I’ve been asked to do an Emmaus talk called “changing the world”, I’ll be posting a version of that talk later here on my blog. As well, I was reading part of the lectionary from Mark’s gospel 8:31-38. I’ve been thinking a lot about calling and about how we serve others, what motivates us to serve others.
Ok let’s be honest I’ve been thinking about if and why I might want to serve the world as a Methodist Deacon.
As I work to discern if he call I feel is truly one to the ministry I’ve been thinking about roller skating.
No really bear with me here.
Have you ever been roller skating or ice skating?
Have you gone in a group?
Has anyone in the group fallen?
Then have you tried to help them up?
If you aren’t planted firmly, if you aren’t standing on firm ground and centered yourself.
Yep you both fall.
Changing the world.
These things are a lot like that. If you aren’t centered yourself if you don’t stand on firm footing. Well you can fall over.
Think about it we see it all the time.
We see people motivated by perfectionism and motivated to force everyone into their picture of what it means to be holy. Jesus saw these folks too they were called Pharisee’s. This is one thing that turned me away from the church early in my life. But ironically I found myself turning this same eye on myself. Not forgiving myself or others for failings but instead judging without God’s grace.
There are other motivations too. Like those motivated not really to serve but to glorify themselves through their service. These do-gooders don’t really have a compassion and commitment to service but instead are motivated by their own need to be seen as being good.
And yep I’ve fallen into that trap before too.
How about this one? The savior complex. Feeling like if you don’t do it no one will. That it all falls to your shoulders to solve the problems of the world. These folks are always doing but it’s actually out of a fear and feeling that they are God rather than a sense of serving out God’s will.
And yet again I’ve seen this play out in my own life.
Lastly if you serve out of these motivations you are in real danger of becoming the last category.
The burned out. Those that run out of steam for service because they are running on their own fuel not God’s.
When you think about the ministry of Jesus as a model you realize that it was only out of Jesus’s close relationship with God and his disciples that allowed him to serve others well.
His center rested on those two things.
And when ours rests in the same, then we are balanced enough to lift others.
So, have you found your center?
Your Balance to allow you to serve out God’s will in the world?
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