christ’s perfect example of service to us by serving others (John 13:15). By doing this, we serve God.
This service to others is not limited to certain places or people. On the contrary, the word of God makes it quite clear that Christians are called to serve all men. Paul tells the churches of Galatia, “As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith” (Gal. 6:10). Paul did not tell the Christians of Galatia to do good to all men, except for the unbelievers who persecuted them. He didn’t tell the Christian Gentiles to do good to the other Christian Gentiles, but not to Jewish Christians, like Peter, who were prejudiced against them. The command was simple: do good to everyone, unbelievers, and especially, believers. The opportunities to do this good are everywhere.
Each young person reading this lives in the world, surrounded by unbelievers. They are our neighbors, coworkers, college classmates, and even the people driving next to us in traffic. What is your attitude toward them? Do you view them as less than you and thus pay them little attention? Do you think that they are worthy of your time and attention? Or do you view them as someone with whom you can share the gospel and to whom you can show the love of God? Your attitude toward them directs your actions toward them. Do you seek to do good to them? Could the unbeliever next door tell that you are a Christian by your actions toward him?
While we are surrounded by unbelievers on all sides, we are also part of the church, and our lives are intertwined with our Christian brothers and sisters. God has created each one of his children with his own unique talents and abilities to use in the service of the church. God has also created many opportunities for these talents to be used in the church. Are you using the talents that God has given you in his service and in the service of his people? The way that you do this doesn’t have to be a huge commitment or take up all of your time. You may decide to teach Sunday school, clean up the yard of an elderly saint or single mother, visit a shut-in, help your church plan a convention, or even write an article for the Beacon Lights. Use your gifts in the service of the one who gave them to you.
Originally published January 2020, Vol. 79 No. 1