When we think of serving, we often think of missions in far off places with grueling surroundings. Serving at its core, however, is simply being useful. We don’t need to be in any particular place or doing any particular thing. We need to be useful wherever we are.
Service to your Family
Our usefulness starts at home. It wasn’t just a coincidence that honoring your father and your mother was a part of the original ten commandments God gave to His children. Service to the world at large is wonderful, but falls short if you aren’t useful to the family God put you in.
Service to your Church
The next family God put you in is a church family. Being helpful to your church family is the next place to focus on being useful. Community is vital to a healthy life and supporting our community is how we can contribute to the health of our immediate surroundings. The church is there to help protect and serve others that we can’t reach on our own or who don’t have a family to help them. Serving at our church is the best way we have to create a connected environment for everyone.
Service to your Neighborhood
The phrase, “Location, location, location!” is usually referring to real estate and the prime locations that go for lots of money. Our location, where we live and where we spend our time, impacts our friendships and relationships. Being useful in our neighborhood allows us to connect and support the people we spend the most time around.
It is good to support friends and family that live far away; however, supporting those in our immediate surroundings help us build strong connections that return and support us when we are in need.
Service to the World
After our local connections, we can offer support to the world. This is usually done by connecting with a large mission or service organization that allows us to contribute to causes around the world. Sometimes this is in person with skills or labor, but often this is with money.
We can feel connected with others at a global level when we offer this kind of service. Seeing the goodness and blessings that are being worked out all over the planet can help us remember how big God’s power and plan are.
It is important to remember, though, that this kind of service isn’t a replacement for being involved locally. God put us where we are for a reason of His own; let’s build up our community within the circles of people that God has placed us in.