OK let’s be honest – are there some people in your world you’d rather avoid? Maybe it’s the neighbor that loves to “humble brag”, the colleague that nitpicks at everything you do, or your spouse’s friend who grates on your every nerve each time he/she opens their mouth. You’re picturing that person right now, aren’t you? (I really hope it’s not me!) We all have people in our lives that are a struggle to be around and just rub us the wrong way.
I’ve been thinking about “those people” in the context of our theme for this school year “Christ-fit for Service” based on 1 Peter 4:10-11. Our theme focus for October is Christ-fit to serve everyone based on Mark 9:35: “And he sat down and called the twelve. And he said to them, “If anyone would be first, he must be last of all and servant of all.” We don’t get to pick and choose who we serve. Christ has prepared and equipped us to serve everyone. That’s a struggle for me sometimes because I’d vastly prefer to hang around with people who like me and care about me. But as we learn from Matthew 5:46-47: “For if you love those who love you, what reward do you have? And if you greet only your brothers, what more are you doing than others?” Thankfully Jesus chose to serve me not because of who I am but in spite of who I am – an annoying, weak, and messed up sinner totally in need of His love and sacrifice. I’m eternally grateful that Jesus didn’t avoid me – He embraced me. And now He calls you and me to serve everyone in His name and with His love.