“Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves;”
(Php 2:3; NASB)
One of the most rewarding things you can do on any day is help someone. It doesn’t have to be anything big, or majorly time consuming. Just putting someone else’s needs before your own will result in a good feeling. There is an important element to giving or helping in today’s verse. It reads: “but with humility of mind…”, which is an important point. Helping and giving are noble acts when they are done with the right attitude. It’s important that we prayerfully help and give according to God’s will, not ours.
Humility of mind is not something easily attained. We usually tend to do things that make us feel good about ourselves. This cannot be our motivation behind serving others. Helping those in need always feels good. Consider however the possibility that your short-term help might prevent someone from getting the help they really need through someone else. We see this where parents allow their adult children to live at home while they’re using drugs or refusing to find a job.
Jesus lived His entire life serving others. His serving others served God. Anything that did not serve God, He didn’t do. There were people He didn’t heal or give what they wanted when they asked. For example, the crippled beggar in Acts chapter 3. We’re told he was at the temple gate every day. We know Jesus went to that temple many times. But it wasn’t until after Jesus’ death and resurrection he got noticed. Peter stopped and took notice that day even though Jesus had passed by repeatedly during His ministry.
What changed? It was the same crippled beggar, the same temple, and most likely Peter and John were with Jesus when He passed him by previously. The difference was that it was the right time to heal this man. The disciples listened to the Holy Spirit telling them to pay attention to the beggar. Scripture tells us this happen at the gate called “Beautiful”. It’s interesting that the Greek word translated as beautiful there can also mean “the right time”. Most likely Jesus didn’t respond to this man because it wasn’t God’s time to heal him. As a result, that healing had a much farther reaching effect because it happened when it did.
What this all means is that your giving and helping will have the greatest impact when you do these things in obedience to God and not because it feels good. That’s where the humility comes in. When we remain humble in our attitudes, God can use us to serve others in ways that will have the most benefit. Don’t give just because someone asks, or it feels good. Ask God where your resources and service will be of the most benefit and obey His answer. It is much more rewarding to serve knowing you have done the will of God rather than creating a feel-good moment.
Have a great week and God bless.
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