This service that you perform is not only supplying the needs of the Lord’s people but is also overflowing in many expressions of thanks to God. 2 Corinthians 9:12

“The best way to get people to praise God is to bless them. Even works with your enemies!” These were the words of a friend of mine I’ll call Ben. Ben had a casual friend we’ll call Steve several years earlier. This ‘friend’ and Ben had a falling out and, unfortunately, even though both parties were Christ-followers, the relationship was never the same. One day, shortly after the falling out, Ben received some unexpected money.

“I went to bed that night wondering how to spend the money,” Ben told me. “It wasn’t a large amount, but I wanted to spend it wisely. The Lord brought one name to my mind over and over again,” Ben smiled as he told the story. “I just couldn’t get Steve out of mind. I knew he needed some work done on his car. I also knew that if I tried to give him any money it would be rejected or misunderstood. So, I decided to send him an anonymous letter in the mail with the cash I knew would repair his car.”

Ben went on to tell how, several days later Steve was praising God to everyone he saw because of how the Lord had blessed him. “I wanted to come forward so bad!” Ben still smiled to tell the story, “but we were both blessed by the gift and that’s the important thing.”

How do you get people to praise God? By blessing them! It may not be money. It may be shoveling their sidewalk after a snowstorm, or mowing their grass while they are on vacation, or throwing out the guidelines on tipping at the restaurant (even if the service is terrible!).

It’s not always easy to bless someone else with our service. We can be abused or taken advantage of, misunderstood or criticized. It’s especially hard when the ones God calls us to serve are our ‘enemies’ or hate us. During the times when serving others is hard remember that our service to other people is really service to God.

Serving others is a three-fold blessing. We are blessed in our giving, those we serve are blessed by our service and God is blessed by their praise! When you get the opportunity to serve others, remember that your service never affects just one person. Our Heavenly Father loves to hear the praise of His people and serving others always leads to our Father being praised as well.

PRAYER: Awesome Heavenly Father. You have blessed me in so many ways. I have life. I have Jesus. I have the promise of eternity with You. Empower me by your Holy Spirit to reach out to those around me and bless them so that they in turn will give you the praise you so richly deserve. Help me remember that it isn’t my praise I seek but Yours. In Jesus name I pray. Amen.