Timothy and Epaphroditus were two average people. One of them was timid, the other one was sick. They were just ordinary people, yet they made a difference. Paul listed 26 people by name in Romans 16. They all loved God; they all loved Paul. Yet only two came through. Maybe their schedules got in the way. They may have been too busy. Maybe they had other concerns. Perhaps they were too ambitious. They ended up letting Paul down. They were more interested in their own affairs than in what matters to Jesus Christ. The difference with Timothy and Epaphroditus wasn’t ability. It was their willingness to be servants. Everyday servants have convictions. Here they are:
My life isn’t about me. It’s about what Jesus is doing. Everyday servants don’t live for themselves. When you think about, living for yourself is a pathetic way to live. It’s shallow. Everyday servants agree with what Paul said in Acts 20:24: “But my life is worth nothing unless I use it for doing the work assigned me by the Lord Jesus—the work of telling others the Good News about God’s wonderful kindness and love.”
The greatest contribution I will make with my life is how I prove myself in consistently serving others, even (especially) during hardship. It’s not about me. It’s about others, and how I can serve them. Even Jesus didn’t come to serve, but to serve others. We get to give up our concern over our own interests and priorities in order to be concerned about serving Christ and others. “For everyone looks out for his own interests, not those of Jesus Christ” (Phil. 2:21).
God uses ordinary people when they make a radical, risky commitment to live for a higher purpose. An example is D.L. Moody. He wasn’t average. He was below average. He was a shoemaker. His education was poor. The first time he applied for church membership, he failed. Not many people fail when they apply to join a church, but he didn’t know enough. There was nothing extraordinary about him.
One day he heard a preacher, Henry Varley, say these words: “The world has yet to see what God can do with and for and through and in a man [an ordinary person] who is wholly consecrated to him.” Moody thought, “What if I were that man?” He lived the rest of his life, and touched thousands of people for eternity, because he was an ordinary person who made a radical, risky commitment to live for a higher purpose.
I wish you could see what God could do with and for and through and in you – not because you’re extraordinary, any more than all of us are extraordinary. I wish you could see the impact that God wants to have with your life, because you, like Timothy and Epaphroditus, become ordinary people who follow the example of Jesus Christ, and take upon yourself the form of a servant, and begin to serve others – right where you are, with what you’re doing right now. (DARRYL DASH)