VIDEO The Depths of His Love: He Came to Serve and Sacrifice

For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many. Mark 10:45

Robert K. Greenleaf (d. 1990) was a corporate executive who became disenchanted with top-down, authoritarian leadership styles in major corporations. In 1964, he left the corporate world and founded the Greenleaf Center for Servant Leadership. He spent the rest of his career consulting with major corporations, institutions, and organizations—spreading the idea that the best leaders are those who are servant leaders. The servant-leadership movement continues to grow worldwide.

Long before Robert K. Greenleaf coined a new term and model for leadership, Jesus was employing it in His own ministry. Servant leaders were a rarity in Jesus’ day; the religious leaders of that day promoted their own authority and prominence. But Jesus set aside His authority when He came to earth to be a servant to mankind. What motivates someone to serve others? Nothing short of unconditional love. Servant-leaders seek the best interests of those they lead, expecting nothing in return. Jesus’ love for the world motivated Him to serve by sacrificing His life for us.

Jesus demonstrated the depths of His love by sacrificing His life as a servant.

A Christian man is a perfectly dutiful servant, subject of all, subject to all. Martin Luther

Kingdom Climbers (Mark 10:31–45) — A Sermon by R.C. Sproul

Servants of the Night

May the Lord bless you from Zion. Psalm 134:3

It’s 3 a.m. at an acute-care hospital. A worried patient presses the call button for the fourth time in an hour. The night-shift nurse answers without complaint. Soon another patient is screaming, crying for attention. The nurse isn’t surprised. She requested the night shift five years ago to avoid her hospital’s daytime frenzy. Then the reality hit. Night work often meant taking on extra tasks, such as lifting and turning patients by herself. It also meant closely monitoring patients’ conditions so physicians could be notified in emergencies.

Buoyed by close friendships with her nighttime co-workers, this nurse still struggles to get adequate sleep. Often, she asks her church for prayer, seeing her work as vital. “Praise God, their prayers make a difference.”

Her praise is good and right for a night worker—as well as for all of us. The psalmist wrote, “Praise the Lord, all you servants of the Lord, who minister by night in the house of the Lord. Lift up your hands in the sanctuary and praise the Lord” (Psalm 134:1–2).

This psalm, written for the Levites who served as temple watchmen, acknowledged their vital work—protecting the temple by day and night. In our nonstop world, it feels proper to share this psalm especially for nighttime workers, yet every one of us can praise God in the night. As the psalm adds, “May the Lord bless you from Zion, he who is the Maker of heaven and earth” (v. 3).

By:  Patricia Raybon

Reflect & Pray

When you consider nighttime workers—nurses, janitors, first responders, and others—what prayers on their behalf can you offer to God? Why would praising God lead to a blessing from Him for nighttime workers?

Dear God, in the early morning hours while I safely sleep, send Your blessings to nighttime workers doing vital work in my community. And help me to praise You in the night.

Equipped to Do His Will

We might be afraid to answer God’s call, but He promises to equip us with everything we will need

Exodus 3:1-14

When he was called to lead the Israelites out of Egypt, Moses argued that he was the wrong person for the job because his speaking skills weren’t good (Exodus 4:10). I’ve met people who likewise knew the Lord had called them to do something, but they didn’t believe they could. This is actually a form of rebellion. It amounts to telling God that He isn’t powerful enough to equip you—and that for His will to be accomplished, it depends upon your ability. 

God is more than able to equip His followers, but He can achieve His purposes with or without us. He promises that if we believe Him and move forward in obedience, He will reveal what He wants done and enable us to accomplish it. Philippians 2:13 says that God Himself “is at work in you, both to desire and to work for His good pleasure.” There’s nothing to fear. We never have to take on His work in our own strength, and He won’t assign any task without enabling us. He is committed to equipping His children to do whatever He asks.

As a follower of Christ, you have a personal responsibility to say yes when God calls and to let Him achieve His purposes through you. He won’t let you down. Recalling how He’s worked in your past will strengthen your faith. And His continued work will conform you to the image of His Son.

Christ the Foundation

“For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ.” (1 Corinthians 3:11)

The only sure and lasting foundation for either a Christian institution or an individual Christian life is the Lord Jesus Christ. No other foundation will endure in that coming day when “the fire shall try every man’s work of what sort it is” (v. 13).

It is vital, therefore, to build on the foundation that Christ Himself has laid. This is laid in three courses, each of which is essential for its permanence. First of all, we must acknowledge with the apostle that “Thou, Lord, in the beginning hast laid the foundation of the earth; and the heavens are the works of thine hands” (Hebrews 1:10). He is the Creator of all things, and therefore Lord over all.

Second, we must acknowledge with Peter that we have been “redeemed…with the precious blood of Christ…who verily was foreordained before the foundation of the world” (1 Peter 1:18-20). His foreordained work of redemption thus was foundational even to the foundation of the world!

Then there is the Word of God, which is foundational to everything beyond creation and redemption. “Whosoever cometh to me, and heareth my sayings, and doeth them….He is like a man which built an house, and digged deep, and laid the foundation on a rock: and when the flood arose, the stream beat vehemently upon that house, and could not shake it: for it was founded upon a rock” (Luke 6:47-48).

The Lord Jesus Christ is the true foundation, for He has Himself laid every sure foundation. He created all things, His shed blood is the price to redeem all things, and His written Word, by His Holy Spirit, reveals all things needed to build a beautiful, fruitful Christian life or ministry. No other foundation will last, and “if the foundations be destroyed, what can the righteous do?” (Psalm 11:3). HMM

In Spirit and in Truth

Now we know that God heareth not sinners: but if any man be a worshipper of God, and doeth his will, him he heareth. —John 9:31

We need to double our efforts to tell the world that God is Spirit and those who worship Him must worship Him in spirit and in truth.

It must be by the Holy Spirit and truth. We cannot worship in the spirit alone, for the spirit without truth is helpless.

We cannot worship in truth alone, for that would be theology without fire.

Worship must be in spirit and in truth!

It must be the truth of God and the Spirit of God. When a person, yielding to God and believing the truth of God, is filled with the Spirit of God, even his faintest whisper will be worship. WHT045-046

I can offer no worship wholly pleasing to God if I know that I am harboring elements in my life that are displeasing to Him. I cannot truly and joyfully worship God on Sunday and not worship Him on Monday….I repeat my view of worshipno worship is wholly pleasing to God until there is nothing in me displeasing to God. WHT124-125

No Matter What …

But I am like a flourishing olive tree in the house of God; I trust in God’s faithful love forever and ever.—Psalm 52:8

As he encourages himself in God, David utters: “The Lord is my shepherd; there is nothing I lack” (Ps 23:1). What a bold and positive statement to make! At first glance, however, the words seem quite absurd. Here is David in the midst of intense privation, hunted and hounded by hostile enemy forces, deserted by many of his former supporters—yet quietly affirming, “there is nothing I lack.” In the past I have known many Christians who have had great difficulty in understanding this phrase. They have said, “How can I recite this verse with any meaning when I want so many things? I want a happy family, better living conditions, an adequate supply of money, employment, a wife, a husband” and so on.

David’s meaning becomes clear when we dig a little deeper into the original Hebrew words that are used. Our translation says: “There is nothing I lack.” Another puts it like this: “I shall not lack any good thing.” “The main thought,” says one commentator, “is that of not lacking—not being deficient—in proper care, management or husbandry.”

So what David is really saying is this: no matter what hardships or privations come my way, I am confident of this one thing—that I shall not lack the expert care and tender supervision of my Master and my Shepherd. There were many things that David lacked—he lacked the comforts of life, family affection, physical security, and so on. What he did not lack, however, was the assurance that God was with him in his difficulties, managing his affairs and turning all his stumbling blocks into stepping-stones.


Dear Lord Jesus, You who took everything that men threw at You and made it work toward Your ends—teach me how to do the same. Impress this truth deeply upon my spirit: that it is not what happens to me, but what I do with it, that determines the result. Amen.

Further Study

Isa 40:11; 41:1-10; Dt 33:27; Ps 18:35-36

What was God’s assurance to the children of Israel?

What was the psalmist’s affirmation?


2 Corinthians 5:15

I saw it so clearly, Lord,

Through the words of one of your servants.

I have built hedges around my life

without realizing it.

Higher and higher they have grown

without my knowledge.

These hedges have shut others out and myself in.

It was comfortable, so comfortable and cozy.

Less demanded of me,

less expected of me, only myself to consider.

I have hedged about my time. My time!

Did I create time to be my own?

Have I sovereign right to twenty-four hours a day?

Is not each hour a token of Your grace?

I have hedged about my leisure,

My free time is my own, I have said,

and I have miserly gloated over it,

resenting any encroachment upon it.

I have hedged about my love.

These, and these only, I care for,

my nearest, my dearest, my friends,

all precious because they are mine.

Forgive me, Lord. Forgive my selfish living,

my disregard of others.

Help me to tear down the high hedges I have built

and in their place to plant an open garden.

Then I can look out

and others can look in

and we shall be drawn nearer to one another.

Flora Larsson, Just A Moment, Lord

VIDEO Twenty Miles From Home

You will guide me with Your counsel, and afterward receive me to glory. Psalm 73:24

You know you’re in trouble when your guide gets lost. In 1910, four Mounties headed into a treacherous part of Canada by dog sled, hoping to make it to Dawson City. Their guide got lost and they wandered endlessly, lost on wrong trails. They ate their dogs and boiled their bootlaces trying to stay alive. They didn’t make it. In fact, they perished only forty kilometers from their starting place. Today the beautiful Dempster Highway is named for the man who found them—the Lost Patrol. 

Our Guide will never get lost, cannot get lost, cannot be confused. He guides us in His strength (Exodus 15:13), in His justice (Psalm 25:9), with His eye (Psalm 32:8), and even unto death (Psalm 48:14). That’s why we can sing, “Guide Me, O Thou Great Jehovah!”

God will always take care of His children. He is our ever-present Comfort and Guide. He will guide you with His counsel and afterward lead you straight into His eternal kingdom. Seek His leading today, even in the smallest matters.

Savior, guide me on my journey, till the bounds of life are past; / Then, with all my labors ended, bear me safely home at last. J. M. Cowgill, “Savior, Guide Me”

God Is Good, Psalm 73 – Pastor Chuck Smith – Topical Bible Study

Spiritual Diagnosis

We will not listen to the message you have spoken to us in the name of the Lord. Jeremiah 44:16

Chemotherapy reduced the tumor in my father-in-law’s pancreas, until it didn’t. As the tumor began to grow again, he was left with a life-and-death decision. He asked his doctor, “Should I take more of this chemo or try something else, perhaps a different drug or radiation?”

The people of Judah had a similar life-and-death question. Weary from war and famine, God’s people wondered whether their problem was too much idolatry or not enough. They concluded they should offer more sacrifices to a false god and see if she would protect and prosper them (Jeremiah 44:17).

Jeremiah said they had wildly misdiagnosed their situation. Their problem wasn’t a lack of commitment to idols; their problem was that they had them. They told the prophet, “We will not listen to the message you have spoken to us in the name of the Lord!” (v. 16). Jeremiah replied, “Because you have burned incense and have sinned against the Lord and have not obeyed him or followed his law or his decrees or his stipulations, this disaster has come upon you” (v. 23).

Like Judah, we may be tempted to double down on sinful choices that have landed us in trouble. Relationship problems? We can be more aloof. Financial issues? We’ll spend our way to happiness. Pushed aside? We’ll be equally ruthless. But the idols that contributed to our problems can’t save us. Only Jesus can carry us through our troubles as we turn to Him.

By:  Mike Wittmer

Reflect & Pray

What personal problem has you stumped and how are you tempted to respond in a sinful way? What do you think Jesus might want you to do?

Jesus, I’d rather fail with You than succeed without You.

How to Seek God

Our longing for the Lord is cultivated through intentional time and effort

Psalm 105:1-8

Yesterday we learned what it means to seek God, but many of us don’t know where to begin.  

Start with the Scriptures and prayer. Set aside time each day for meditating on God’s Word: Listen for His voice, slowly digest what you read, talk to the Lord, ask Him questions, and apply what you learn. Don’t just read the Bible—study it, perhaps starting with a verse or short passage. Some of you may say, “I’ve never been into that.” My advice: Get into it! The deep things of God don’t just drop into our brains; they are placed there through diligent study. 

Hunger for the Lord is an acquired taste. The more we pursue Him, the greater our craving will be. However, if we ignore God, what little hunger we have will diminish even further. 

Do you find this last statement describes your experience? Then ask the Lord to whet your appetite for Him, and follow through by becoming a seeker. This requires time and effort, two things we want to invest wisely. 

To neglect the Lord would mean cheating yourself of the benefits He promises to those who diligently seek Him. No one wants to go after that which is fleeting. Choose instead to pursue the Eternal One—the source of all contentment, joy, and hope.