Serving in the church is a good thing. But what happens when excitement becomes exhaustion, when there is no satisfaction and much less joy? Are we supposed to keep serving no matter what?
In Revelation 2, Jesus told the church at Ephesus that He’d seen their serving and He was not impressed. They had forgotten why they served.
“You have forgotten your first love,” Jesus said. Their deeds were empty because the desire behind them was empty.
It is easy to be a slave to Christian service instead of being in love with the one we serve. When we forget the price paid for our salvation and let self-centeredness, even apathy, steal our joy, our work in the church becomes empty and displeasing to Jesus.
What we do will never be as important as who we serve. If we’re too busy doing things for Jesus that we’re not spending time with Him then we’re no different from the church at Ephesus.
Our relationships with Jesus grow as we read the Bible and talk to Him in prayer. Through time together, we learn more about who Jesus is and what He wants for us. And as we do, we’ll find ourselves falling more in love with Jesus each day and better able to serve with enthusiasm, love, and joy.
- Are you as in love with Jesus now as you were when you were first saved? What’s changed?
- We have all been given unique talents, skills, and abilities. What are yours? How are you using your gifts to serve the church?
- If you are serving in the church, does serving feel like a joy or an obligation? What can you do this week to remember your first love?