September 23, Wednesday

NEW The AMI QT Devotional for today is provided Joe Suh who serves as a pastor intern at the Church of Southland (Anaheim, California).   

Devotional Thought for This Morning

“Give It All Away”

Philippians 2:3-11

Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves; 4 do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others. 5 Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus, 6 who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, 7 but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men. 8 Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. 9 For this reason also, God highly exalted Him, and bestowed on Him the name which is above every name, 10 so that at the name of Jesus every knee will bow, of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth, 11 and that every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

I recently read an article about Charles “Chuck” Feeney.  At the age of 89 he accomplished his life’s goal.  Mr. Feeney was a billionaire and co-founder of Duty Free Shoppers.  His life goal was to give away all his money to charity before he died.  His desire was to be broke by the time he passed.  Over the past four decades Mr. Feeney had donated over $8 billion dollars to charities, universities and foundations all around the world.  More astonishing is that he did so anonymously.  At no point did he want the recognition of donating to the charities.  This act earned him the nickname of the “James Bond of Philanthropy”.

I am not sure if Mr. Feeney is a believer or not, but his heart of giving is definitely impressive.  His thought was that he didn’t want to wait until he died to pass on his wealth because there were major problems now and they needed addressing.

In today’s passage we see Paul reminding us of what Mr. Feeney had done all his life.  To do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit.  To have humility and think of others before we think of ourselves.  Ultimately to look out for the interest of others before our own.  To serve others before we ourselves are served.

Mr. Feeney was a successful businessman and truly one of a kind when it came to his giving.  He was looking out for the interest of others and all the while remaining humble as he did so.  The fact that he gave anonymously for all those years is truly a testament to his humility.  

Paul uses the greatest person as his example in this passage.  He tells us to have the same attitude as Jesus when it comes to thinking of and serving others.  Jesus emptied Himself and became a man.  He humbled Himself to the point of death so that all of us would have life.  

Being a servant is more about “being” than it is about “doing”.  I think sometimes we tend to look for that one big experience where we can demonstrate our faithfulness to God, demonstrate our servanthood by giving of ourselves in some heroic fashion. But in reality that is not usually how it happens. In reality, it happens in the small, every day, somewhat uneventful occurrences of our lives.

This attitude, this mindset of serving others instead of being served, of giving rather than getting, of obeying rather than dominating is lived out in our day to day lives.  It is really about serving others, not because we have to, but because it is who we are.  We are able to live for something so much more.

If we truly follow the example of Jesus, our hearts will be full and we will do all we can to think of others before we think of ourselves.

Prayer: Heavenly Father, thank You giving us Your son Jesus as an example of what it is to serve others.  I pray that my heart and attitude would reflect what it is to selflessly give and serve others.  Give me opportunities to grow in this area of my life and really live it out as Jesus did.  Amen.

Bible Reading for Today: 2 Chronicles 19


Lunch Study Break

Read Romans 12:10-13 (NASB): Be devoted to one another in brotherly love; give preference to one another in honor; 11 not lagging behind in diligence, fervent in spirit, serving the Lord; 12 rejoicing in hope, persevering in tribulation, devoted to prayer, 13 contributing to the needs of the saints, practicing hospitality.

Questions to Consider

  1. To whom are we to be devoted and how are we to be devoted?
  2. Why does Paul exhort the people to love one another in brotherly love?
  3. How does this passage resonate with or convict your heart?

Notes

  1. We are to be devoted to one another.  This would mean everyone.  We are to be devoted in brotherly love (v.10). What is meant by brotherly love is a familial type of love—a love that is sacrificial, unconditional and real.
  2. As believers we are all members of God’s family.  Though we may not know each other, by virtue of our belief in God we are all family.  We are brothers and sisters in Christ.  So as members of one family we are called to love each other, to care for each other and pray for each other.  We are to give to each other and serve one another as best we can.
  3. Personal response. 

Evening Reflection

As you wind down from the day, take some time to pray through what it means to serve your fellow brothers and sisters.  Are you able to serve those you do not even know?  Can you give with humility and compassion?  As the Holy Spirit to reveal people that God may want you serve.

%d bloggers like this: