The Sacrifice of Service

by Andrew Rennie, Lynden SERVE Host Team Member

My second year on the Host Team of Lynden SERVE felt different from the first. The first year left me wishing I could have done more or been more involved. I was inspired by the work of the students, by witnessing their comradery and unity, and by watching our church come together and work purposefully to the glory of God. Still, it seemed to me that my part in this sacrifice of service was missing something.

Reflecting on the old sacrificial system, I realize pleasing sacrifices are rarely spontaneous. The spotless lamb doesn’t walk up to the alter on its own. The firewood must first be collected and seasoned before it’s burned, and the poetry of praise doesn’t just float in on the wind. Each sacrifice is created through availability and intentionality.

For me, the biggest stumbling blocks to serving were having the time to do it (the idolatry of availability) and only wanting to serve in ways I was comfortable with (the idolatry of success).

I know, deep down, that I must say “Here I am, Lord,” and then be willing to listen to his calling.

This year I decided to plan ahead and take the week of SERVE off work. By giving this sacrifice, it kept me available, freeing my mind from work worries and letting me focus on SERVE. I could cheerfully give my time flexibly, offering help wherever it was needed. Being willing to listen to his calling beautified the sacrifice.

As a Christian, I no longer rely on the old sacrificial system our Heavenly Father instituted for his people to enable and restore their relationship with himself. I know Christ accomplished it all on the cross. There is literally nothing I can add to his highest and most holy sacrifice, and yet, I am still called and compelled to live my life as a fragrant offering before his throne.

I want to bring a sacrifice of praise and I want to bring a sacrifice of service. I desire to love God more wholly and abide in him more deeply. Approaching SERVE as a love offering to the Lord this year made all of the difference.

“Here I am, Lord.”

[This is an excerpt from the Fall 2018 Magazine. To read more stories CLICK HERE]