Tuesday, July 04, 2006

What kind of heart is a heart that serves?

I have been looking lately at some ways Jesus really demonstated what it means to serve. I find my heart so far removed from this most of the time.

He came not be served, but to serve and give His life a ransom for many. He humbled Himself not only by taking on flesh and blood but becoming a servant to man that He created.

His service involved giving up. He as Lord of the Sabbath gave up His day of rest to heal many times. Not once but many times. Look at all he healed on his day off: man in Capernaum with an evil spirit; a man with shriveled hand; a crippled woman; an invalid by Pool of Bethesda and a man born blind.

He gave retreats and times alone. When mourning over the death of his friend and cousin, he took his disciples on a retreat, only to be followed by a mob. That didn't even bother to bring their own picnic lunch. He had to feed them as well as heal them.

There something in that story of feeding the crowd of 5k. 'He had compassion on them.' (Matt14:34-35). My pastor, Gene, pointed out a few weeks that when Jesus saw crowds, he had compassion on them.

The crowds after ministering to all their needs? (Matthew 9:35-38) (And Gene's text that Sunday.) He had compassion.

I keep seeing others... (not all crowds mind you - it is the response to being moved by compassion that I see)

The feeding the crowd of the 4k? (Matthew 15:29-34) He had compassion on them.

Two blind men in Jericho? (Matt 20:29-34) He had compassion on them.

A man with leprosy? (Mark 1:40-42) He had compassion on him.

Gene asked, 'how do we respond we see crowds?' I can't seem to get this out of my head. Maybe because repeated he the question the next Sunday. Maybe because I keep thinking about it while I drive in rush hour, while I am at the grocery store, etc.

(Okay I googled and found this picture that was actually a joke on someone's site but maybe it serves a purpose. Jesus would respond a lot different than me in this situation. )

I hate crowds. (Except at a sporting event with likeminded fans - but then I hate crowds again when trying to leave.) Hate? Yeah that's a coorect word when I am honest with how my heart is. I tolerate crowds at times I guess. But rarely do I have compassion. In fact it is so rare I could probally recall every time I have moved been to compassion when seeing crowds. It is to my shame. I am not anywhere like Christ. He had compassion. I am self-centered. Philippians 2:5-11, says I should have the attitude He had as a servant.

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort! You are compassionate and you look on me with the same compassion you did the leper, I need healing too. Oh Lord help me gain a heart like yours! Help me to see others the way you do.

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