Deniliquin Pastoral Times

Find happiness serving others

- ~ Contribute­d by Archdeacon Wayne Sheean of St Paul’s Anglican Church, on behalf of the Combined Churches of Deniliquin.

Many people have been and still are avid viewers of Downtown Abbey, the TV series and the movie that depicts 19th and early 20th century life in house and estate of an English nobleman, and the relationsh­ip between them upstairs and them downstairs.

We might think that the idea of having servants to look after every need of the aristocrac­y is an abominatio­n and so out of date, yet when you look at the lives of the servants in this series you see, for the most part, people who are happy with the life of service to this family and proud of the work they do.

Of course this was not always the case in every household, but even today we read of people who are happy and settled in their service to others, be it in a household or in the significan­t loving care of those in hospital, hospice, aged care and home care.

Servanthoo­d should never be considered slavery, and in the Gospel of St Mark chapter 10: 35-45 and in St Matthews Gospel chapter 20: 20-28, Jesus teaches that real servanthoo­d is done out of love and care and not seeking to put ourselves before or above other people.

The exalted position that brothers James and John are seeking is not something that anyone can demand.

We need to be humble in the presence of God to enter into the Kingdom prepared for us.

Jesus Himself came into this world as a humble baby and that humility was evident throughout His life, most significan­tly and lovingly in His passion, suffering and death on the cross.

I believe that our society and world can be a better place when self-interest is put aside for the good of others.

Let us pray that God’s grace will guide us to be happy, settled and fulfilled in our service to Him and to all people.

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