Rise to greatness by stooping to serve

Published 2:00 pm Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Hospital food normally gets a big “yuck!” from patients. Sometimes they’re right. But in some cases that’s a bad rap. Illness and medications can affect hunger and taste.

UAB aims to counter the hospital food “yuck!” factor. The hospital now offers “order off the menu room service” to patients. No more “take or leave it” meals. No more “eat on our schedule not yours” tray deliveries.

The patient menu includes roast beef, pizza, cheeseburgers, veggies and the like. All made to order when you want it. Makes you yearn for gallbladder surgery, right?

Most people like to be pampered, especially when they’re sick. So UAB may be on to something.

Do you know believers who expect personalized, pampered service from their church? Although both hospital and church are service oriented, great differences exist in the focus.

People go to the hospital to be served. Believers become a part of the church to serve.

Jesus made that point when He addressed a spat among the disciples. They jockeyed with each other about which of them would be greatest in Jesus’ kingdom. Jesus chided, “Whoever wishes to be great among you shall be your servant. . . . The Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve.” (Mark 10:43,45)

Jesus elevated service given above service received. Sure, it’s nice to be pampered from time to time. But it’s not a benefit of the Christian life. On the contrary, serving God by serving other people may be costly or inconvenient.

So put on your apron. Rise to greatness by stooping to serve.

The Rev. Darryl Wood is pastor of the First Baptist Church of Vincent.