My phone rang unexpectedly. I looked down and saw it was a friend I hadn’t talked to in months. “Hello?” I answered, wondering the reason behind her call. “Hey! How are you?” She said. We exchanged pleasantries for a few minutes before the purpose of her call came out.
“So I’m calling because I saw you were moving.”
Oh yes. Moving. It had been a whirlwind. What started as casually looking at open houses with my husband and children ended in us buying a new house and selling our old house in a matter of seven days. To top it all off, we had only a handful of weeks to move out. I was still wrapping my head around this sudden change in our lives when I posted the update on social media, so friends and acquaintances could know the news.
“I’d love to bring you a meal during this busy time.” My friend continued, interrupting my thoughts.
I was blown away by her offer. You see, this friend has four kids (like me), a new baby (like me), and homeschools (like me). Having a similar life to hers, I knew how busy she must be. I knew how her time was accounted for and that her to-do list was probably longer than the hours in the day. But that didn’t stop her from looking beyond herself, from seeing a distant friend go through an unexpected life change and deciding to make the choice to serve her in a tangible way.
It’s easy to get caught up in the busyness of life and miss opportunities to serve others, especially those outside of my close circle of family and friends. I know I’m supposed to serve like Jesus, who did good to everyone (Galatians 6:10). I know I should not only look out for my own interests but also the interests of others (Philippians 2:11). I know whoever wants to be the greatest must become a servant (Matthew 23:11). But somehow these truths easily get clouded out by the immediate needs and busyness of life and motherhood.
My friend knew these truths from scripture. And she acted on them, even though...
*Serving is usually inconvenient. I’m sure my friend had plenty of other things to do.
*Serving is usually costly. I’m sure she could have spent her money on something other than a meal for a family of six.
*Serving requires you to look beyond yourself and your immediate circle of influence.
My friend had plenty of other people that she saw more regularly that she could have given her time and energy to. But she looked beyond her closer relationships, saw a need in my life during an especially busy time, and chose to meet that need.
That day my friend called me will always be the day my eyes were opened more fully to what it means to serve like Jesus. And now I too am on the lookout for ways to unexpectedly surprise others with acts of service. Just like my friend did. Just like Jesus did.
“For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.” Mark 10:45
*Photo credit Nathan Mullet from Unsplash
Julie Parido is a follower of Jesus Christ, wife to Mike, and homeschooling mom to 4 kids ages 8 and under. Combining her biblical education and love for motherhood, she is currently writing a scripture memory and application book for parents and children, which is expected to be released around Christmas 2021. In her spare time, Julie enjoys playing games with her kids and date nights with her husband. She can be found at her website, www. julieparido.wixsite.com, and on Instagram @julieParido.