Saturday, December 12, 2015

Give Yourself Away

Read Mark 10:35-45

"For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many.”  Mark 10:45

Every year on the second Saturday of December, our church hosts a free gift wrapping event at a local Walmart. We set up a huge tent, bring tables and provide gift wrapping for anyone who wants it. We don't charge and won't take any money for it, and peope often find that strange and difficult to comprehend. In addition, we set up a prayer tent right there in the parking lot and we have teams available to pray for anyone who would like prayer.

Inside the store, we set up shop in the employee break room and fill (and refill ) two 6' tables full of homemade treats, snacks and goodies for the employees. We fill almost every ice chest we own with sodas and bottled water, and we leave it throughout he entire time we're at the store wrapping presents. This particular Walmart looks forward to us coming every year, and we've been doing this for over 15 years! 

When I go into the store each summer to get our date down on their store calendar, they always say, "Oh, yes! You're with the church? Just tell us when!"

It takes more than just a handful of people to pull this off. In fact, each year, we need roughly 60 - 70 people serving in some capacity for this event. We somehow manage to recruit that many, year after year, but then we have some very servant-hearted people in our congregation.

We do this each year as a gift to our community. We love serving and blessing others, and this is just one way we get to demonstrate that love.

I was a servant before I was a leader and I serve now more than I lead. For some of us it comes naturally. Yet for all of us as believers, it is part of or spiritual DNA which we inherited once we were grafetd into the family of God.

Jesus is the best example of a selfless servant.  In his own words, he says he came to serve, not to be served. Yet how often do we hold back our offerings of service while we wait for others to volunteer and take the lead? I believe the most compassionate and humble people I know are servants first and foremost.

What if we all looked for ways to serve and to give ourselves away this Christmas, instead of holding back? Wouldn't that feel more like true Christmas spirit? Wouldn't we look just a little more like Jesus if we were caught in the act of serving? I think just maybe so.