April 21st 2009

A Lifetime Of Service

“Whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be your slave–just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”
Matthew 20:26-28 (NIV)

Deborah, Rebekah’s nurse, is mentioned twice in the bible and only once by name. Her name Deborah means “a bee”, which gives an indication of her character. We all know how busy and hard working bees are.

Genesis 24:59 tells us she began in Nahor’s household and went with Rebekah when she went to marry Isaac. After a child grows, the nurse remains as a servant. She spent her entire life (probably over 100 years) in working for other people, nursing other people’s children. She was an unselfish, caring person.

She would have known Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, as well as Jacob’s children. She lived through three generations of patriarchs and must have known them intimately. She must have seen how God was working with them at that time.

Her death was an occasion of great sorrow (Genesis 35:8). They called the place they buried her the Oak of Weeping.

She gave her life in service to others – totally unselfish – esteemed others better than herself. We as Christians are admonished to esteem others, and live a life of Service. I Timothy 4:12 says, Set an example for the believers in speech, in life, in love, in faith, and in purity.”

Service begins in small ways–in physical work behind the scenes. There are opportunities all around if we can only see them. It involves sacrifice and never stops.

Father, thank you for giving us the example of Deborah. Please help me to be a busy bee like she was and take hold of the opportunities all around me.

Study by Jill Newman 

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