“So then men ought to regard us as servants of Christ…”
1 Corinthians 4:1
Many times when I come in for music rehearsal, I enter the Worship Center and my ears are filled with loud worship songs. Its not the band up front rehearsing or the sound tech testing the speakers, its one of our team members as he vacuums the carpet. He plugs in his iPhone to the sound system and jams away. Its something that he does every week not to get paid, or for recognition, but simply because he saw a need and wanted to serve. He’s not alone, either. There are many people at The River Church who joyfully serve behind the scenes in many seemingly unnoticed positions so that people who come to our church can be ministered to effectively. As a part of a music team, where our gifts we offer to God are upfront and noticed, we can be easily pulled into the trap of wanting to stand out. Its the battle of being the one serving versus the one wanting to be served. Such a close play on words yet such a powerful difference in the meaning. One points the glory to God, the other takes the glory for him or herself. As a music team member, I must constantly check my heart. Why do I do what I do on Sundays? Is it to be discovered? For affirmation? For attention?
One of the ways to keep our motives pure is to find ways to serve behind the scenes as well. Just like the team member who vacuums, we can all find ways to help out. Perhaps you have time to devote a few hours to cleaning around your church, volunteering to play or sing for the kids ministry or mowing the lawn. For those of you who do not have a large chunk of time, even doing things like picking up garbage when you notice it or helping to put away the equipment we use can make a big difference in how you view your ministry.
Serving outside of the church is also a great way to keep a servant’s heart. This past Sunday our church participated in an movement called X Days 2013. We all met up in our prospective church buildings for about 30 minutes then we LEFT THE BUILDING and went out into the community. Some teams went to paint homes, repair steps and fences, others to refresh landscaping or break up concrete. The churches combined into teams, went out and served. The team my family and I were a part of volunteered to work at an elementary school. There were teens pulling weeds, husbands and wives trimming bushes, and young children sweeping or helping their parents paint. We weren’t individuals, we were a team. It was an incredible event to take part in.
If God has placed you in a public form of serving, its your duty to make sure you are doing it with the right heart. We need to be humbled by the honor it is to be entrusted with the task of leading those in the congregation to worship. if you have a heart that wants to serve God, continue to grow in character and stretch yourself to serve in multiple areas- noticed or unnoticed. You might even get blessed along the way!