As Ricky put breakfast in front of us, he asked, “Anything else I can get you guys right now?”
We both told Ricky we were fine and thanked him. After he hurried away, I commented, “Ricky is a great example of someone who takes serving seriously. It’s not always easy to serve others.”
“You’re right,” Stan replied. “And earlier this morning I was looking at a story in the Bible that’s also a good example of someone who served. This time it was someone who was healed and then served.”
“Healed and then served? What was going on?”
“It’s the story of when Jesus went to the apostle Peter’s house and found that Peter’s mother-in-law was sick in bed.”
“So Peter was married,” I commented.
“Seems so,” Stan replied. “Unless there’s something I don’t understand, I think that’s how a person gets a mother-in law! But that’s not the important part of the story.”
“What is?” I asked.
“It’s what she did after Jesus healed her,” Stan said.
“What’d she do?”
“She got up and began to wait on Him,” Stan replied. “Seems to me it’s supposed to be the same for me, for you, and for everyone else.”
“In what way?”
“When I became a Christian by accepting God’s free and gracious gift of Jesus’ finished work on the cross, I was healed of my eternal separation from God. Because I accepted God’s provision of life eternally with Him, I was moved by the Holy Spirit to get up and to serve God while He keeps me on this side of eternity.”
“That sounds kind of like discipleship,” I commented.
“How so?” Stan asked.
“Well,” I replied, “the getting up to serve is like denying the self-centered notion of just wanting to serve myself. And then there’s the taking-up part, where serving God is doing what He has for me to take up. And, of course, there’s the third step of following Him after I have denied self and taken up what there is for me to take up.”
“Sounds about right,” Stan said. “As well, I think that’s what God intends for each person who is a part of His church. Once we have been healed from our eternal separation from God, we are to get up and serve Him as disciples.”
Bible verses to consider:
And when Jesus had come to Peter’s home, He saw his mother-in-law lying sick in bed with a fever. And He touched her hand, and the fever left her; and she arose, and began to wait on Him. Matthew 8:14-15.
And He was saying to them all, “If anyone wishes to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me. For whoever wishes to save his life shall lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake, he is the one who will save it.” Luke 9:23-24.
Prayer: Thank you, Father, for healing me of my separation from you when I accepted your free and gracious provision of the finished work of the cross. Thank you for healing me so that I have the opportunity to serve you. I confess that there are too many times when I don’t choose to serve you while you keep me on this side of eternity. Please forgive the foolishness of not serving you with the life you have given me. Help me follow every step of your lead so I do, in fact, serve you as a disciple however, wherever, and whenever you want. Thank you that I can and do bring these prayers before you in the name of Jesus. Amen.
Think on this: Have you accepted God’s free and gracious healing for eternal purposes so you know you will spend eternity in His presence? If no, why do you not want to be healed in that way? If you are a Christian with the assurance of salvation and redemption because by being healed of your eternal separation from God, how are you doing with serving Him on this side of eternity? As well as you would like? As well as He would like? If you sense the need for change in any of this, how is that going to happen? Is that what you want? Why or why not?