I’m excited for several reasons. It’s always exciting to be going to the word of God and bring it to you. This is actually the first time that I’m preaching before the Doctor Joseph Babij. Usually when I preach, I’m filling in for him when he’s not here, but this time, I actually get to preach in front of him. This is something that I might be talking about in ten or twenty years from now. Let’s go to the Lord in prayer:
Father God, we want to thank You for this time we get to open up Your scripture. We thank You, God, that You’ve given us Your word, and that You’ve given us Your Holy Spirit that we can come to Your word, read it, and understand it. We don’t just see it as a piece of literature, but we know it’s You revealing Yourself to us. We know, God, the more that we see Christ, the more that we know Christ, the more that we can grow, and the more that we are Sanctified. I pray that You be with us now. Help us to see Christ, help me to get out of the way, and make Christ glorified. We ask this in the name of Jesus and for His sake. Amen.
Last week, we went through this text and our focus was on this conversation between Jesus and Peter, and we looked at some of the spiritual truths there. It went from a conversation about washing feet to a conversation about sanctification. We looked at how Peter went from not understanding to understanding so well that he then writes about sanctification as a major subject of his first epistle. This week, I want us to look at what Jesus said in John 13:15:
For I gave you an example that you also should do as I did to you.
I want us to look at what Christ did at this example and how we can live this out today. Jesus left this as an example for us, so it’s something for us to study, something for us to follow, and something for us to strive after.
Also, I mentioned that there was a division that happened right at the beginning of John 13. In the first twelve chapters, Jesus is presented to and rejected by the nation of Israel. In the next five chapters, it all highlights one night with His intimate time with His disciples. Some call it the upper room discourse because it happened in the upper room. In these five chapters, it ends with Jesus praying to the Father on behalf of His disciples, which is focused on this one night.
In John 2, Jesus is introduced at a wedding, and we get to see the miracle-working Savior where He turned water into wine at a wedding. From John 2 through John 12, we get to see about three and a half years of the public Ministry of Jesus, but we can go back a little further. If we look at John 1:14, it tells us:
And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us…
From John 1:14 to John 13, we get thirty-three years of Jesus’ life. Then, we get five chapters of one night that He spends with His disciples. If we go back even further to John 1:1, we are told:
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
Technically, from John 1:1 to the end of John 12, we get everything from eternity past to the night before He was crucified. Twelve chapters to cover everything from before this world was created to the night before He was crucified. Then, we get five chapters on one night, so it makes sense to spend a lot of time here.
Now, I’m not trying to compete with Pastor Babij and preach for six hours. I don’t know how much you guys would stand that, and I will never be up here again, but we do want to take a look at this example that He gave us. John 13:1 says:
Now before the Feast of the Passover…
This is the night where He celebrates His Passover meal, which we now call the last supper. We use this as a model for the celebration of the Lord’s table. Then, John also says in John 13:1:
Jesus knowing that His hour had come that He would depart out of this world to the Father…
He knew that this was the end. He came into this world, He lived the life of righteousness and perfect obedience to the law, and this was the final step where He would give His life. In less than twelve hours from this point, He will be on the Cross. John 13:2 says:
During supper, the devil having already put into the heart of Judas Iscariot, the son of Simon, to betray Him
Jesus was going to be betrayed this night. It wasn’t just that He was going to be arrested, but one of His closest disciples betrays Him. In fact, so close that we’re told he was given the responsibility to handle the money. He was the treasurer for the disciples. He wasn’t just one of the guys hanging on the outskirts. He was a treasure. He was the one they trusted with the money.
So, Jesus knows all these things are going on, and He takes the time to wash the disciple’s feet. When we look at what Jesus did in this time, there are at least ten distinct ways that Jesus served. First, we are told in John 13:1:
having loved His own who were in the world, He loved them to the end.
Now, “to the end” isn’t speaking of the duration of His life, but it is speaking to the extent of His love. He loved them to the end. He loved them completely. He loved them perfectly. Meaning, His service was motivated by love, which is the first thing that we see. Before we get into all the details of all the ways which He serves, things that He did, and things that He ignored, we’re told that He loved His disciples perfectly. In John 13:34-35, Jesus says a new commandment:
“A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another. 35“By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.”
Love, for the body of Christ, is going to be the way that unbelievers, which are people who are not in the faith, know that we are Christians because of how we love each other, how we treat each other, how we respond to each other, and how we forgive each other.
The Bible, in the New Testament, is full of these phrases that have been termed, “The One Another’s.” They’re called that because the command is usually, “Go this to one another… Behave this way to one another…” If you just do a search for the phrase “one another,” you will see ten or more times this phrase, or similar, is used. Romans 15:14 tells us:
…to admonish one another.
Galatians 6:2 tells us:
Bear one another’s burdens
We are told in Ephesians 4:32
Be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving each other, just as God in Christ also has forgiven you.
Then, in Ephesians 5:21, we are told:
and be subject to one another in the fear of Christ.
Then, in 1 Thessalonians 4:18 says:
Therefore comfort one another with these words.
Then, 1 Thessalonians 5:13 says:
…Live in peace with one another.
Last week, we looked at James 5:16, which says:
Therefore, confess your sins to one another…
1 Peter 4:9 says:
Be hospitable to one another without complaint.
Those are just a few of the times that the Bible says that we are to do something to one another, and all those things are out-workings of our love. It’s the same love that Jesus said this is how the world will identify that you belong to Him. So, the first thing we see is Jesus’ service is motivated by love.
The second thing is that Jesus served in complete humility. John 13:4 says:
got up from supper and laid aside His garments; and taking a towel, He girded Himself.
The words and the image are that of complete humility. He just got up from the table and took off His outer garment, and then put a towel around His waist in complete humility. He didn’t even draw attention to Himself. The Bible doesn’t record Him saying or doing anything other than getting into a posture to serve.
Many times, it can be difficult for us to serve in complete humility because in this culture, we want to be seen, but not all of us. Some of us would like to hide in the background and never be seen. In fact, if we have the personality that says, “I want to kind of hide in the background,” then they will have people drag us out onto a stage and say, “No, you should want to be the focus of people’s attention.”
Constantly, we are told that, so it can be hard to serve. Later we will see that with service comes joy in human terms. You feel good when you serve someone, and even to talk about that service, they feel good. However, Jesus serves in humility, and we must do that as well.
Now, that may look different depending on the service that you do. It’s very difficult to serve with humility when there’s a hundred or a thousand eyes focused on you just by the nature of the service. You’re serving in humility may look different than someone who was doing something when no one’s around. However, you must make sure that is your motivation. That you are truly trying to serve to glorify God and the focus should be on Christ, not you.
Also, Jesus served quietly. He didn’t announce what He was doing. Matter of fact, the Bible doesn’t say that there were any words at all spoken until Peter objected. He didn’t point out who dropped the ball. He didn’t point out whose mistake He was trying to clean up.
In Luke 22:8-13, we see that Jesus tells the disciples to go and prepare for the Passover. He sends them ahead to get the upper room prepared. He tells them who to look for, which is a man who’s carrying water. Usually, that was done by a woman. So, they were going to see a man carrying water back from a well, and that was the person that Jesus already decided with to have the Passover in his home. They go they talk to this man and they set up the Passover, but they didn’t arrange to have anyone there to wash feet.
Now, that could have been an oversight. Obviously, if they did arrange for that, then we wouldn’t have this passage here or these lessons. However, Jesus doesn’t point it out by saying, “This was your mistake, and I’m going to clean up your mistake.” Many times, we do that.
In all walks of life, we have to identify the person who did something wrong, and while we’re doing something right, we have to tell the world, “Well, this person was supposed to send this email by two o’clock and they didn’t do it, so I had to go and send them.” Instead of just saying, “I sent the email. I took care of it.” We have to highlight that there was someone who didn’t do something they should have, and we had to put on our cape and save the day. In this case, it’s a towel.
However, Jesus didn’t do that. He serves with humility, but He also serves quietly without placing blame on one of the others that caused the need for the service in the first place. Jesus also served in the small ways. Last week, we talked about why foot-washing was necessary in the first place.
They walked on these dirty roads. Walking was their main mode of transportation, and the roads were very dirty and dusty. Even though they would clean their entire body, they would walk, and they would just kick up dust. By the time they got to the destination, their feet were dirty. Thus, a foot washer became a necessity so much so that it became a sign of hospitality. If you didn’t have someone or even you wash the feet of your guests, it was a dishonor to them.
Today, you can go to many people’s homes and they’ll offer to take your coat. Then, you usually offer something to drink as soon as someone comes in your home. I can’t think of someone’s house that I’ve been in where they didn’t offer a drink. Even if all they had was tap water, they offer a drink. It’s a basic thing where we are brought up to say, “Do you want something to drink?” For them, it was to get the dust off of their feet. For me, I would first say how they are going to be dragging that stuff on my carpet. However, it was a sign of hospitality.
In Luke 7:36-44, there is a story about a Pharisee, who invited Jesus into his home, and a woman comes and breaks an alabaster box that had costly perfume. Then, she pours out the perfume on His feet, cries on His feet, and she wipes His feet with her hair. She was a prostitute and the Pharisee starts thinking that if Jesus only knew what type of woman she was, then He wouldn’t let her touch Him at all. Then, Jesus condemns him by first telling a parable explaining that she loves Him more because she was forgiven of more. Then, He says:
I walked into your house and you didn’t even offer Me water for My feet. You’re trying to condemn this woman and you didn’t do the most basic thing to Me as your guest. Supposedly, I was your guest of honor.
It was such a basic part of their lives. So, Jesus didn’t just serve in big ways, but also served in the minor details. Sometimes, we have to look at the small ways to serve someone. We can’t always look for the large things. We can’t always look for the things that make us need to put the cape on. Giving somebody a ride is serving them, so don’t just say:
No, I’ll wait until they need a teacher before I will serve… I will wait before they need something large… I’ll wait for when they need someone to sing a solo, then I’ll step up and I’ll serve.
Serving the small ways, the everyday things that are usually not done, we see this is what Jesus Does. Jesus saw need and He immediately worked to fill it. He didn’t sit and deliberate. They didn’t have a conversation about it and say:
Who has to wash the feet? I don’t know who should do it. Do you want to do it? Maybe…Okay, fine. I’ll go and do it because nobody wants to.
Jesus saw the need, and He immediately went to fill the need. Some of His disciples probably didn’t even know what was going on because they’re involved in their conversations. Then, they wondered what Jesus was doing with a towel. He saw the need and immediately went to fill it, and it didn’t matter if the service matched His gifting or His experience.
Many times, we don’t want to serve because we say that we don’t have experience in that area, or that it’s not our calling, gifting, or where our ministry lies. We can get really deep, can’t we? We can put together the most spiritual sounding excuses.
Probably, some of us are still praying about something that we were asked to do ten years ago. We have to pray to see if that’s exactly what the Lord has for us in this season of our life. Meanwhile, God is calling for us to serve. Now, the sixth point is that Jesus served even when discouraged to do so. In John 13:6, Peter says:
So He came to Simon Peter. He said to Him, “Lord, do You wash my feet?”
In this dialogue, between Jesus and Peter, we’re going to see three things that people usually do to our service to discourage our service and how Jesus responds in each case. First, people will sometimes question our service. Sometimes they would just ask: are we really intending to do this? Sometimes, the question is about our motives. Sometimes, it’s about our qualifications.
Now in this world, we do have to be careful about people’s motives. We don’t always encounter people who have our best interest at heart, so when somebody wants to do something good, we’ve trained ourselves to question it:
Why are you trying to serve me in this way? No, I’m good. I don’t need that. I don’t trust them. I don’t know really what they’re trying to get out of it. Do they just want to have something they can hold over me? Do they just want to get my business, so they can go run their mouth to people?
These questions come, so people will question your service when you intend to do good. Jesus addresses Peters question in John 13:7:
Jesus answered and said to him, “What I do you do not realize now, but you will understand hereafter.”
Last week, we looked at Jesus’s qualifications to be able to make this type of statement, and to be able to ask Peter to have faith in Him. To ask Peter to move forward even through doubts. Jesus was qualified to ask this. Now, there are some types of service that can be done by everyone. In this case, we see that when Peter asked the question, where the emphasis is in the original pronouns, “do you wash my feet?” He couldn’t believe it.
Sometimes, people ask that because they don’t believe we’re even capable of doing whatever the service is. Sometimes, they are right. There are some types of service where you want someone to specialize in it. For instance, I don’t want everybody trying to tell me something medical. We have a doctor, several nurses, and some scientists in here, maybe I’ll talk to them before I talk to somebody who can’t even name two bones or two muscle groups.
There are certain things that you need to be qualified to help. When we ask for people to serve with our children, they have to complete a background check, not everyone can just walk in and serve our children. There must be some qualifications there.
However, there are other things that anyone can do. If you have a car, you can give a ride. If you have a day when you have free time in your schedule, you can give it to serve someone. There are basic things we can do. We can visit people who are sick. We can do basic things to serve each other.
In 1 Corinthians 12, Paul uses the analogy of the physical body to talk about the Body of Christ, and it got me thinking about times like when I have an itch. I just need to scratch it. Typically, we scratch with our fingernails, but if you don’t have nails, you can use your knuckles since they scratch pretty good too. Maybe I can even use the button on my shirt.
The point is that the itch is something so basic that there are many different parts of the body that can be used to address it. However, if I want to grab a bowling ball and roll it down the lane, well that’s pretty specific. Thus, some people will question our qualifications, and at times where the question is valid, we can’t get offended.
If I’m an ankle bone in the body of Christ, I have no business trying to push a bowling ball down a lane, but maybe I can do other things to serve. What we see here, in these questions, is that there are times where we should keep moving forward in the service, and there are times were the questions actually calls us to say, “Maybe I shouldn’t be serving in this area right now,” which is OK.
Sometimes, we have a need, and we need somebody to just jump in and serve. You might not even be good at it, but what you can do is better than not having anyone in the position at all. Sometimes, just having someone there when you are hurting is better than being all alone even if that person isn’t a wordsmith, even if that person isn’t a professionally trained counsellor. It is better to have them than to have no one.
It takes wisdom and discernment to know times when we should push forward in service and other times where we are not qualified in this area, and it’s OK. Because God has different parts to our bodies that serve differently. One of the main points, in 1 Corinthians 12 of the analogy with the human body, is that every part of the body is equally important, but they may not all be as visible.
We see Jesus has a response when His service is questioned, but some people won’t just question your service. Some people will refuse your service. John 13:8 says:
Peter said to Him, “Never shall You wash my feet!”
Emphatically, I don’t care what You say, I don’t care that You just told me that I’m not going to understand it now and understand it later, You will never wash my feet, Jesus! I can just picture Jesus has the foot in His hand, and Peter just snatches it away and says:
Get your hand off my foot. You’re never washing my foot. This is the job of a slave and you are my Lord. We should be washing Your feet.
Some people may refuse your service. Jesus responded in John 13:8:
Jesus answered him, “If I do not wash you, you have no part with Me.”
Last week, we looked at what that meant in detail and at the spiritual implications of those statements. Here, we see that Jesus is explaining to Peter the consequences of the refusal. There are many times it seems counter-intuitive that somebody would refuse service when they’re in need, but it happens so often.
Often times, it happens with money. For instance, somebody gets out of work, especially if a husband can no longer provide financially because he lost a job. It is so difficult to get many men to accept help when they’re in that situation. They refuse it, and for us, when we can, we need to respond the way Jesus did and explain the consequences of the refusal:
Listen, you may be six days behind on your mortgage right now, but if you don’t accept this help, you can be six months behind, and you and your family are going to be out on the street. Then, you’re going in a position where so many people have to come alongside you to help you to get you back on your feet. You can just accept the help now.
Sometimes, the service doesn’t have to be that deep and people will still refuse the service. Pride stands up in us and it will not let us be in a humble position to allow someone else to serve.
However, if we’re serving quietly without blame, if we’re serving with humility, if we’re serving motivated with love, then many times those walls breakdown and the refusals will turn into acceptance. Many times, explaining the consequences when done humbly can help someone see the foolishness of them refusing the service. We see that in John 13:9 where Peter has a change of heart, and he wants to accept Jesus’ service because he understands what it really means to refuse it.
This leads me to my third thing that people will do with your service. Sometimes, they will question your service. Other times, they will refuse your service. Then, you have others who will abuse your service. Jesus offered to wash Peters feet, and what does he do? Now, he wants a day at the spa. John 13:9 says:
Simon Peter said to Him, “Lord, then wash not only my feet, but also my hands and my head.”
You’ve got the basin right there! You might as well take care of some other parts too while you are at it, Jesus. Some people will try to abuse our service, so how does Jesus handle this? Jesus explains the adequacy of the service offered. Jesus said to him in John 13:10:
Jesus said to him, “He who has bathed needs only to wash his feet, but is completely clean; and you are clean, but not all of you.”
You don’t need me to wash your hands. You don’t need me to wash your head. You already have been cleansed. Last week, we looked at what that meant, which is of salvation and sanctification. Here, look at it in the natural sense. Jesus gave him an offer and it seems so outlandish to accept that help and service from Jesus.
First, he questioned Him. Then, he said:
No, you’ll never do that. Even though you told me it’s for my benefit and I will understand it later. No.
He questioned it, he refused it, and now he wants to abuse it. Now, he wants more than what was offered, and Jesus said, “No, here’s what you need.” I was talking to a friend recently who talked about loaning another friend money and not getting paid back, but seeing this person take lavish vacations and buying expensive clothing.
Meanwhile, my friend is struggling, has five children, is working a job that doesn’t pay her enough to support two of them, and keeps asking to get paid back. When she asks to get paid back, the response is no, but then they go to Cancun the next week. So, some people abuse your service.
Now, this person wasn’t a Christian, so her response was a little different than what I hope our response would be when someone does something like that. However, understand that just because you want to serve, it doesn’t mean that everyone’s going to accept it. It doesn’t mean that everyone is going to be happy with you wanting to serve.
Thus, Jesus doesn’t allow the abuse or His service to be exploited. Jesus serves in a way that will best minister to Peter. Another thing we see is Jesus serves those who mistreated Him. John 13:21 says:
When Jesus had said this, He became troubled in spirit, and testified and said, “Truly, truly, I say to you, that one of you will betray Me.”
Then, we see in John 13:11:
For He knew the one who was betraying Him; for this reason He said, “Not all of you are clean.”
Jesus washed the feet of Judas. He served the one who mistreated Him and betrayed Him with a kiss as you move on through the Gospel. Jesus knew it at the time that He grabbed his feet and began to wash them. The language, which describes Him washing the feet, paints the picture of it being tender and thorough. He didn’t just splash some water on it, but He did it in the way to truly minister to the disciples including Judas.
We are called to serve people even the ones who we feel mistreat us. Even the ones that we think we have a reason to hold a grudge against, we are called to serve them.
Of course, we are called to drop the grudge and to offer forgiveness. We are called to serve everyone in the body. We don’t get to pick and choose the ones that we like, the ones that talk like us, look like us, or have the same background as us. We are called to serve everyone. I heard a preacher, who preached on this and he said:
You know, I would have probably washed Judas feet myself.
I was a little shocked when I heard it because in my humanity, I don’t think I could have knowing what he was going to do. That would take a lot of prayer and fasting to be able to wash Judas feet. Then, this preacher went on to say:
but I would have made sure the water was scalding hot, dunked his feet right in there, and held them down.
Jesus did what seems impossible, but we’re in power to do the same. Those “one another’s” that we looked at earlier aren’t just little pretty ornaments in Scripture. It’s what we are commanded to do.
In fact, in the book of 1 John 3-4, we’re told that if we don’t express this type of love for our brother’s, then God is not in us. You can’t claim to love yet refuse to serve. Jesus served those who mistreated Him, and we must do the same. Jesus served regardless of rank or position. John 13:13 says:
“You call Me Teacher and Lord; and you are right, for so I am.”
There is no greater separation of rank or importance from Jesus to His disciples than any other relationship we see on earth. Many people call the president of the United States the president or the leader of the free world. If we consider that position or that office to be the most powerful on earth, then the gap of the most powerful ruler, leader, or king to the lowliest citizen of the lowliest nation is not compared to the gap between Jesus and His holiest disciple. Yet, Jesus still took the position of a servant, and that is what we must do.
It doesn’t matter title or position, rank, background, or culture. All that matters are if somebody belongs to Christ, we have to take the position of a servant to them. Yes, there are institutions that God has set up that has authority and submission. For instance, the church, the home, the government, and even the workplace, which is laid out in Ephesians 5-6.
What is so beautiful is that at the beginning of that section, we are told to submit to one another. We have to take the role of a servant whenever there is someone in need. We have to come humbly. Regardless of what our position is or what their position is, we have to be willing to serve. Jesus did it, and there was no one close to Him.
The King of kings the Lord of lords wrapped a towel around His waist and washed the feet of His disciples, which was the job of a slave on the most important night off His earthly existence. John 13:14-15 shows us how Jesus served as an example to others:
“If I then, the Lord and the Teacher, washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet. 15“For I gave you an example that you also should do as I did to you.
He didn’t just do this, leave them, and then have us come to a narrative in the Bible and try to make it applicable to everyone’s life. Jesus said this is how you serve. In Matthew 6, the disciple asks for the Lord to teach them to pray, and He told them to pray as such. Everything that we see about the service of Jesus should be what we strive for. Again, He says in John 13:14:
If I then, the Lord and the Teacher, washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet.
Right before they got here, they were arguing about who will be the greatest in the Kingdom. Once Jesus leaves, we need a new leader, so who’s going to take His place? Of course, none of them wanted to wash each other’s feet. None of them were going to say:
I’m going to take the position of a slave. I’m going to get on my knees in front of you and wash your feet while at the same time, I’m trying to say that I’m greater than you and I should be the one leading this group.
They were too busy jocking for a position to worry about serving one another, so Jesus had to show them the ultimate act of service on earth. A few hours later, He serves them the ultimate act of service throughout the cosmos. If you read the Epistles and the book of Acts, we realize they finally got the message.
These humble men, who are tripping over themselves, who ran from the garden when Jesus was arrested, and the only one who didn’t run was the one who took out a sword and chopped off someone’s ear, are the same guys who couldn’t seem to get it together. They were able to take the Gospel all over the known world at that time. They were able to do what Jesus said they would do.
We also have the same Holy Spirit in us and the same power that raised Christ from the dead. We can also do the things that Jesus commanded us to do. We can serve in the way that Jesus said we ought to serve. This isn’t just something that we see and say, “Awe, that was very nice. I’m glad we looked at that today, so what are you doing this afternoon?” This is something that impacts the way that we live our lives from here on out.
We don’t have an excuse. No matter how badly I preach this, no matter how much I trip over this, you still were hearing the word of God. You still were seeing Jesus say, “This is how you should serve.” The great thing about this is in John 13:17:
“If you know these things, you are blessed if you do them.
Lastly, service leads to joy. We don’t just serve and get nothing out of it, but perhaps another notch on our service belt. We serve out of obedience and we serve because of the joy that we will have in it.
God rewards us, and sometimes those rewards show up in different ways. Sometimes, those rewards will be things that we can see and that we can touch. Sometimes, it isn’t. Sometimes, many of us will have to wait until we get to heaven, and then we see the reward for our works.
However, what we have now, and I can guarantee for every single one of you, is that if you serve, you will have joy. If service leads to joy, and you don’t feel a lot of joy in your life, then what should you be doing more of? Serving, right?
If we want more joy, then you should do more service. That sounds really simple. I mean, I’m not a math major or a fancy scientist, but I know that more service equals more joy. Therefore, I want to serve more. I want to look for more opportunities to serve because I like joy. Hopefully, we could all walk out of here looking for ways to serve each other.
We want to be like Jesus, and if you are believer, you don’t really have much of a choice. You’re going to be more like Jesus. You may not like the way you get there, but you’re going to look more like Jesus. You might as well get there with a lot of joy.
This morning, my wife and I were driving here and listening to a song where he quotes this amazing Bible verse, and as I think about us looking for joy, I think it’s only appropriate. There are many of us here who are hurting. There are many of us here who are dealing with very difficult times in our lives. Psalms 34:19:
Many are the afflictions of the righteous, But the LORD delivers him out of them all.
No matter what you are going through, God will deliver you out of it, and if you want to have joy while you’re in it, then serve. That service may actually be the way that you’re delivered out of your despair and out of your depression. Serve others and focus on Christ. Point others toward Christ. This is what Jesus does here in our text. He left them with an example and leaves us with an example of how to serve. I pray that as I take my seat, we will all be serving like Jesus. Let’s pray:
Our great God, we just want to thank You for Your example of service. We want to thank You that we can look to Your word and know how we have to serve. We can look to Your word to know how we are to handle objections to a service. We can look to Your word to know how to get joy. I pray, God, that You will energize us for service and to be obedient to Your word. Lord, be with us in the times that we don’t want to serve or show love to each other. Be with us, Lord, as we walk this life imperfectly, but still striving to know Christ more. Help us to put sins to death and to look more like Jesus. We ask this in Christ’s name, Amen.