When we serve others, something really cool happens. Something small, yet significant. Something that you don’t expect and really don’t get anywhere else. It’s a small glow inside that sparks love… only it’s a different kind of love than the world is used to. It’s not romantic, it’s not selfish, and it doesn’t have strings attached, it’s not even the familia type love; it’s deeper than that. It’s the kind of love that takes your breath away just by thinking about it and realizing all that it has accomplished. It’s the eternal love that can only come from Christ. It is different than any other kind of love because while we possess it, it’s not something we grow ourselves. It’s something we’ve been given and are to give freely. It’s nothing we can selfishly hold onto, as if it’s our decision on who gets it. It is supposed to run wild and free as we interact with those around us; and the best way to unlock it? To serve others and let it flow.
Think about which brings more joy and peace: doing the things you want to do or serving others selflessly? Our first response might be “doing the things you want to do!” But what if we could see the impact of serving others, all the tendrils that stretch out when we serve? I think we’d be rushing to do it far more often, not seeing it as an obligation but a joy. A joy multiplied at that! You see, our serving others never impacts just one person. It reaches far beyond our imagination and proves again and again just how amazing the love of Christ is.
You may think you’re blessing a single individual when you’ve served them in some way, but consider Psalm 119: 90,
“Your faithfulness endures to all generations; you have established the earth and it stands fast.”
And Psalm 102:18,
“Let this be recorded for a generation to come, so that a people yet to be created may praise the Lord.” (emphasis mine)
Christ’s love doesn’t just affect our generation, but generations yet to be created! When I think about that verse, one particular person is brought to mind: my mom’s Granny. This woman impacted generations by serving others around her. Most importantly for me, she impacted my mother and set an amazing example of how to live for Christ. She’s one of those people that I look forward to meeting someday in heaven. I could tell you so many stories about her that have been told to me by mom… and I can’t wait to share those stories with the next generation, just like the verse Psalms said. Because the fact is, my mom has had an amazing opportunity to share Christ’s love to continue that impact forward because of the example Granny set for her.
Most of you have heard about and may even be praying for my Great-Aunt Becky who is dealing with lung cancer, but some of you may not know about my mother’s involvement with it. My Aunt Becky isn’t related to us by blood. She married into the family and has no kids. When her husband died, she moved back to ABQ to be closer to us and her friends here. With the new diagnosis of cancer just this year, my mom stepped up to help with driving, prepping food, etc. When my aunt hit a low point in health and energy, my mom pretty much moved in with her to be able to help her with daily living.
I got to witness all this first hand and yes, it impacted me. More importantly, it impacted my aunt. Just two weeks ago she accepted Christ as her Savior! It was an incredibly joyous day for us, and we’re still praising God for His goodness through the pain. My mom continues serving and while my Aunt Becky may have been the recipient of this serving, it also made an impression on her friends, neighbors, and old coworkers who saw a woman, unrelated by blood, step in to help and serve selflessly. I’m praying that the impact of that reaches their hearts, too, that they may also know this amazing love both inside and out.
So how are we jumping in and serving this year? What might 2020 look like for you? How are our prayers, lives and examples impacting the generations to come? When we give of ourselves and die to self, it’s a beautiful picture of what Christ did for us. All the more reason to jump into it joyfully and with the awe inspiring humility of feeling that incredible love flow through us to others.