We all have people that we admire. To some it is the powerful athlete who plays with strength and finesse. To others it may be the musician that makes a particular instrument come alive with majestic music. To others it may be a political figure, a physician, an attorney, a theologian or maybe even a preacher or two. They are our heroes. We admire what they do, and may secretly desire to do the same.
At the risk of sounding pious, I must admit the people I admire most, are not very well known. If I mentioned their name many of you would not recognize it. They don't have any shoes; balls or golf clubs embellished with their name. In the worlds eyes they are "nobodies!" You see I admire people who have a servant’s heart. A heart that is willing to please God regardless of the cost. I call these people quiet servants.
Though these quiet servants are rarely in the spotlight, mainly because they insist on staying out of it, it is people like them that God has used in the most radical ways. God called one woman who comes to mind in her teenage years. The task that she was called to was one that required great risk. A risk that could have had her thrown out of her family and community. A risk that could have resulted in an embarrassing label for life. Yet this quiet servant did not argue, protest or resist, but humbly submitted to the call of the Lord.
Her willingness to be a quiet servant resulted in her being used in a more dramatic fashion than any other woman in history! Who was this woman? Mary, the mother of Jesus, who when the angel Gabriel told her this news simply said, "Behold the bond slave of the Lord; be it done to me according to your Word” (Luke ).
Oh to have that attitude and spirit! I don’t know about you, but when God asks me to do something risky, my first response is a series of questions! “What am I going to get out of this?” Thus with one eye focused on the impossibilities and the other eye focused on ourselves, we rarely serve as God has called us too.
As you celebrate this Christmas take some time and reflect on the quiet servant, who willingly became the mom of the greatest Servant who walked the face of the earth! Remember that Christ did not come “to be served, but to serve and to give His life as a ransom for many!” (Mark ) By being a servant Mary had the honor of playing a part in giving the greatest gift all! Christ came and purchased the free gift of salvation! Through Christ we are Free! Through Christ we are part of God’s eternal family! Wow, what an awesome gift! And a little quite young woman had a part in it!
This year as we shop till we drop trying to find the perfect gift for friends and loved ones who already have everything let’s take a minute and reflect on the gift of being a servant. Give a gift that is of great value and extremely rare today – quite service. In our faithfulness to quietly serve God and our neighbors, we might have the awesome privilege of being the bearer of the gift we call the Gospel and some we serve may receive that gift and inherit eternal life. I don’t know about you, but I take the free gift of eternal life any day over another tie!
Just imagine what God can do through faithful service! If God gave Mary the grace to serve, He will give it to you too. We all know that the average gift we give at Christmas, lasts only a short while, but the gift of service lasts a lifetime and the gift of salvation for eternity! Now that’s a great gift. Think about that and have great Christmas!