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Ah Life!

“For even the Son of Man did not come to be served,
but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many.”
Mark 10:45

Flora — the world of plants. There are myriad little blades of grasses and just as many plants! Their mission in life is to give — for nourishment, for strength, for comfort and for beauty. They make no demands — they exist for others. God created them for that purpose.

There are unnumbered wildflowers, giving forth beauty and sweetness and fragrance perhaps in places where no eye will ever see them — no onlooker ever appreciate them — ready to be trampled down and broken or to bloom their whole life without praise. They bloom where they are planted for the sheer joy of blooming.

Trees. They give without prejudice. They bear fruit. They shelter. They bring comfort and relief from the elements with their shade. They bring beauty to an otherwise barren earth. Could we say that they lift their “leafy” arms to praise God — living with purpose where He planted them? Giving as they were created to give?

Brooks, streams, waterfalls. They start at the heights and cascade carelessly, joyously down, ever going lower and lower, giving of themselves to refresh, to heal, to cause growth, to cleanse, to bring beauty.

Fauna — the world of animals. This is a higher form of life. They have the innate ability to respond to their world. God created them to portray His majesty, His creativity, His authority, and His love. Look at the dog. Oh, he does respond to love and has a fierce loyalty to his master. He loves unconditionally. He doesn’t care what his master looks like, his clothes, the color of his skin, or where he lives. He will protect his master and give his own life if necessary to stand between him and any evil. The greater the love that is given to that creature, the greater is his desire to give in return.

There is the sun. It sheds its light and its warmth freely on everyone — the just and the unjust — the evil and the good — lighting and warming dark places. It is the epitome of giving: Self-giving, self-sharing — in common bond with all who will open themselves to its light and warmth.

And then there is unregenerate man.

Where is the spontaneous self-giving of creation?

Where is the desire to bring loveliness to the world through giving?

Where are the unconditional love and the fierce loyalty that the dog gives?

Is it in there somewhere? Yes.

There is “regeneration” — the highest form of Life! And after the miracle of regeneration we begin to feel a stirring within, realizing that it is “so happy” to love, even if one is not loved in return. There is a loyalty that will suffer martyrdom. That Christ-love within the new man will express itself in compassion and giving just as He did when He walked the dirty paths of Galilee — giving, always giving. He gave of Himself to nourish, to comfort, to beautify for the joy of giving. He serves, unappreciated, with no praise, for the joy of serving. He exists to glorify God and has a common bond with all who will but receive — loving the just and the unjust, shedding light in the darkness.

As new creatures in Christ that self-giving Life is ours — it is within us! But we very often strangle that life — we tie the hands that want to reach out in love — we refuse to lift our arms to hug or to praise — we imprison Him in our selfish, lifeless clay cells — living in solitary confinement as we refuse to acknowledge His indwelling presence, His love, His power, and His compassion.

Lord, may we see that we exist to glorify You — we were created for that purpose — to glorify You!

Therefore, what will do that most effectively will be the path You will choose for me. It might be in unappreciated, unknown places, trampled on and broken or perhaps to bloom our entire life with no praise. May we give with no thought of return. May we make our part of the world lovely just because of Your presence living through us. Oh, but help us to remember, dear Lord, that You view our giving and You say, “You are doing a marvelous job, dear one. You are a wonderful servant.”

Servant (n): one employed by another; one devoted to another

About the Author

Anabel spent decades teaching in many contexts through Lifetime Guarantee Ministries. She has taught countless others how to have a genuine intimate faith and a sound marriage. She shared from her heart about living from the heart. Lifetime’s beloved founder and mentor passed away November 7, 2010. Her legacy and influence are timeless and priceless.