If I said the word servant, what comes to mind? Do you think, “Man, having a servant sure would be nice.” Do you think of the TV shows like Hazel, The Brady Bunch, Family Affair, The Jetsons, or the Fresh Prince of Bel Air? Each of these series had maids or butlers – what we would call a servant. Is that what a servant is?
What does is mean to be a real servant? Jesus had some radical teaching regarding servants. He said things like, if you want to be great, you’ve got t be a good servant. (Matthew 20:26) He said the greatest people among you will be your servants. (Matthew 23:11) In Mark 9:35 Jesus said, “If anyone wants to be first, he shall be last of all and servant of all.” Jesus had a different way of looking at servants. The word for servant in the New Testament is the Greek word diakonos which you may be familiar with. It is translated as servant, deacon, and minister.
Now you get to the heart of what a servant really is. A true servant is one that wants to serve his master. The application is widespread. It can be applied to the marriage relationship, the parent child relationship, the employee employer relationship, and it can be applied in the church. A servant doesn’t question the master. The servant serves at the pleasure of the master. And that’s the rub isn’t it? I believe many people want to serve, but they want to serve under their own terms. That’s not being a servant. Do you want to make your husband be the best he can be? Do you want your wife to be the very best she can be? What about your children. Do you want them to be the best they can be? Do you want to make your boss look great? All of these questions can be answered in the light of servanthood.
Remember it was Jesus that said He came to serve. Even in the Garden of Gethsemane when things were looking really bad for the Son of God, He determined that it was better to serve the will of the Master. That’s real servanthood.
What about you. Are you willing to serve at the pleasure of your spouse, your employer, your pastor? Or are you willing to serve as long as it is on your terms?
We’re all servants in one way or another. Let’s serve like Jesus.