It’s all about relationship, not religion.
“Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves.” Philippians 2:3
Oh, my goodness. Last weekend I served with an incredible team from our church. Lakeside Christian Church has what they call “Go! Day” where we help local schools, with whatever they need, to get ready for the new school year. This is the first year I have participated and it was such a blessing!
We painted and we painted and we painted!!! One team was on the outside painting the world on the playground. I chose Central and South America in honor of my son-in-law who was raised in Costa Rica.
Others painted Alaska, which was a huge chore and almost used up all the purple paint! What a group of volunteers. I heard parents instructing their children as they worked side – by – side. I heard lively conversations around mission trips, children’s ministries and life in general. All in the increasingly hot August sun. So many smiles.
Once I finished my outside painting (and, actually, it just got too hot for this old lady), I went inside to see if I could help with the painting in there. The school officials had requested that we paint encouraging sayings on the bathroom walls. I went from room to room and everywhere inside was the same lively banter, the same fellowship, that was on the outside. So, I grabbed a cup of paint and a brush and headed to a bathroom! I found a saying that my daughter has in her house and started painting. The more I painted, the more I smiled. I could just imagine the little children coming in and feeling the Sparkle.
One of the workers came in and told me I was a rock star, man, that felt good! And I stopped what I was doing and thought about it for a minute. Why did that mean so much to me?
I’ve spent most of my life trying to prove my worth. (Long story about why, but that’s for another blog). I’ve never felt that I was a part of anything: my family, my church family, my work family. I felt that I had to set myself apart in order to be something. But I was never a “rock star.” What I have found over the past few months is that no one has to be set apart to be worthy, because God set us apart through His grace. We are all important to the body of Christ. When we work, we should work together. When we sing, we should sing together. When we pray, we should pray together.
I also learned that my trying to draw attention to my own attributes was against God’s will for me. Yes, He gives us gifts of talent in various ways. But these talents are not for personal gain or attention, but for others to see Christ in us. To see what Christ has done through His willing vessels. “Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit.” I never thought of myself as conceited, but now I see that I really was. I thank God for not “singling me out” as I asked Him to do. I thank God that He knew what avenue to take with me to prevent building self esteem and, instead, filling me with God esteem. To build Him up is why we have gifts. To build His kingdom and point others to Him.
Humility. Serving for the sake of others rather than self. What a great feeling. It’s like a breath of fresh air. Breathe in God; breathe out self. If I am going to be a “rock star’, I want it to be as a part of a “rock group” in serving Jesus. Yeah, I’ll take that any day.