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Taste of McClendon - Service with a Smile!

Romans 12:3-13

Sermon by Rick Crandall

McClendon Baptist Church - Aug. 26, 2007

*You know that old cliché, “Service with a smile!” Don’t you like service with a smile? So does God. He wants service with a smile from us. Here’s where the smiles come from.

1. First: The right appreciation for everyone.

*Paul stressed this kind of appreciation in vs. 3-5. Listen to these verses from the NIV, where Paul said, “By the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the measure of faith God has given you. Just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, so in Christ we who are many form one body, and each member belongs to all the others.” The Amplified Bible adds that we are “mutually dependent on one another.”

*Every believer is a part of the Body of Christ. Every believer has a purpose in the Body of Christ. Every believer has great value in the Body of Christ. If you ever doubt it, remember the high price that was paid for you. As we read in 1 Peter 1:18-19, “you were not redeemed with corruptible things, like silver or gold, from your aimless conduct received by tradition from your fathers, but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot.”

*Whoever you are, believer, the highest price was paid for you, and God wants us to appreciate that. Country comedian Jerry Clower once told about a lady he knew down in Amite County. She lived near a construction site, and workers were putting a tar roof on the building near her house.

*This lady had 16 children -- or "young’uns" as Jerry would call them. One day she lost one of her children. Jerry said she got to hunting him and discovered he had fallen into a 50-gallon drum of black roofing tar at the construction site.

*She reached down, hauled him up, took a look at him -- Then shoved him back down in that drum of tar, and said, "Boy, it’d be a lot easier to have another one than to clean you up." (1)

*Aren’t you glad God doesn’t feel that way about us? No -- He was willing to go the greatest distance, pay the highest price, suffer the greatest loss, when He died on the cross for our sins. That means you are somebody! So God wants us to appreciate you. And that will help us serve with a smile.

2. God wants service with a smile. This comes from the right appreciation for everyone, but also from the right participation from everyone.

*God wants every believer to participate in His work. He wants every part of the Body to do their part in the Body, so vs. 6-8 in the NLT tell us that:

6. God has given each of us the ability to do certain things well. So if God has given you the ability to prophesy, speak out when you have faith that God is speaking through you.

7. If your gift is that of serving others, serve them well. If you are a teacher, do a good job of teaching.

8. If your gift is to encourage others, do it! If you have money, share it generously. If God has given you leadership ability, take the responsibility seriously. And if you have a gift for showing kindness to others, do it gladly.

*All of us are necessary for the Body of Christ to function the way God wants it to function. God has something for all of us to do, and He equips us to do just what He wants us to do. I can’t sing like Paul or cook like Janice; I can’t play the organ or piano or drums, but that’s O.K. because God has something else for me to do. We all have our part to play.

*As Paul said in 1 Corin 12:

17. Suppose the whole body were an eye-then how would you hear? Or if your whole body were just one big ear, how could you smell anything?

18. But God made our bodies with many parts, and he has put each part just where he wants it.

19. What a strange thing a body would be if it had only one part!

20. Yes, there are many parts, but only one body.

21. The eye can never say to the hand, "I don’t need you." The head can’t say to the feet, "I don’t need you."

22. In fact, some of the parts that seem weakest and least important are really the most necessary.

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