What does it really mean to serve?

Twice a month I serve with the band at Friends Community Church. On one Sunday I play drums and on the other I run sound.

Drumming is my favorite of the two activities and I was disappointed recently when the Worship Leader, Josh, asked me to run sound on a week I was expecting to play drums.

My disappointment made it clear to me that I liked the idea of serving, but mostly wanted to “serve” in the way that I enjoyed the most.

The hoops Josh has to jump through to get half a dozen (or more) volunteers to spend close to 10 hours of their week rehearsing and performing with the band are significant and I wasn’t doing him any favors by moping about not getting to “serve” in my preferred role.

I apologized and let him know that, while drumming was my very favorite, I wanted to be of service and would be glad to fill whichever role was most helpful to him.

It turns out serving is about helping others, not about helping me.

I may be alone in my conflicted relationship with service, but probably not. Have you ever turned serving others into a selfish pursuit?