When we serve those around us, we ourselves find hope as we help others find hope too.
Ephesians 2:10 (NIV)
For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.
Activity: Society's Servants
Who are “Society’s Servants”? People in the “service industry” work in hotels, restaurants, fast food chains and retail stores, and as stylists, maids, janitors and cleaners. “Civil servants” hold jobs that help the public such as teachers, nurses, social workers, police officers and fire fighters.
For this activity, everyone in the group should name a job that could be considered a “Servant of Society”: either the role of someone who works in the service industry or as a civil servant. Then go around the group and answer these questions about those jobs (as time allows):
- How does that person or job serve our society?
- What would society look like if that job didn’t exist anymore?
Example: Garbage Collector
- Garbage collectors serve us by coming around and picking up our trash each week.
- If there were no garbage collectors, the trash would just pile up week after week. Then, we’d all have to take time out of our week to haul our trash to the dump ourselves!
Debrief of Activity
We often think of servants as being in a low position: they work for someone else or they work in jobs behind-the-scenes. But without these servants of society, life would look pretty hopeless! We depend on them more than we realize, and we need to pay attention to how their acts of service bring us hope and joy each day. How can we show our appreciation to Society’s Servants?
- Would you rather serve someone else or be served by someone?
- Tell about a time when someone went out of their way to do something kind for you. How did that make you feel?
- Now, share about when you served or helped someone else. How did serving someone else make you feel?
- Do you feel like you have a purpose or a reason for being created? If so, what is it?
- Read together our Main Scripture from Ephesians 2:10. Is it easy or hard to believe that you are God’s handiwork and special creation?
- According to this verse, for what purpose or reason did God create us?
- In what ways did Jesus model how we are supposed to serve one another?
- How can helping others or serving change our attitudes or give us different perspective? How does serving give us hope?
- What good works can you do this week for those in your life or others around you?
This week go out of your way to serve others in your life. Make it a game! See if you can out-do yourself in serving. Can you wash the dishes or unload the dishwasher before your parents get to it? Are you able to throw your sister’s dirty clothes in with your load of laundry? Do all the chores on your list AND your brother’s list too! Cook a meal for your family or bake a sweet treat for your neighbors. Volunteer to wake up early and take the dog outside. Maybe you can even mow your neighbor’s yard or weed their flower bed. When you look for small ways to serve others, you’ll be surprised to find all the things you can do to help. Serving others also takes our minds off our own problems and worries, giving you hope and joy as you bring hope and joy to those around you!
Leaders, share about a time when serving someone else gave you a change of perspective or attitude, perhaps on a mission trip or a service project to an inner-city rescue mission or cleaning up after a natural disaster. Often, those with the most hope and joy are people who seem to have fewer material possessions or who have lost everything they have. Many times when we serve others, the hope we receive comes from the people around us—whether it’s from our fellow co-servers or the people we have come to serve. Hope comes not so much in the act of serving, but in the community of people we are serving alongside.