Today’s blog post is from my friend and colleague’s latest book, Habits for our Holiness. In this particular section of the book, Philip Nation focuses our attention on the responsibility and privilege of serving the spiritually lost. It’s a topic that I and David Francis address in a forthcoming book, Creating Commissioned Community.
Let Philip’s words about serving the lost sink in, and think about how you are accomplishing this through your Bible study group. Perhaps it will inspire, or be a wake-up call, to the need to maintain an outward focus in our Bible studies. Philip says,
Servanthood is often seen in the willingness to be interrupted. Rather than plow ahead with your personal agenda, service requires you to expend time on someone else. As you choose to minister, it becomes more than the mere declaration that you care about your friends. It is even more than the assertion that you love your friends. The time and energy spent in serving them shows them that the love you profess is real. As we do so, we may have the opportunity to tell them that your love stems from the love the Father has shown you. Our service should be shaped by that boundless attitude that no interruption is too great when someone else is in need…Through the simple tasks of changing tires or delivering food, we show esteem and value for one another. Everyone who receives the gift of service from you knows that selflessness is involved. They are not ignorant of the personal cost to you. As you serve, you build up the body of Christ because you reflect the heart of Christ.
Are you willing to be interrupted? Do you view people as an interruption or as an opportunity? How might God use the time you invest in others to bring the gospel a little closer to them? If you or your Bible study group are not regularly investing in others by serving them, consider some ways you could reach out and show the love of Christ to someone who is spiritually lost. As Philip says in his book, “Most people in your life do not need you to do something earth-shattering. You don’t always have to seek out grand designs for world change…our neighbors simply need compassion” (p.158).