In preparation for this writing, I read various definitions of the words serve, joy, partner, and others. But even taken together, the dictionary definitions did not do justice to the joy of serving the Lord that comes by way of serving the individuals whose paths God intersects with our own in this world. Those intersections serve God’s good purpose, providing us with opportunities to extend the provision that is ours in Christ Jesus to others. Only through extension is partnership realized, generating greater unity in Christ here and now that, in itself, produces joy in serving.
The ability that we receive through Holy Spirit empowerment to more fully extend ourselves in service, beyond our natural inclinations to do so, is a gift from God that dissipates isolation. In realizing more fully the Gift that we have been given in Christ, our hearts and minds are changed to more fully embrace others as Christ embraces us. Our reaching out to give of ourselves through faith in God is used by God to strengthen the bonds of fellowship in Christ that magnify salvation’s joy.
The joy of serving that cannot be defined in entirety by worldly dictionaries is made clear in the life of Jesus: The joy of serving is the joy of loving. To serve is to love. Our serving is a reflection of the transformational work of God’s love in us. After salvation, what could be more joy producing than that?
By the grace of God, the joy of serving is my testimony, and it is yours.
[Written for Big Canoe Chapel’s weekly worship bulletin during pledge season]