Summary: A message on servanthood.

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Sunday, July 13, 2008

Pastor Brian Matherlee

Main point: It takes people to reach people.

Illustration: Drop leaf table with the leaves down to begin with.

• Everybody loves a party. Last night my family was together and the activity and conversation around the table was great. We were loud. It’s a good thing they put us in a room by ourselves. We love to talk, we love to eat, and we love to catch up.

• Today, I have a table here. It’s a good little table and can serve my purposes well, depending on my purpose. I can sit and eat by myself, or I can have someone join me. But what if I want to include someone else? I want them to be served and have a place at the table. What do I do? I put up one of the leaves. (keep raising it up but don’t put the support there.)

• What’s the problem? The support must be used to make the table big enough.

I want us to see today how we are like the supports to this table.

Jesus gave the mandate in Matthew 28:19, “Therefore, go and make disciples.” Making disciples is hard work. It’s a lot of work. It is important work and we’re the ones Jesus asked to do it!

The Scripture refers to the Body of Christ. I want us to understand today that God desires to use this Body of believers.

1. It’s the design of the Body (I Corinthians 12)

a. The parts of our body have a job to do and they do it.

i. The hands don’t wonder if they’re supposed to do what they do.

ii. The feet don’t pause to think if they’re supposed to support or walk.

iii. The stomach certainly doesn’t question what it’s supposed to do with food.

iv. Why do we question whether or not we are supposed to act?

b. The Body works until it can’t.

i. Eyes see until they go dim.

ii. Ears hear until they go deaf

iii. Arms lift until they lose strength

iv. Hearts beat until we die.

v. Why do we think that there’s a time when we can retire from serving?

1. What would have happened had the four friends left the crippled man to himself.

2. What would have happened had Paul decided he had planted enough churches?

3. What would have happened

c. If one part of the body doesn’t do their work, the rest of the body suffers.

i. The willingness of each one to do their part means the body works more effectively.

2. It’s the calling of the Body (I Peter 2:9)

a. Being chosen to work for Almighty God. What a privilege!

b. There’s no one who is not someone in the kingdom service of God.

c. The royal priesthood is not reserved for ordained, professional clergy. It’s everyone who will declare by their acts of service that God is alive and longing for people to have a place at the table.

d. In our church it is neither financially feasible nor spiritually prudent to hire someone to do all the tasks necessary for the needs of this body of believers and our community to be met.

e. Pages consider it a privilege to serve in the political realm for the experience. People clamor to have apprenticeships with the rich and famous, smart and innovative. They’ll work for nothing or next to it for incredible amounts of time, little sleep and little thanks and come away glowing about the experience.

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