Serving with Joy

servingI have never recovered from it.  A real live example of what the Bible talks about in regards to serving one another. I had just become a Christian, and the youth group from the church was heading up to Algonquin Park in Ontario, Canada. What a gorgeous place it is! Wow! As we prepared to embark on our “Canoe Camp” for 5 days, our group prepared the food we would need.  One of the regulations in the Park is that bring in canned food is not permitted. Someone in our group thought up the idea of opening the canned food before we left for camp, putting the contents in plastic freezer bags and sealing the bag with a hot iron.  Not one person objected, no one said, “Will the plastic bags keep the food from spoiling?” Not a word.

As we began to canoe and eat our meals all was well for the first couple of days. But by the 3rd day the canned food was beginning to take its revenge on a couple of us in a very aggressive manner.  Man, we got sicker than a dog! If you have ever done wilderness camping you know that restroom facilities are not high on the camp’s priority list!  Fortunately for us there were outhouses.  I will spare you the gruesome details of the events that occurred in our bodies during those days. It was not pleasant to say the least.  As we lay in our tents after losing the canned food in very literal way, our dear youth pastor took it upon himself to be in charge of clean-up duty. Enough said.

He demonstrated to me what it means to be a servant.  I am sure that his act of service was not in the youth pastor job description. He acted out of love. He saw a need, did not ask questions and served.

The Apostle Paul wrote in Philippians 2:4, “Let each of you look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others.” The idea of being a servant is good, we judge, until it gets messy.  Paul writes that our service for others comes from the sacrificial love that Jesus Christ exhibited to us when he stepped out of the glories of heaven to the squalor of earth. He who was the King of creation became a humble servant who died a death he did not deserve.

Those who have experienced the sacrificial love of God through the death of Jesus on the cross are now under divine obligation to serve those who are in need of his love and compassion. The story of the Good Samaritan is a wonderful illustration of God’s loves in action, it is recorded in Luke 10:25-37, take some time to read it. The story pictures what true service and true compassion looks like.

Ultimately, we serve for God’s glory. We serve because he has so impacted our lives that we want others to see how much Jesus loves them. All of it is for God’s glory, we are only servants pointing others to Him.  I will never recover from how God loved me enough to send Jesus to serve me by dying for me. My youth pastor illustrated that love in a beautiful way. Today, I will serve Him with all of my heart, soul and mind, all for His glory!

1 Comment

  1. says:

    Hi Bill,

    I enjoyed reading this post because it brought back a lot of good memories of canoe camping with the youth of Central. I had forgotten about the “bad food” incident until you mentioned it.

    I am continuing to pray with you about your potential call to pastoring again. Any update?


    Sent wirelessly from my BlackBerry device on the Bell network.
    Envoyé sans fil par mon terminal mobile BlackBerry sur le réseau de Bell.


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