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“‘Whoever serves me must follow me; and where I am, my servant also will be.  My Father will honor the one who serves me.'”  (John 12:26, NIV)

To serve Jesus is to follow Jesus. To follow Jesus is to be with Jesus.

It is not possible to truly serve Jesus without also following Him.  If our service consists only of isolated acts — even sacrificial isolated acts — without a commitment to also go where He goes; and to do as He directs; that service is deficient.

To be a true servant of Jesus is to voluntarily subordinate our will to the will of the One being served.  This type of service cannot be rendered at a distance.  It is intimate.  It is persistent.  – Luther

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“But Rehoboam rejected the advice the elders gave him and consulted the young men who had grown up with him and were serving him.”  (2 Chronicles 10:8, NIV)

The passage of time and the limits of my personal scholarship make it difficult to know precisely why Rehoboam rejected the counsel of the men who had served his father Solomon when Solomon was king; but I suspect that it was what the Bible calls the “pride of life” that led Rehoboam to instead consult his contemporaries.

The bible is an old book that challenges our ways.  The traditions of the faithful are tested, but weathered and too-familiar.  The counsel of the ages often seems way out of step with what is being promoted as the latest and the greatest discovery.

We prefer new to old.  We choose fashion over substance.  We do, as Rehoboam did: We reject the advice that established the ways of our successful predecessors for the advice of those who are more like us in our preferences.

When tempted to make changes for the sake of establishing our independence; or for raising our profile; we should call a time-out.  Is the course we have chosen reflective of the “pride of life,” or something much, much better?  – Luther

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“Jesus said to her, ‘I am the resurrection and the life.  The one who believes in me will live, even though they die; and whoever lives by believing in me will never die.  Do you believe this?’”  (John 11:25-26, NIV)

The world as we know it “whistles through the graveyard”; that is, it ignores all evidence that we, too, shall die.

Our Lord offers us the only hope of life through death.  He, alone, is the resurrection and the life.

Our Lord’s question: “Do you believe this,” is the litmus test.  To answer in the affirmative does not keep us out of the graveyard but, because of Jesus, the graveyard for the believer, becomes a passageway, not a destination.

Live each day as one going from life to life.  – Luther

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