I am a people watcher. I observe, listen and learn from the people around me. Growing up, all of the women in my life–my mom, aunts, and ladies at church–showed me examples of serving others. These women put the other people in their life first before they took care of themselves. Their personalities were caring and gracious with a willingness to serve. They say you learn best from others’ examples and I took all I gleaned from these ladies and became the loving, serving person they modeled. I took on the personality of taking care of other’s needs before my own. You might be asking yourself right now what is wrong with that?
When you lose sight of who you are to serve others, you miss out on how others can care for you. Many times people delight in being the one to do something nice and you have taken that blessing away from them. I look at my grown up self and still believe that my purpose is to take care of others first before I take care of myself. I miss out on how those around me can fill me and as a result become “care-full”.
God did not choose us to work so hard we wear out in the doing. He chose us to balance what we need with taking care and loving others. I am learning this lesson, but still have a long way to go. Just recently, I shared that I want to pursue my dreams. Almost as soon as I said that, I felt selfish for even thinking it. God creates us to need care from others. He desires for us to embrace a care-full attitude. For me, it’s going to take more time and a letting go of some things or people I think I need to continue to put first at the exception of myself. I’m honestly quivering over here at taking this step.
The fifth beatitude is speaking into the place inside me that believes that I should always serve others first even at the expense of caring for myself. It says:
You’re blessed when you care. At the moment of being ‘care-full,’ you find yourselves cared for. Matthew 5:7 MSG
If we never fill ourselves up after a continual emptying of love, grace, and servitude, our well runs dry. How will we continue to have what is needed to give to others when even the overflow is empty? Can we maintain a stance of serving others first without caring for ourselves?
I love this beatitude and to be honest it is kicking me in the gut. God is showing me how important it is to be there for others. He is also pointing me to the truth that until I am care-full, I miss that I am cared for. Wow! I need to read this over and over. Pressing pause on how I usually approach this beatitude will give me the chance to catch up with the truth of what God is saying.
My mom taught me well and serving your family is important. But praying and dreaming for your plans to align with God’s does not take away from caring for others. When we know we are cared for, we have so much more to give. The times we step back and make room for God to fill us creates a space for Him to reside. When God lives in us, His Spirit provides the strength, hope, and wisdom we need to be there for others and ourselves.
May the truth of who God is along with how He loves us enough to fill us to overflowing, remain in your hearts this week. Press pause if needed and remind yourself that you are blessed when you are care-full.
Re-fueling to fill others,
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