Often, at the end of a Sunday morning service, I pray that as we go into the week ahead, we would “love and serve” Jesus well. It’s a reminder that believers are always acting as ambassadors of the Kingdom when outside the church. Wherever we happen to find ourselves during the week, we need to love and serve Jesus. What does that look like? It has a lot to do with how we love others.
- Treat everyone with respect. Remember that everyone you meet is made in the image of God. I know there are many unpleasant people out there. I am aware that not everyone will like you or care for you. Some of the things that people say and do are problematic. God loves the whole world, and that includes the people you interact with every day. Each person has a story and should be treated with respect and dignity. Christians need to show kindness. “Respect everyone, and love your Christian brothers and sisters. Fear God, and respect the king.” (1 Peter 2:17)
- Whatever your job, work hard at it. I worked one summer with a guy who had a laid-back work ethic. He was lazy. Everyone else had to finish their duties and we could never find him when needed. It was kind of embarrassing because he and I went to the same church. His poor work habits raised questions about our faith and beliefs. Being a poor worker has always been a poor witness. Ephesians 6:7 says, “Serve wholeheartedly, as if you were serving the Lord, not men.”
- Watch your words. The tongue can be used to build people up or tear people down. We’ve all been around those who gossip, back-bite, swear or make rude comments. Negativity is an affliction in our society. The words we use often reflect what is happening in our hearts, so speak positively about others and offer words of encouragement. We can acknowledge difficult people and circumstances without being negative ourselves. “Don’t use foul or abusive language. Let everything you say be good and helpful, so that your words will be an encouragement to those who hear them.” (Ephesians 4:29)
Loving and serving Jesus takes many forms throughout the week. Our interaction with other people serves to remind us that we represent him.