Striving to serve

Published 10:20 pm Monday, June 3, 2019

By Joseph Perry

Are you serving and living for God without making excuses?

Nothing that has happened in our lives should ever cause us to make excuses not to serve God with a spirit of excellence.

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I remember when I first got my first bike for Christmas. I remember when I loaded a pellet gun with shot gun shells, and how my father blessed me with a real gun that night when he got home from work. I remember when I finished seminary, and then I remember when I got married, and then my girls were born.

But, I also remember how I felt the day my grandma died. I remember when special family and friends departed my life and went on to glory.

Some things have brought us joy in our lives, and some things have brought us anxiety. But whatever has taken place, good or bad, it should not ever cause us to make excuses to keep from serving God and living for God with a spirit of excellence.

Sometimes we have let people, places and things come between us and God. We have allowed events to come in our lives and slow us down at times and even to a halt. Some things have caused us not to continue what God has called us to do.

Isaiah said, in the year king Uzziah died, I saw the Lord. Isaiah sees the Lord during this great time of suffering and mourning. He saw God in all of His holiness. He saw Him in all of His splendor and awesomeness. He saw the Lord when troubles and trials were before him; when life was hard, and it seemed like nothing was working; everything seemed to have collapsed; the struggles of life were overtaking him.

Some things happen in our lives at times that will cause us to see the Lord. It’s like we never saw Him the way we see Him at that time. He allows things to happen to us and around us so we can see Him. And the truth of the matter is, we all need to see Him in a sense. We all need to have our attention turned to Him, and what He desires of us, before He returns for us. How He does it is so mysterious and so unusual at times, but when it happens, it has the ability to change our whole lives. It cause us to want to:

  • See more of Him. We want more of Him in our lives.
  • Say more to Him. We want to communicate each day with a closer relationship.
  • Serve more for Him. We want to offer ourselves to go and do whatever He calls us to do, without excuses.

We do it all with a spirit of excellence. We want to give our very best in all that we say and do for Him, for it is because of Him that we live and move and have our being.

Strive to live for the Lord with a spirit of excellence. Serve the Lord with gladness, and know that He has made you.


The Rev. Dr. Joseph A. Perry is pastor of St. Mark AME Zion Church. Contact him at