If joy is not a part of your daily experience, this short message is for you…
Bob Dylan and Bill Bright agreed with the lyrics to Dylan’s song “Gotta Serve Somebody”:
“Well, it may be the devil or it may be the Lord, but you’re gonna have to serve somebody…. You may be a businessman or a high-degree thief. They may call you Doctor or they may call you Chief…. You may be rich or poor, you may be blind or lame, you may live in another country under another name…. but no matter what you say; you’re gonna serve somebody, yes indeed, you’re gonna have to serve somebody.”
Choosing to subordinate our will to someone or something else often makes our rebellious hearts cringe, and yet we do it all the time.
Choosing to abuse alcohol, drugs, people… may have started as a personal choice but it always ends in slavery to a brutal master. Choosing to embezzle funds, lie, cheat… may start out as a choice but you quickly become enslaved to hiding what you chose to do. You may choose to live above your income but debt soon becomes your master. You may choose to serve you and you alone, but soon find you are enslaved to your own self adoration.
The reality is, “You gotta serve somebody.”
The question is, “Who are you going to serve?”
Our egos may want the recognition given to Mother Teresa, the saint of Calcutta, but if the Master wants you to go into the streets with starving, diseased masses will you obey? That is the rub isn’t it? Does a slave inform the Master of the “rules and boundaries” of his service? And yet we often want to dictate to our Lord and Master what our service should look like and entail.
There is one more harsh master that enslaves far too many of us. When we depend on our own efforts to live the Christian life we are enslaved indeed. Legalistic rituals are played out in far too many lives today. Striving to do things for God in the flesh is a trap. Formulas do not bring joy. Only the precious Holy Spirit can produce true joy. As long as our ideas, our works and our plans are driving us, we will know little joy.
Since “you gotta serve somebody” choose wisely who and what you serve.
Dear friends, there is a fountain of joy to be released in our lives. It burst forth with Vonette and me as we decided to become slaves by choice of our magnificent Master, Savior and Friend, the Lord Jesus Christ.
We did it of our own free will, and it has been the most liberating and joyful decision we have ever made, apart from our salvation. This decision, far from being a life of rules and regulations and legalism, is based on how wonderfully trustworthy our Master is. He frees us to serve Him gladly in the joy and excitement of His resurrection.
If you’re having trouble committing to be His slave by choice start by committing to know Him better. Read GOD, Who Are You Anyway? and discuss it with a group of friends. He truly is the only Master that can promise joy, fulfilment and freedom.
Romans 6:16 NLT “Don’t you realize that you become the slave of whatever you choose to obey? You can be a slave of sin, which leads to death, or you can choose to obey God, which leads to righteous living.”
Romans 6:22-23 NLT “But now you are free from the power of sin and have become slaves of God. Now you do those things that lead to holiness and result in eternal life. For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord.”
GOD, because You love me and your plan for me is best, I will humbly submit to You in all things.
Adapted from My Life Is Not My Own by Bill Bright
©2022 Bright Media Foundation