A Servant’s Attitude

Worship Service for June 13, 2021

WELCOME

Good morning, welcome and thanks for joining CrossPointe Community Church’s online worship presentation. As does the Apostle Paul in his letters to churches, I thank God for all of you and pray that as a result of participating today, you will draw closer to the Lord’s presence and grow more and more into His likeness.

ANNOUNCEMENTS

Our Trustees are hosting a Church Spiff-Up Day on Saturday morning, June 19th at 9 am. They are hopeful that a whole motley crew of people will show up with their ears pinned back, chomping at the bit to accomplish the list of items needing to be done. Just to tip you off, there’s some graffiti that needs to be removed from the woman’s restroom. One of our gals wrote, “My husband follows me everywhere.” Written underneath someone else, we don’t know who, wrote: “I do not.” More on this later.

CALL TO WORSHIP

“Don’t let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God, and trust also in Me. There is more than enough room in My Father’s home. If this were not so, would I have told you that I am going to prepare a place for you? When everything is ready, I will come and get you, so that you will always be with me where I am. And you know the way to where I am going.”
“No, we don’t know, Lord,” Thomas said. “We have no idea where you are going, so how can we know the way?”
Jesus told him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through Me. If you had really known Me, you would know who My Father is. From now on, you do know Him and have seen Him!”
Philip said, “Lord, show us the Father, and we will be satisfied.”
Jesus replied, “Have I been with you all this time, Philip, and yet you still don’t know who I am? Anyone who has seen Me has seen the Father!”

John 14:1-9a

OPENING WORSHIP SONGS

One Way

Douglass, Jonathon/Houston, Joel

I lay my life down at Your feet
Cause You’re the only one I need
I turn to You and You are always there.
In troubled times it’s You I seek
I put You first that’s all I need
I humble all I am all to You.

One way, Jesus
You’re the only one that I could live for.
One way, Jesus
You’re the only one that I could live for.

You are always, always there
Every how and everywhere
Your grace abounds so deeply within me
You will never ever change
Yesterday, today the same
Forever till forever meets no end.

One way, Jesus
You’re the only one that I could live for.
One way, Jesus
You’re the only one that I could live for.

One way, Jesus
You’re the only one that I could live for.
One way, Jesus
You’re the only one that I could live for.

You are the Way, the Truth, and the life
We live by faith and not by sight for You.
We’re living all for You.

You are the Way, the Truth, and the life
We live by faith and not by sight for You.
We’re living all for You.
You are the Way, the Truth, and the life
We live by faith and not by sight for You.
We’re living all for You.

You are the Way, the Truth, and the life
We live by faith and not by sight for You.
We’re living all for You.

One way, Jesus
You’re the only one that I could live for.
One way, Jesus
You’re the only one that I could live for.

One way, Jesus
You’re the only one that I could live for.
One way, Jesus
You’re the only one that I could live for.

One way, Jesus
You’re the only one that I could live for.
One way, Jesus
You’re the only one that I could live for.

One way, Jesus
You’re the only one that I could live for.
One way, Jesus
You’re the only one that I could live for.

©2003 Jonathon Douglass/Joel Houston/Hillsong Publishing
(admin. in the U.S. and Canada by Integrity’s Hosanna! Music)
CCLI License No. 1843349

Shout to the Lord

Zschech, Darlene

My Jesus, my Savior,
Lord there is none like You,
All of my days, I want to praise,
The wonders of Your mighty love.
My comfort, my shelter,
Tower of refuge and strength.
Let every breath, all that I am,
Never cease to worship You.

Shout to the Lord, all the earth let us sing,
Power and majesty, praise to the King.
Mountains bow down and the seas will roar
At the sound of Your name.
I sing for joy at the work of Your hands.
Forever I’ll love You, forever I’ll stand.
Nothing compares to the promise I have, in You.

My Jesus, my Savior,
Lord there is none like You,
All of my days, I want to praise,
The wonders of Your mighty love.
My comfort, my shelter,
Tower of refuge and strength.
Let every breath, all that I am,
Never cease to worship You.

Shout to the Lord, all the earth let us sing,
Power and majesty, praise to the King.
Mountains bow down and the seas will roar
At the sound of Your name.
I sing for joy at the work of Your hands.
Forever I’ll love You, forever I’ll stand.
Nothing compares to the promise I have,
Nothing compares to the promise I have,
Nothing compares to the promise I have… in You.

©1993 Darlene Zschech (Hillsong)
(Admin in U.S. & Canada by Integrity’s Hosanna! Music)
CCLI License No. 1843349

As We Seek Your Face

Bilbrough, Dave

As we seek Your face,
May we know Your heart,
Feel Your presence, acceptance,
As we seek Your face.

Move among us now.
Come reveal Your power.
Show Your presence, acceptance,
Move among us now.
At Your feet we fall,
Sov’reign Lord.
We cry, ‘Holy, holy’.
At Your feet we fall.

As we seek Your face,
May we know Your heart,
Feel Your presence, acceptance,
As we seek Your face.

©1990 Kingway’s Thankyou Music
(admin. by EMI Christian Music Publishing)
CCLI License No. 1843349

OPENING PRAYER

Eternal God, we are astonished that You, the Creator of the Universe, the Holy God, the One who is above all, in all and through all have revealed Yourself to us in Your Son Jesus. We are comforted by the reality He proclaimed; that He is the way, the truth and the life. And so, we gladly fall at Your feet to worship You, to adore You, to respect You, to humble all we are to You, in the name of Your dear Son, our Savior and Lord, Jesus, amen.

THE GIVING OF THE LORD’S OFFERING

For those of you who participate in the Lord’s offering by giving through the mail, our address is P. O. Box 126, Chippewa Lake, OH, 44215.

As we consider what it mean to give, hear this word of counsel from our friend, the Apostle Paul, who, in a letter to his fellow pastor Timothy, wrote:

Teach those who are rich in this world not to be proud and not to trust in their money, which is so unreliable. Their trust should be in God, who richly gives us all we need for our enjoyment. Tell them to use their money to do good. They should be rich in good works and generous to those in need, always being ready to share with others. By doing this they will be storing up their treasure as a good foundation for the future so that they may experience true life.

I Timothy 6:17-19

PRAYER SONG

Still

Morgan, Reuben

Hide me now… under Your wings.
Cover me, within Your mighty hand.
When the oceans rise and thunders roar,
I will soar with You above the storm.
Father, You are King over the flood.
I will be still…know You are God.

Find rest my soul…in Christ alone.
Know His power…in quietness and trust.
When the oceans rise and thunders roar,
I will soar with You above the storm.
Father, You are King over the flood.
I will be still…know You are God.

When the oceans rise and thunders roar,
I will soar with You above the storm.
Father, You are King over the flood.
I will be still…know You are God.
I will be still…know You are God.
I will be still…know You are God.

©2002 Reuben Morgan, Hillsong Publishing
CCLI License No. 1843349

MORNING PRAYER

Lindsay Brandenburg

Father, we are in awe of who you are. Even with our finite human understanding of your character, your creation speaks to our hearts of your glory, power, and love. You are the creator of the universe and yet you lavishly care for each of us as your children. What an unspeakable honor to be beloved children of the King.

But inevitably, we lose sight of who we are in you, and we forget to seek your face. We try to do things in our own power rather than yours and we fall short. We fail to act in love and miss opportunities to be your hands and feet in service to our fellow humans. Father, move us to repentance, to forgive and be forgiven. Remind us who we live for, Jesus, the way, the truth, and the life.

Thank you for your gathered church, especially for this family of brothers and sisters in Christ that we call CrossPointe Community Church. Thank you for your grace and your endless patience with us, gently moving us ever closer to you. We are blessed to be a blessing, strengthened by time with you in worship and prayer. Thank you for being our comfort and rest as we trust you to carry us above life’s storms.

Father, we ask for your blessing in our lives and in the life of our church. You have gifted us with talents and abilities, but we don’t want to simply do things in our strength and for our goals. We need your strength and guidance to accomplish your will in our lives and in the life of our church. Keep us connected to you, guided by your love, seeing with your eyes opportunities to humbly serve all of your beloved children. Help us to understand how we’ve been uniquely prepared to meet the need before us and give us the compassion and boldness to share your comfort and love with those we encounter. But most of all, help us to remember to be still, and know that you are God.

Amen

SERMON INTRODUCTION AND SCRIPTURE

Some of you may remember comedian Yakov Smirnoff. He said when he first came to the United States from Russia, he wasn’t prepared for the incredible variety of instant products available in American grocery stores. He says, “On my first shopping trip I saw powdered milk; you just add water, and presto-chango you get milk. Then I saw powdered orange juice; you just add water, and you get orange juice. And then I saw baby powder, and I thought to myself, ‘Is this a great country or what?’”

Wouldn’t it have been great if God would have made powdered Christlikeness? Just add the water of baptism and presto-chango just like Jesus!

But it doesn’t work that way, does it? To be sure, He has given us the Holy Spirit, but even with the Spirit’s help, it’s a life-long process of growing more like Jesus.

We’ve been talking about growing in Christlikeness in regards to serving like Jesus.

Two weeks ago, our text was from Matthew 20 where Jesus said,

Whoever wants to be a leader among you must be your servant. And whoever wants to be first among you must your slave. For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve others and to give His life as a ransom for many.

Matthew 20:26b-28

Last week we took a look at A Servant’s Mindset.

And so, dear brothers and sisters, I plead with you to give your bodies to God because of all He has done for you. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice the kind He will find acceptable. This is truly the way to worship Him. Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think.

Romans 12:1-2a

Today we are considering A Servant’s Attitude.

A servant’s attitude; one word: humility.

A servant’s attitude; one Bible Passage:

Before the Passover celebration, Jesus knew that His hour had come to leave this world and return to his Father. He had loved His disciples during His ministry on earth, and now He loved them to the very end. It was time for supper, and the devil had already prompted Judas, son of Simon Iscariot, to betray Jesus. Jesus knew that the Father had given Him authority over everything and that He had come from God and would return to God. So He got up from the table, took off His robe, wrapped a towel around His waist and poured water into a basin. Then He began to wash the disciples’ feet, drying them with the towel He had around Him.

When Jesus came to Simon Peter, Peter said to Him, “Lord, are you going to wash my feet?”
Jesus replied, “You don’t understand now what I am doing, but someday you will.”
“No,” Peter protested, “you will never ever wash my feet!”
Jesus replied, “Unless I wash you, you won’t belong to me.”
Simon Peter exclaimed, “Then wash my hands and head as well, Lord, not just my feet!”
Jesus replied, “A person who has bathed all over does not need to wash, except for the feet, to be entirely clean. And you disciples are clean, but not all of you.” For Jesus knew who would betray Him. That is what He meant when He said, “Not all of you are clean.”

After washing their feet, He put on His robe again and sat down and asked, “Do you understand what I was doing? You call me ‘Teacher’ and ‘Lord,’ and you are right, because that’s what I am. And since I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you ought to wash each other’s feet. I have given you an example to follow. Do as I have done to you. I tell you the truth, slaves are not greater than their master. Nor is the messenger more important than the one who sends the message. Now that you know these things, God will bless you for doing them.

John 13:1-17

The other text today adds to the already astonishing picture of God stooping so low:

Christ is the invisible image of the invisible God. He existed before anything was created and is supreme over all creation, for through Him God created everything in the heavenly realms and on earth. He made the things we can see and the things we can’t see; such as thrones, kingdoms, rulers, and authorities in the unseen world. Everything was created through Him and for Him. He existed before anything else, and He holds all creation together. Christ is also the head of the church, which is His body. He is the beginning, supreme over all who rise from the dead. So He is first in everything.

Colossians 1:15-18

SERMON

In that time and place where people walked in sandals down dusty roads and then reclined at low tables with their feet not far from the faces of the others it was customary for a servant to wash people’s feet as they entered a house. If the host couldn’t afford a foot-washing slave, the custom was that one of the first arriving guests would perform this task. Now as Jesus and His disciples gathered in the Upper Room to celebrate Passover there was no servant present.

Imagine, if you will, standing behind a pane of glass watching this scene unfold. The first disciple enters the room, maybe two of them and quickly discover there is no servant waiting to wash feet. Decision time; do they wash each other’s dirty feet? Look into their eyes; can you see them thinking, that’s not my job, I’m not a servant, I’m a follower of the Messiah. So they take a position around the table, dirty feet and all.

Just then a couple of more disciples enter, make the same observation, no foot washer, they check out the feet of the two already reclining, dirty. And so like sheep without a shepherd, they follow suit.

All of the disciples do likewise, completely ignoring the water basin and towel; not willing to humble themselves in order to serve, they plop down, dirty feet all.

Interesting to note that they were ready to fight for a kingdom, but not for a towel.

Finally the Lord enters the room, quickly sizes up the situation, you can see it in His eyes, three years, sermon after sermon, illustration after illustration, still they haven’t got it yet; a room full of proud hearts and dirty feet. He moves to the basin, takes off His outer robe, picks up the servant’s towel.

The entire scene emphasizes the humility of Jesus as the Creator of the universe stooping so low to serve those most undeserving disciples.

A servant’s attitude: humility.

It’s one thing to define humility. Merriman-Webster has it “Freedom from pride or arrogance.” 1

But what does humility look like? I’m going to offer eight pictures of humility. My goal is for us to think; to think about how we stack up against these eight descriptors of humility. I might take the time to explain some, while other will be hard-hitting one liners. I would suggest that we stop after each one to give it some though. And if we feel we fall short, we can ask the Lord to help us. So let’s get started.

  1. Humility is maintaining a realistic assessment of yourself.

Paul counsels the Romans: “Don’t think you are better than you really are” (12:3).

That’s not easy because scientific studies have consistently demonstrated that almost all people tend to think we are better than average (though this is statistically impossible) over a range of different measures. It might be we think we are smarter than the average bear; or better looking, or nicer, or a better Christina; you get the idea. 2

I recall in my undergrad days at Ohio State that a professor drew a circle on the board and said, “This circle represents your self-concept; who you think you are.” He then drew a second circle and suggested it represented how others see you and how they perceive you to be. He then pointed out that although there is some overlap between those circles, there is never alignment between how we see ourselves and how other see us. Then he drew a third circle that represented the truth of who we really are and noted that although that circle also has some overlap with the first two, there is never complete alignment.

That’s why I am reading the book I referred to last week; Insight. It is the author’s attempt to help the reader make a realistic appraisal of oneself. The author makes the point that most people are not very self-aware.

Obtaining a realistic appraisal of ourselves will help us comply with Paul’s counsel not to “think we are better than we really are.” And that we will help us be more humble.

Winston Churchill was once asked, “Doesn’t it thrill you to know that every time you make a speech, the hall is packed to overflowing?”
“It’s quite flattering,” replied Sir Winston, “But whenever I feel that way, I always remember that if instead of making a political speech I was being hanged, the crowd would be twice as big.” 3

There’s a fable about the donkey that carried Jesus on Palm Sunday waking up the next day still savoring the afterglow of the best day of his life. He had never felt so happy and proud. Wandering into the village of Bethany from whence he came, he saw some people buying a cart thought surely they’ll recognize me. But they continued haggling and paid no attention. “Don’t you know who I am?” But the people barely registered that he was there, and someone even slapped him on the backside, ordering him to move. “Miserable pagans!” muttered the donkey to himself. “I’m sure the people at the markets will remember me.” But when he got there the same thing happened. He strutted down the street, but no one paid any attention. “Yesterday you laid palm branches in front of me!” Upset and angry, the little donkey galloped home to his mother. “You foolish child,” she chided gently, “Don’t you understand that without Him, you are just an ordinary donkey?”

  1. Humility is thinking of others more important than ourselves.

Paul wrote the Philippians: “Don’t be selfish; don’t try to impress others. Be humble, thinking of others as better than yourselves” (2:3-4). Ralph Wald Emerson said: “A great man is always willing to be little.” 5

  1. Humility is putting the needs of others above your own.

For Paul continues, “Don’t look out only for your own interests, “but also for the interests of others too.” (Phil 2:4). Somebody said: ‘Never look down on anybody unless you’re helping them up.’

  1. Humility is not being too proud to say, “I was wrong.”
  2. Humility is finding a way to, as Paul counsels in Ephesians, “speak the truth in love” (Ephesians 4:15).

Speaking the truth in love is almost an art form. As illustrated by the new minister’s family who was presented with a pie by one of the congregation who was a rather poor cook. The pie was inedible, so the minister’s wife reluctantly threw it in the garbage. The preacher was then faced with the problem of thanking the woman, while at the same time, being truthful. After giving the matter much thought he sent the following note: “Dear Mrs. Jones, Thank you for being so kind and thoughtful. I can assure you that pie like yours never lasts long at our house.”

In the context in which it is written, Paul had in mind confronting people with the truth when people are straying from God’s ways. In that regard, there are many in America who need to hear the truth. But that’s a sermon that’s coming. Anyway, the key to speaking the truth in love is humility. It’s walking a mile in the other person’s shoes before speaking.

  1. Humility is not getting overly upset when someone offends you.

Paul writes, “And don’t sin by letting anger control you. Don’t let the sun go down while you are still angry, for anger gives a foothold to the devil” (Ephesians 4:26-27). In other words, the Bible acknowledges we are going to get angry when someone hurts us. But we are not nurture that hurt. We are, rather, to forgive.

When the pastor arrived at a parishioner’s house for dinner, the little girl informed him that her mama was cooking buzzard for dinner.
“No, Suzie,” her father corrected her, “We’re having chicken for dinner.”
“But daddy,” the daughter exclaimed, “I heard Mommy tell you we were having the old buzzard for dinner.”

Rather than be offended, this pastor who had been working on refining humility defused the potentially embarrassing situation by guffawing uncontrollably.

Of course, that wasn’t much of an offense. There are much worse things that people say and do to hurt us. Humility will remind us that we could have been the hurting person, and often have been, and that enables us better handle being offended.

  1. Humility is not getting defensive or looking to blame someone else when someone points out our deficiencies.

“The way of a fool is right in his own eyes, but a wise man listens to advice” (Proverbs 12:15).

  1. Humility is not waiting for someone else to do a job that you could handle, even if it is a so-called menial task, like washing someone else’s feet.

“You call Me teacher and Lord and you are right because that’s what I am. And since I, your Lord and teacher, have washed your feet, you ought to wash each other’s feet. I have given you an example to follow. Do as I have done to you. Now that you know these things, God will bless you for doing them” (John 13:13-15, 17).

A student in a Bible School in the Philippines became disturbed over the condition of the men’s restroom on his floor since they always seemed to be neglected in the cleaning routine. When nothing was done to eliminate the filth, he took matters into his own hands by complaining to the school’s principle. The next day he was pleased to notice that his complaint was being answered until the man with the mop and pail turned around and the student saw that it was his principal. In a book, the student wrote, “I thought sure he would call the janitor on the carpet but the principal cleaned the toilets himself. It was a major lesson to me on being a servant and raised the question in my own mind as to why I hadn’t taken care of the problem myself.”

Maybe because,

There’s a clever young guy named Somebody Else,
There’s nothing this guy can’t do.
He is busy from morning, till way late at night
Just substituting for you.
You’re asked to do this, or you’re asked to do that
And what is your ready reply?
Get Somebody Else to do that job, he’ll do it much better than I.
But the next time you’re asked to do something worthwhile,
just give this ready reply
If Somebody Else can give time and support, my goodness, so can I.”

When American Samuel Logan Brengle joined the Salvation Army, founder William Booth thought that Brengle had been his own boss for too long and, to help make him humble, told him to black the boots of the other trainees. Brengle wondered if he’d made a mistake if all he was able to do was clean boots. Then he saw a picture of Jesus washing the feet of fishermen and said, “Lord, You washed their feet; I will black their boots.” 6

Isn’t it ironic; to get higher up in the Kingdom of God requires stooping low.

Bruce Theilemann, pastor of First Presbyterian in Pittsburgh, tells of a most enlightening conversation he had with a parishioner. “You preachers sure talk a lot about serving others but simply all boils down to ‘basin theology.’
“Basin theology,” asked the pastor, “What’s that?”
“Do you remember what Pilate did when he had the chance to acquit Jesus? He called for a basin and washed his hands of the whole thing. And on the night before His death Jesus called for a basin and washed the feet of His disciples. It all comes down to basin theology; which basin will you choose?” 7

Ruth Calkin gets me to thinking which basin I would chose in a poem titled I Wonder.

You know, Lord, how I serve you;
with great emotional fervor in the limelight.
You know how eagerly I speak for You;
at the women’s club.
You know how I effervesce
when I promote a fellowship group.
You know my genuine enthusiasm
at a Bible study.
But how would I react, I wonder, if You pointed to a basin of water
and asked me to wash the calloused feet of a bent
and wrinkled old woman, day after day, month after month
in a room where nobody saw, and nobody knew?
I wonder. 8

CLOSING PRAYER

[Please pray as you feel God is directing you.]

CLOSING SONG

Meekness and Majesty

Kendrick, Graham

Meekness and majesty, Manhood and Deity,
In perfect harmony, the Man who is God.
Lord of eternity, dwells in humanity,
Kneels in humility and washes our feet.

O what a mystery, Meekness and majesty;
Bow down and worship….for this is your God.

Father’s pure radiance, perfect in innocence,
Yet learns obedience to death on a cross.
Suffering to give us life,
Conquering through sacrifice,
And as they crucify, prays, ‘Father, forgive.’

O what a mystery, Meekness and majesty;
Bow down and worship…for this is your God.

Wisdom unsearchable, God the invisible,
Love indestructible in frailty appears.
Lord of infinity, stooping so tenderly,
Lifts our humanity to the heights of His throne.

O what a mystery, Meekness and majesty;
Bow down and worship…for this is your God.

©1986 Kingsway’s Thankyou Music (admin. by EMI Christian Music Publishing)
CCLI License No. 1843349

BENEDICTION

Worthy is the Lamb who was slain, to receive power and wealth and wisdom and might and honor and glory and blessing! …To Him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb be blessing and honor and glory and might forever and ever!

Revelation 5:12, 13

1 www.merriman-webster.com

2 The Superiority Illusion: Where Everyone Is Above Average, Scientific American, April 5, 2013.

3 Norman McGowan, My Years with Winston Churchill, Souvenir Press, London.
https://bible.org/node/10552

4 Only a Donkey
www.sermonsearch.com

5 www.goodreads.com quotes 243

6 www.bible.org

7 www.sermoncentral.com

8 Our Daily Bread, July 1, 1994

Randy K'Meyer

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