If you take following Jesus Christ seriously, you’re going to be forced to exert the courage to live life upside-down. Jesus was counter-cultural. He was a renegade. He had a different view of life. He said that the way up is down, the way to get is to give, and the way to be great is to serve. To be able to truly influence people at home, at work, in your career, wherever you are, you become a servant.
We’re told in the Scriptures to serve the Lord with gladness. Jesus said that whoever wants to be great must be a servant. In God’s way of life, anyone who wants to become a leader must become a servant. That’s true at work, for the people who work with or the people who work for you. A servant’s heart is what truly wins the day. When you serve, life becomes exactly what God intended because that’s what He’s made you and me to do. We know that, but sometimes we need to remember the reasons why we serve. This applies at home, at work, any environment, any team — football, basketball, baseball, soccer — any environment where you work with people, these reasons will work. Use them to inspire yourself, but use them to inspire your team as well. Here they are, Seven Reasons. To help you remember, we’ll use the word, REASONS as a memory device.
1. Serving RE-CENTERS my life. In other words, it brings me back to what’s important. I tend to drift. I tend to think that life is all about me. But the day you become convinced that life is not about you is the day you’ll be happy. The day you live outside yourself, focused on a hurt that you can heal, a wrong that you can right, or a dream that you can support is the day you’ll lose the obsession of your own petty worries and begin to live a larger life. It always re-centers your life.
2. I serve because it ENCOURAGES others. When people see you serving, when people see you going the extra mile, picking up trash, straightening up, staying late, getting to work on time, defending a co-worker, it encourages others to do the same. Oftentimes all we need is someone bold enough to step up and do the right thing, and it gives us the courage to do the same.
3. I serve because it’s A CURE for loneliness. The more you get outside yourself and get involved in missions and tasks worth doing, the more friends you’ll have, the more people will be attracted to you and the less lonely you’ll feel at the end of the day.
4. Serving SHARPENS my skills. God tells us that all of us have special abilities, but it’s only when we use them helping others that they really develop and take us to the next level. Some of you are stuck at the same level in your company simply because you’re waiting for someone to serve you. You’re becoming passive, stuck in self-doubt. Truth of the matter is, your skills sharpen as you use them in the act of service of other people. Then other people notice and that leads to number 5.
5. Serving OPENS up new possibilities. You see, the more you’re serving, the more you’re around other people. The more you’re helping other people, the more people begin to see you in action and recognize what your potential is. When they have a need, or promotion, or a new job, or a new idea, they automatically think of you because you’re the go-getter. You’re the “yes, can-do” person. You’re the one that’s serving. You’re the one that’s bowing. You’re the one who’s willing to lead by example. New opportunities and possibilities do not come to people who are passive, who whine, gripe, and moan about the way things are. They come to the ones who bow their knee to serve. Remember, we remember those who serve us.
6. Serving NEVER goes unrewarded. If you are a follower of Jesus Christ, you have one master donor. You serve before an audience of one. You recognize that if you work for the Lord, or work like the Lord, you can expect that your reward will come from the Lord. The Scriptures promise us that there is nothing that we ever do as an act of honor to another person that God doesn’t recognize and reward.
7. Serving shows I’m SERIOUS. At the end of the day, talk is cheap. It’s when you begin to serve people that they really understand that you’re a serious person, that you are a high-capacity leader. You can take more responsibility. You’re a thinker, you’re intelligent, and you’re smart enough to realize that living life upside-down is the way to really get ahead at the end of the day. You’ll be happy and a winner, and everyone else around you will be better for it.
As Mother Teresa said, “The fruit of faith is love, the fruit of love is service, and the fruit of service is peace.”