May 21, 2018

Reciprocal Love Selflessly Serves

Written by Boyd Bailey

Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today – May 21, 2018

Now that I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also should wash one another’s feet. I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you.   John 13:14-15

My mother-in-law is a stroke victim. But for 55 years Jean outserved James, my father-in-law. Many, many times he has expressed to me and our children how his sweetie selflessly served him with a tone and tenor that brought great joy to her and a grateful heart to him. Bills—she paid on time. School activities for Timmy and Rita, their son and daughter, ever present as an engaged parent. A clean, and more importantly, caring home—Jean lavished with her loving smile and stunningly attractive servant spirit. Meals, always appetizing and plentiful for a college student like me to enjoy in a relaxing, supportive environment. But then the stroke struck.

Strokes, as you probably know, restrict life giving blood. In Jean’s case her brain suffered a temporary cessation of blood flow. It only took a short term shortage of blood to the brain to cause long term limitations to her speech and physical mobility. Speech therapy helped some, but after five years she is able to reason with her mind, but unable to clearly verbalize her thoughts. Now Jean requires James to serve her in the selfless ways she served him.

Beautifully, my father-in-law loves his bride with a heart of gratitude and with hands of selfless service. “She has served me all these years, I am honored to serve her. My purpose in life is to be there for her when she is afraid, frustrated and unable to take care of herself.” James out serves Jean, because he cherishes her and wants to honor her. He serves with great joy and gratitude!

Selfless Service Flushes Out Selfish Demands

Out-serve your spouse. This is not natural to our selfish self, but out-serve your spouse, and you will start to see positive differences in both of you. Service makes them feel cared for and makes you feel fulfilled; Service makes them feel loved and makes you feel rewarded; Service makes them feel respected and makes you feel significant. Of course, unappreciated service can wear you down over time, but trust God. Allow Him to supply the strength for your service. If the Lord is not empowering your service, you will eventually burn out and possibly become resentful. Bitter service does not last, but joyful service does.

Serve your spouse out of gratitude to God for giving them to you. Serve them in the routines of life and when they least expect it. Serve them where they want to be served, not just where you want to serve them. It may be unloading the dishwasher, taking out the garbage, mowing the lawn, maintaining the house, or taking care of the cars. Their service may include an organized family, dinner at home, being on time, keeping a calendar, or planning a trip. If you are unsure, ask them how they like to be served.

Carry this attitude of out-serving into your occupation. Be one who serves in the work place, especially if you are a leader or manager. Quietly and clandestinely clean up the break room, even wipe out the gooey microwave with its burst of flavors matted on the inside. Service from a sincere heart values and respects others. Our Savior modeled service. He did not come to be served, but to serve and to give His very own life as the ultimate act of service. When we enlist in the service of God’s Kingdom, we become His full-time servants. Service for our Savior is a thread that runs through the life of everyone who is led by the Lord. If Jesus is your model for leadership and living life, you serve.



Heavenly Father,  how would you have me serve my spouse, in Jesus’ name I pray, amen.


What need does my spouse have that only I can fulfill?

Related Reading

1 Peter 5:5; Matthew 11:29; 1 Timothy 4:12

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Jesus served others, even when He experienced great personal needs. #wisdomhunters #outserve

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