I've always been envious of those who happily serve others. Wives and mothers who get joy out of serving their families, catering to their husband's needs and the needs of their children. Happy homemakers who feel a sense of accomplishment. Folks who happily serve on school and church committees. Those who volunteer their time to others out of the sheer joy of being in service to another.
When I served on a church committee, it was more a sense of obligation rather than service, and I would sit in the meetings willing for the time to fly by so I could be in the comforts of my own home. Or I would get annoyed at someone droning on and on in the meeting about what I felt was nonsense. I care more about my own needs than the needs of others.
When I served on fund-raising committees at schools, I never felt a sense of accomplishment, I just felt like, "Oh, hurry up and get this over with!"
The only volunteering I enjoyed was working with children. They were a lot of fun, I laughed a lot, I loved them and they loved me. But that entailed me getting something out of it. Certainly not a servant's heart there.
I never feel that wonderful sense of love and service. I try to, but most of what I do, I just do out of a sense of obligation or guilt. I've prayed about it. I want to have a servant's heart, but I just don't get that sense of happiness or fulfillment that others feel and talk about.
And so far in my life, I've only known one other person who feels the same way I do. We just don't get it. I don't feel like we're cold-hearted people, but maybe we are.
We both get annoyed if we are trying to be of service to someone and things don't go smoothly. We don't mind whatever the chore may be, but we mind that a one-step chore becomes a ten-step chore due to things going awry (for example: trying to bake a dinner to take to a family in need, but everything goes wrong such as a carton of eggs falling on the floor and every single egg breaks, or the dinner burns to a crisp; or in trying to help someone paint their house and you knock over the whole can of paint onto their carpet), we end up saying to ourselves and to God, "What is this???? All I'm trying to do is help someone out here. Why all the roadblocks?"
She and I are more like 'grumbling servants'. And we both agree that we are all-too-ready to throw in the towel.
I wish I was the type of person who could say, "Okay, God, for whatever reason all those eggs were supposed to break, and that dinner was supposed to burn, and I was supposed to knock the paint over." I wish I was the type of person who felt there was some deep lesson I was supposed to learn. I'm not that type of person. If there was a lesson to be learned, it went sailing way over my head.
And, really, my feeling is, sometimes broken eggs are just broken eggs, and sometimes paint spilled is nothing more than paint spilled. And it's all very irritating. And there is no sense of a servant's heart in irritation.
"It's all in your attitude", or so I've been told. But I don't feel that I go into any mission with a negative attitude, in fact, I think my attitude is somewhat rational, I don't think I have high expectations, and yet, I still feel disappointed with the outcome (not feeling good about having done something in the service of another). What's wrong with me? Why don't I feel good doing something for somebody else? Does everything I do have to benefit me before I feel good about it? I'm not getting any younger. I'm running out of time. How am I ever going to acquire a servant's heart?
5 weeks ago