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Real Discipleship - How to Become #1 in God's Eyes, Part 2

Living on the Edge / Chip Ingram
The Truth Network Radio
July 7, 2022 6:00 am

Real Discipleship - How to Become #1 in God's Eyes, Part 2

Living on the Edge / Chip Ingram

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July 7, 2022 6:00 am

‘Servant leadership’ is a buzzword in our society today… and it’s often grossly misunderstood as some sort of passive, “let people walk all over you” idea. In this program, Chip corrects this stereotype, as he wraps up his series – “Real Discipleship: How Jesus Chose to Change the World.” Don’t miss what it really means to be a servant to all.

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Servant leadership is a buzzword in our day.

Unfortunately, it is often grossly misunderstood as some sort of passive mamby-pamby, let other people do whatever they want. Today you're going to learn the third aspect of becoming a servant leader. It's called positive ambition, and you don't want to miss it. Thanks for listening to this Edition of Living on the Edge with Chip Ingram. Living on the Edge is an international discipleship ministry focused on helping Christians live like Christians. I'm Dave Drouin, and in this program we'll wrap up our series, Real Discipleship, How Jesus Chose to Change the World. We really pray Chip's words have impacted you and challenged you to work at becoming a more genuine disciple of Jesus.

Now before we get started, if you're new to Living on the Edge or missed any part of this series, connect with us through the Chip Ingram app. With that, if you have a Bible, turn now to Mark chapter 10 for part 2 of Chip's talk, How to Become Number One in God's Eyes. The third thing that grows out of this is not only gratitude and humility, but the people that I find that are servants, I get this right out of this passage, is a positive ambition. Positive ambition to live a life of impact, to live a life of love, and to live a life of significant people who really are servants, are not going around thinking, oh I'm not worth anything, I'm not very good, God could never use me. No, what they are, they're grateful, they're humble, and they have this positive ambition, they want to be great. They want their world to change, they want their neighborhood to change, and they're motivated, and all they're asking is, God, how do I channel this motivation?

And God says, you want to be great? Yeah! You want to make an impact?

Yeah! You want to really love people? Yeah, serve them. But see, that love and that impact and that positive ambition to do something significant, if humility doesn't precede it, it's just ego in Christian clothes. And if gratitude doesn't precede it, then it's just energized out of the flesh. Do you remember Gandhi? Did you know that at one point in Gandhi's life, he was a very serious student of the Bible, read all through the Gospels, studied the life of Christ, and came to the conclusion that the life of Jesus and the teachings of Jesus were probably the best thing he'd ever read to break down the caste system in India? And he began to investigate Christianity, so he went to, of all places, a Christian church. And so he went to a Christian church, a Bible teaching church in India. And when he came to the door, he was quite different than the group that was meeting there. And the ushers told him, why don't you leave and find some group that teaches about Jesus is like you? And Gandhi walked away thinking, apparently the Christians have a class system too, and I might as well find out a different way to break it down. Can you imagine what would happen if those ushers would have said, hey brother, it doesn't matter what color, it doesn't matter the length of the hair, it doesn't matter where you're coming from. Tell you what man, there's level ground at the cross.

Can you imagine what could have happened in India? So the first is the heart. The second is the eyes. And what I've observed from people who are great servants is they're very astute observers to the needs and the likes and the dislikes of others. They not only flows out of the heart, but they have eyes. When they come into a room, they look at what needs are. They look into people's eyes and situations, and they're always looking what they might need. My tendency is I'm always looking about what I need.

The third thing is the heart, the eyes, and I think the mind. People who are real servants, they're people who think ahead. They plan ahead for opportunities to meet the needs of other people.

Now think about this. Thinking ahead to love someone. I've got a good friend that went through a real financial travesty the last several months. And I got a check in the mail from a guy I don't know very well, to be honest. And to make a long story short, he just said, you know, your friend's going through a rough time and you find out how rough it is and then you fill in the number and we want to love him and help him. And I don't know much about all that stuff, and there's a guy on our board who's a banker, and I turned it all over to him and said, you take care of it. And he did a little research and found out that the fellow and his wife had a practice at the beginning of the year.

They set aside an X amount for an emergency fund in case someone was in some sort of trauma or tragedy. And so when the thing came up, they just said, oh, so this is what God wants to use this for. Now I got to tell you something, that thought has never occurred to me, has it to you? But you see, that's the mind of a servant. It's looking at the people you live with, the people you work with, looking at their habits and their needs, when they get up, when they go to bed, where they're struggling, what they're sharing with you, planning ahead and meeting a need. After the eyes, I think next is a servant, have a servant's ears. And you cannot imagine to listen intently, actively, and enthusiastically to people what that does.

See, a servant is more interested in what you have to share with me and what it means in your life. Most conversations go something like this. Hey, boy, I'm really struggling with something. I'm feeling really depressed. And gosh, I don't know.

Yeah, you know, I felt depressed last year too. Boy, and I really had a rough time with it. Gosh, oh, how are you doing with it? Yeah, you know, boy, what's happened?

You know, my mom was going through some rough times and went through some, what happened? See, in many of our conversations, you know what we do? Someone starts to share a need. Instead of intently, actively, enthusiastically listening to them, asking questions that draw out and just caring for them, we tend to have our motor running. We don't really listen.

If we ever charted, you ought to chart a family conversation sometime. It's usually like a star-shaped deal where what we do is we just interrupt one another and we use key words to jump off what they said to say what we want to say. Psychological research tells us one of the most powerful means of communication is to listen intently. See, servants listen. They just listen.

They ask some questions that care. So we've got the heart, the mindset of a servant. We've got the eyes that looks for needs. We have the mind that plans ahead.

We have the ears that listen. And then with the feet, I think the key here is that you learn to be a servant like you walk. It's just a little at a time. I think often I want to do some big servant thing and say, aha, I served everybody. You know, spend a lot of money or do some big deal. And what I've learned is the people that are really servants are people who realize that being a servant basically has to do with the little things. God will give you chances to serve big, but Luke 16 says, he who is faithful in a very little thing is faithful also in much.

And he who is unrighteous in a very little thing is unrighteous also in much. I made a note of some little things that have really made an impact on me. This may not sound like much to you, but several months ago we got an electric blanket. You know, it's really neat. It's a little thing.

My wife turns on my side before I get there. It's a little thing, but I like it. When you sit at a restaurant, have you ever thought of where the best view is and walk in and not make a big deal about it, but just find the seat so the other person gets the best view?

See, it's a little thing, but what is it? It reinforces that mindset. Have you ever been in an eating situation, especially buffet style, and realized that a lot of people ain't much food? And just taking a little, I mean not noticeable so everyone can say, oh my, what's, but you know, just kind of wise and astute and think about, have you ever eaten pizza with junior high kids? Whatever they do, do the opposite and it's being a servant.

I'm dead serious. I've seen them almost claw each other to death the last piece of pizza. You know, one guy's got nine pieces in his mouth and he's reaching you for that second piece of pepperoni. You know, this is a guy who did this and I didn't know what he was doing. He was an old navigator. Old navigators have unusual ways, but he and I were in a bathroom, a men's bathroom, we were on a trip. Guy gets done going to the bathroom and I'm thinking, hey man, what are you doing? And he said, I'm cleaning this off. He said, you're cleaning what off? He said, can you believe how people leave this for the next person? He took a paper towel, a couple of dry paper towels and wiped off the seat.

He went over to the sink, it took him about 20 seconds max, and that bathroom was 100% better than when we came in. And he said, you know, so and so discipled me and I guess I've always learned from watching his life, a disciple always leaves something better than he found it. And he said, I don't have to know the next person's going to sit on that seat. And yet, see, it's not a big thing, is it? But see, the key to being a servant is starting to think that way. Well, that's the feet, the little things.

And then finally, the last part here is the back. And what I mean by this is that a real servant looks for pats on the back from God, not from others. And that means they don't get ticked off when they don't get credit.

And they don't get ticked off when they get treated like a servant. The heart is the mindset, the eyes are being observant, the mind is planning ahead, the ears is listening, the feet is the walk, the little things, and the back is where do you get your strokes? Now, real quickly on how to serve wisely, here's the axiom and then I want to give you three quick points on it. The axiom is you and I must be willing to do any job at any time.

There's nothing below us. The axiom is you do whatever any time that needs to be done that God tells you to do. With that said, as a general rule, you need to serve out of your strengths. You need to do enough of everything to keep your humility intact. But as a general rule, serve out of your strengths. See, sometimes I think servanthood and lowliness or servanthood and menial tasks get so tied together that a lot of people have some really skewed ideas about being a servant.

You need to minister the great majority, 80 plus, 85% of your time out of your strengths so that you can make the greatest contribution. I remember Dr. Rodmacher one morning talking to us about being a servant and it really bothered him. He walked by his office and there was a lot of weeds and he had about 150 papers that needed to be graded and some important meetings and he just couldn't resist. Took off his jacket and he's pulling weeds and he gets carried away.

About an hour later, the students are showing up for class and one of the students sarcastically said, oh gosh, will this have more eternal impact for us prof than you giving me feedback on my paper that's not back to me yet? Now, does a guy need to be willing to weed a garden? You bet. Does the president of a seminary need to spend his time weeding a garden rather than doing the things that only he can do?

No. See, you've got to ask where can you make the greatest contribution in the body of Christ? What can you do that no one else can do or what can you do that no one else is willing to do? And that's where you serve. Serve out of your strengths. The second thing you need to do is serve out of your passions and your gifts. And this is that God has made you with a design.

That He's given you a gift mix, that He's given you past experiences, that He's given you a desire to do some things. So serve in a way that is according to your design. Being willing to do anything but you do what's on your heart. You do what you're good at. I meet a lot of people that have the warped idea that if it's fun and enjoyable and you feel energized and God is using you and you feel real joy inside, well that's obviously not God's will. I wonder what else I should do.

You know, God's will is going to be hard and tough and rigorous and not very fun and sacrificial and uh-uh. Parents, what kind of people do you want serving your kids? I want energetic people who think this is, you know, those people want to work with adults, let them, they're missing it, right? Huh?

We're where the action is. Out of your strengths, out of your gifts, out of your passions. The final thing is minister out of your overflow instead of out of your overload. And here's where what I'd really like to say is I'm concerned probably about you because I feel like some of us haven't set a good example in recent months is that service for Jesus Christ primarily should be an overflow of the rich experience you're having with Him, the rich experience with brothers and sisters in Christ, the rich experience with family and so that with energy and zeal and joy you have made very hard priority decisions and that your life is not filled with hurry and stress and push. You know, it's funny, Jesus accomplished more than any man who ever lived but He never hurried.

He never hurried. And what I'm talking about here is self-care, not selfishness but self-care, recharging your battery, not burning it at both ends. I just came to a realization after conning myself for several months that I was preaching a better game than I was living. You know, all of you have been there, you know, you push and you push and just after this one more thing, just after this one more thing, just after this one more thing and, you know, you have those times where you sing a chorus and for no reason you can feel the tears swelling up, that tells you you're near the, I mean, if it's positive emotion that's great but when you're kind of burned out and when someone says, you know, my dog, we named it Fred, you go, oh gosh man, you know, kind of gets me right here.

You understand what I'm saying? And then you get up and half of your quiet time is spent asking God for the energy to look at life the right way because you just feel like you're fighting depression all the time. Those are signs of burnout. Those are signs of just push, push, push.

And what I realized, you got a great self-care. Ask yourself, are you ministering and ministering without quality filling the spiritual tank, quiet, quality time with God? Are you filling the emotional tank? Are you laughing? Are you having some fun?

Is every night booked up or are you with some people you're enjoying and kicking back and relaxing with? You know, the social tank, are you getting that filled up? And then, you know, physically, I don't know what it is about, especially us evangelicals, you know, the body is the temple of God but gee whiz, the way we eat and the way we don't exercise and the way we don't take care of it, you think we don't believe it. If you don't take care of your body, it's this temple, all you're doing is saying I want to be a sprinter but I don't want to serve for the marathon because they tell us about 45 to 55, you're going to go down with a heart attack, man, or with colon cancer. And ladies, if you don't take care of yourselves, they tell us other stuff happens to you. And see, we got to start taking care of ourselves in such a quality way that we come to serve with overflow and energy and with some passion and with some zeal rather than, you know, gosh, you know, hope I get this done or praying right up to the edge, oh, we made it. And then you take a breather and then you go at it again.

Well, let's close it out with some evaluating questions. On the back it says where and how do I seek significance? I'd like to ask you to do a little meditation. Who are you trying to please?

Boy, that's a penetrating one. If you really want to find out where you're trying to find your significance, ask who are you trying to please? Who are you trying to impress?

Apostle Paul said if I, I wouldn't be a bondservant of Christ if I were still trying to please people. That'll, you get a hold of that, you'll get liberated. I've got a hold of it and lost it, a hold of it and lost it about a dozen times in my life. But ask and answer the question, where are you seeking your significance? Second question is how well am I serving? Where's your mindset under pressure? Under pressure, do you find yourself asking, ooh, how am I doing?

What's going on with me? Are you observant? Find yourself walking into a room looking for needs. Find yourself and your family asking, I wonder how my son or my daughter's feeling about this. I wonder how my parents are feeling. I wonder how my neighbor is.

I wonder how my boss is going. Are you looking for needs? Do you have the eyes? Do you listen intently?

The kind of person that people love to talk to because you listen and don't interrupt them? Do you anticipate needs? Do you use your mind and think ahead? Do little things matter to you? You know, just little things. Just, you know, little stuff. Just serving in little stuff, you know. Do you care who gets the credit? Think about that. Do you care?

I mean, sure you do. How wisely are you serving? When you look at your service right now, are you doing what no one else can do or no one else will do? Or do you have some strengths and some gifts that you could really exploit but you're so afraid, boy, I can't do that because of this and that. Does your service energize others and bring joy to your heart or is it a drag?

Are you serving out of overflow or are you serving under overload? What I love about this passage and this radical thinking about Jesus is you don't have to run a 4.340 to be great. You don't have to be able to hit a 98 mile per hour baseball to be great. You don't have to have the social skills and ability to be the CEO of a major corporation to be great. You don't have to have a lot of money to be great.

You know all you need? A servant's heart and availability. And just be you and say, God, you show me I'll do it. And if you'll do that, He says, you're number one. You're number one.

And you're great. And God's pleased with you. Chip will be right back with his application for this message, How to Become Number One in God's Eyes, from his series, Real Discipleship. In recent times, it seems like more and more Christians are falling into the traps of hypocrisy, scandal, and corruption.

So how can we change that? In this series, Chip reveals that it comes down to two words, real disciples. As he teaches through Mark chapter 6 through 10, he shares how we can authentically follow after Jesus and avoid the obstacles and distractions that so easily entangle us. Don't miss how genuine disciples of Christ can radically change our world.

For more information about our resources for this series, go to livingontheedge.org or the Chip Ingram app, or call 888-333-6006. As I come to the end of today's program, I just want you to know we also come to the end of the mid-year match. I am so grateful. It's been so amazing at how generous people have been. And I just know there's a lot of you that are like me that probably procrastinate a bit, and I just want to make sure you don't miss out. Thanks to some very generous donors.

Every dollar given up till midnight tonight is going to be double dollar for dollar. Thanks so much for praying, for turning those good intentions into actions. I'm so thrilled at what God is doing, what He's going to do. So let me encourage you, go online or make sure it's postmarked today, and we're going to press ahead. And by the grace of God in the midst of a world that is really hurting, the light and the love of Christ can make a difference, and we can do this together. Thank you for praying and doing whatever God leads you to do. If you'd like to join us, there's never been a better time than today. Thanks to a handful of donors, every gift we receive before midnight tonight will be doubled.

Regular mail needs to be postmarked before midnight. To be part of this mid-year match, just go to livingontheedge.org and click on the donate button, or give us a call at 888-333-6003. Again, that's 888-333-6003. App listeners, just tap donate. Thank you in advance for doing whatever the Lord leads you to do. Well, here again is Chip to share his application for today's message. As we wrap up this series, we've really been following Jesus on the road of discipleship. And we've begun sort of in the middle of the book of Mark, and He's walking these disciples past that point where they say, Who do you think that I am? On to, Do you know where I'm going? All the way to, Take up your cross and follow me. And so as we wrap things up, let me just ask some kind of big picture questions for you to process and begin to think about as you follow Him, because we're living in a day when it's never been more important.

I mean, I don't mean hyperbole. It's never been more important for disciples of Jesus Christ to be Christians who really live like Christians. And so let me ask you, are you empowering others? Are you a servant leader in your home? Are you a servant leader at school? What's your mindset? Are you the kind of person that is encouraging other people's faith? Are you concerned with kind of what everyone else thinks of you at work or school in your neighborhood?

Or are you more concerned about what Jesus thinks of you? I mean, all of us at some point, and maybe we don't verbalize it, but there is a king, there's a CEO, there's an authority in our life, there's an agenda that we have about, if we do X, Y, and Z, it will make us happy. And for some of us, it's actually ourself. And we've come up with the plan and we have the agenda.

And when we do that, we're focused on us, not Christ. And so let me ask you, is he the king? Is he the CEO?

Are you following him? And this isn't about a guilt trip. This is about, if you do life your way, the writer of Proverbs tells us the ending. There is a way that seems right to a man, but it ends in death. Jesus' goal, his desire, he so loves you. He so loves me that he wants the best for us. He that spared not his own son, but delivered him up for us all, how will he not freely give us all things? What I want you to hear is the heart of God. He doesn't want you to miss out, but you'll miss out if you follow your way and you'll never lose if you follow his way. May you be a Christian who lives like a Christian with all your warts and all your struggles just like I have mine.

But as we live authentically and radically and become real disciples, we'll never regret it. Great recap, Chip. Thanks.

Well, before we go, let me give you one last reminder about our mid-year match. So many of you have already been incredibly generous, and I just want to thank you for partnering with us. But if you haven't done that yet, up till midnight tonight, every gift we receive will be matched dollar for dollar. Your support helps us encourage Christians to live like Christians. If today's your day to join the team, just go to livingontheedge.org or give us a call at 888-333-6003. That's 888-333-6003 or go to livingontheedge.org. App listeners, tap donate, and thank you in advance for your generosity. Well, until next time, this is Dave Druey saying thanks for listening to this Edition of Living on the Edge.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-03-27 03:44:01 / 2023-03-27 03:54:19 / 10

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