Friday, May 7, 2021

Cultivating a Servant Attitude


BySarah Geringer 

In the same way, when you obey me you should say, ‘We are unworthy servants who have simply done our duty.’”

Luke 17:10 NLT

Though I've been a Christian since birth, I can't recall hearing a sermon preached on this passage before. Yet it spoke to me this week in my Bible reading, and I want to explore it with you today.

This teaching immediately follows a familiar one: having faith the size of a mustard seed (Luke 17:6). Jesus responded with this famous teaching after the disciples asked, "Show us how to increase our faith" (Luke 17:5).

To expand on what God sees as true faith, Jesus tells another story. He tells the story of a servant, coming in from working in the fields all day. The servant's master does not say, "Come and eat with me." Instead, the master expects the servant to prepare his meal, put on an apron, and serve him, then the servant can eat his own meal later. The master does not even thank the servant for what he does - Jesus says, "of course not," because this would not be done in his culture.

This is known as the parable of the unworthy servant. To our contemporary eyes and ears, this story may seem harsh or unfair. But let's try to look at it in a contemporary context.

What if you were asked to serve a meal for a king or queen? What attitude would you have? Let's say the dignitary was arriving after a busy day of work for you. Would you complain or grumble, or would you simply be overjoyed to serve this person? Would you demand a seat at the table and expect praise, or would you just be glad they graced your home with their presence? I think most of us would feel like servants who did our duty if we had the privilege of hosting a king or queen in our home.

Jesus is using this parable to teach his disciples about the necessity of humility. We need to revere God as the masterful Creator, King, Priest and Savior he is. The attitude he seeks from us is humility. We should not be keeping tabs of what we do for God to earn his favor. Nor should we complain and grumble if he asks us to serve someone else in his name, even if we have worked hard all day. Always, we need to remember we worship the Lord of Heaven's Armies, not a god who serves us.

Isn't it also wonderful to know that alongside the truth in this parable, God invites us in? In Revelation 2:3, we read:

“Look! I stand at the door and knock. If you hear my voice and open the door, I will come in, and we will share a meal together as friends."

The God we worship, the Lord Most High, also draws near to us. We don't deserve his favor, yet he lavishes it on us and considers us his friends. As you meditate on this truth, may it help you cultivate a servant attitude in your heart. Serve Jesus because you love him, not because you expect anything in return. But in return, he will give you the gift of his warm, loving presence. What a Savior!

Check out another post on cultivating a servant attitude HERE.

If you enjoyed this post, please share on your favorite social media site using the buttons below.

Have a blessed weekend!

Photo from


  1. Thanks Sarah, this is an good lesson for me.

    1. Glad this blessed you, Aritha! God's peace to you.


Thank you for stopping by, we love hearing from you. Please feel free to contact us with any prayer requests or questions by commenting below or emailing us at the About Us page.