This is the fourth in a 5-part series which takes on the very serious question: how do we Bless people practically? If we are supposed to be carrying out the vision of Grafted, “Honor God by helping as many people as possible become fully committed members in Christ’s Forever Family,” by using our mission, “Bless, Belong, Believe, and Bloom,” how are we supposed to do that first step, Bless? Dave Ferguson at the Verge Network asked that same question for his church’s missional communities (their version of small groups) and came up with a 5-point answer which changes “Bless” into an acronym:
- Begin with prayer,
- Service, and
Each of these 5 posts is going to take one of these ideas and give a bit of a biblical background to the idea and practical ideas for how to do it in real life. Welcome to week 4: Service.
When folks think of blessing others, often the idea of service is the idea of which people think. Jesus was big on service as he described His kingdom to His disciples.
Mark 10:42-45 records Him giving this lesson:
42 Jesus called them together and said, “You know that those who are regarded as rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their high officials exercise authority over them. 43 Not so with you. Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, 44 and whoever wants to be first must be slave of all. 45 For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”
If you want to be like Jesus, and be great among His followers, you must take on the mantle of a servant, and be “slave of all.” No one ever said following Jesus was going to be easy, in fact it is certainly going to mean laying down your own preferences for the sake of someone else. (This is, after all, what Jesus did for all of us when He laid down His life in one of the most horrible ways possible to become our death so that we could have eternal life.)
I am going to assume that you have been following along with this five-part series, and in the Blessing that you are trying to do you have started off praying, listened to the other persons felt and actual needs, shared a meal with them… at this point, knowing how to be a servant to them should have come up in conversation. What do you know about the person? Are they going through any transitions in their life? Are there any areas in their life where they would say that they are between a rock and a hard place, where you could help them?
While I feel like I could end this blog post here, I want to offer one bit of encouragement here: this is easier when you do it in the context of community. Pray in community. Listen in community. Eat in community. Serve in community. This is one of the reasons why we push everyone at Grafted to be actively involved in one of our small groups. If our church lost the ability to meet on Sundays as a whole church, much of what it means to be a follower of Jesus could be learned and practiced while being a part of a Grafted Small Group. If you have more questions about any of this, don’t hesitate to contact us. We love getting together to talk about what God is doing at our church!