Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins. Offer hospitality to one another without grumbling. Each one should use whatever gift he has received to serve others, faithfully administering God's grace in its various forms. If anyone speaks, he should do it as one speaking the very words of God. If anyone serves, he should do it with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ. 1 Peter 4:8-11
As human beings, we are all born very selfish. And I believe it gets worse as we age because that is exactly what society tells us to do. The world says to do whatever YOU can to make YOURSELF happy. If YOU'RE not happy, change something or get something that will make YOU happy. Therefore, we (myself included) can become very selfish and consequently disregard the needs and feelings of others around us. There have been two times in my life when the Lord has revealed how truly selfish I am.
The first was the day I married Scott. All of a sudden, I had someone else in my life on a daily basis. It was not just me anymore. Instead of doing everything my way and making the decisions that I wanted, I now needed to discuss it with my husband first. I needed to SERVE him. WHAT? Serve a MAN? I had learned about this phenomenon in marriage counseling, but to actually put it into practice was another story. This meant being the best wife I could be by submitting myself to him and serving our family. Again...WHAT? SUBMISSION to a MAN? Yes, submission to a wonderful man. I found this (and still do) very difficult at times, but also very rewarding. Through marriage the Lord has shown me how to serve someone besides myself. Now I did not say that I serve Scott as much as I should, but I am getting better. I am definitely a work in progress.
But just when I thought I had this serving thing down, the Lord humbled me again when He blessed me with the gift of motherhood. To have another life to nurture and look after brought a whole new level to the meaning of serving others. I realize now how much my mother served our family. She put our needs first and for that I pray she is richly blessed. I pray everyday that I can use the gifts that God has given me to serve Hannah and teach her through words and actions about the love of Christ.
However, as the mother of a 9 week old, sometimes I get tired at the 4:00am feeding and don't know how I can be of any use to anyone the next day. This is when the verse from 1 Peter reassures me. Peter says that when we serve others, God gives us the strength we need. Wow! Not my strength (because I couldn't make it a day), but God's strength. Christ was the ultimate servant. I pray that, with God's strength, I can learn to love and serve my family in a way that would bring Him glory.