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“Serve Lord Always Valiantly Everyday! (S.L.A.V.E)

Ramesh C. Reddy

Editors Note: The italicized parts of the devotional were originally sent through email on Tuesday, November 17, 1998 at 12:28:15 p.m. to InterVarsity Christian Fellowship (IVCF) students and others who wanted to receive daily devotionals at the University of Pittsburgh while I was serving at IVCF! It is being republished on Pittsburgh Standard today. The non-italicized part of the devotional were orginally published in Pittsburgh Standard on May 07, 2012 at 7:06 a.m. The background songs can be from any era including the present and are accessible using Internet Explorer!

"Paul and Timothy, servants of Christ Jesus, To all the saints in Christ Jesus at Philippi, together with the overseers and deacons. Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ." (Philippians 1:1-2, NIV)

Paul is writing this while he is chained in jail. When we realize that and look to the contents of this letter, there is still so much joy. The question is where does Paul get all this joy when he is locked at jail in chains. Throughout the following days, I hope to look at the Book of Philippians again!

Today, I just decided to look at the phrase 'Paul and Timothy, servants of Christ Jesus!'

Approach Question:
How do you introduce yourself to others?

I asked myself why is it so significant in the way Paul introduces himself and Timothy?
It is so significant and amazing that Paul introduces himself and Timothy here as
'servants of Christ Jesus' because  he could have introduced himself as one who is trained thoroughly in the Jewish law, an apostle of Jesus Christ, or even as a saint in Christ Jesus. Yet, Paul acknowledges being a servant to the Lord Jesus Christ, seeing Christ as his Master. It is important to realize that servant and SLAVE can be used interchangeably at times.


I asked myself what are the roles of a servant/slave?

1. A servant/slave should not make up his own rules but is asked to follow the rules of His Master.

2. A servant/slave is asked not cling to his own rights but give them up to be obedient to the Master.

3. A servant/slave is one who serves others before he serves himself.

4. A servant/slave is one who is submissive to the Master.

I asked myself why does Paul want to see himself as a servant and be a servant of Jesus Christ?

Paul is setting an example right away that he is one that does not want to make up his own rules but wants to follow the rules of His Master, Jesus Christ. He does not want to cling to his own rights but give them up to be obedient to His Master, Jesus Christ. He wants to be one who serves Jesus Christ before serving himself. Paul sees himself in submission to Christ, His Master no matter what is happening in his life. He wanted to imitate Jesus Christ who came not to be served but to serve and give His life as a ransom for humanity. Therefore, Paul knows His allegiance belongs to Christ and following His example of servitude. Jesus came back to life and saved Saul of Tarsus on his way to Damascus so Saul changed his name to Paul and decided to become a servant of Jesus Christ.

I asked myself what are the implications for my own life?
 Just as Paul, introduced himself by his name and then as a 'servant of Jesus Christ'. I should not hesitate to introduce myself as a 'servant of Jesus Christ' and realize that whatever positions I like to hold or be called by, I need to see myself as a SLAVE to Christ and live my life as a SLAVE of Jesus Christ. Because if I am not a SLAVE of Jesus Christ, then I am a SLAVE of Satan. There is no middle ground.

I ask you now dear friend, who will you be a SLAVE to in life?
Dear friend, it is important for us to realize that whatever positions we like to hold or be called by, we need to see ourselves as slaves!  This is a radical concept because people don't like to see themselves as slaves. We do not like to think about being a SLAVE to anybody because we want to have our own freedom and do our own things. But the fact of the matter is that each one is a SLAVE. The question is whether we will be a SLAVE to Satan or SLAVE to Christ!  If we see ourselves as a SLAVE to Christ then we will want to be obedient to Christ and follow his teachings. This in itself is because of God's abundant grace working in our lives so we will not cling to our own rights or want to do what we think is right from a human perspective but want to rather do things from God's perspective taking our standard from God's Word.

It is not about what we think is right but what we know to be right. Jesus came to serve and we should not do any less. We should have an attitude of servitude towards others.

Jesus who became a servant to redeem us will become our example to live a life of servitude to others. We can have a life of joy being a SLAVE to Christ because the alternative may look better temporarily but it has terrible consequences in this life and the life to come.

If we do not see ourselves as a SLAVE to Christ, then we will become a SLAVE to Satan and  a SLAVE to every sin that will hold us in bondage. When that happens, we will be obedient to the lusts of the flesh and use sin as an excuse to let it rule over us and be our master. In essence, we will be allowing Satan to rule our daily activities. This is not something anyone should choose.  Lord, I don't want that, please help me Lord!

When we decide to serve only ourselves over others, we start ignoring the Lord's ways and seek our own ways whether it has to do with academics, career, relationships, fun activities, etc. We may even think we are serving the Lord but the Lord looks at our motives. Friend, Satan is the father of lies and can be so deceptive and lead you into deception. On the surface, Satan will make you think what you are doing is not wrong but then later, Satan will condemn you. Not so, with Jesus Christ. Jesus loves you so much that when you become His slave, you will realize it is better to be a slave to Jesus Christ then being a master of your own fate and in essence being a slave to Satan. I don't want that for you or me friend!

"But if you do not do what is right, sin is crouching at your door; it desires to have you, but you must master it." (Genesis 4:7, NIV)

We do not want to give Satan a foothold in our lives. If that happens, we will want to be the master and everyone else to be our SLAVEs because we will be possessed with our own desires. This is not the Way of the Master: Jesus Christ who came to serve and give His life as a ransom to redeem humanity.

The battle should belong to the Lord and not to us. Just as Paul was joyful serving Christ Jesus being the SLAVE of Christ, we too can have joy when we yield our lives over to the Master. Only when we follow the Way of the Master will we be willing to impart peace and grace of the Lord Jesus Christ in other people's lives. It starts with us and we need to be right with the Lord Jesus asking Him to be the Master of our lives. 

The amazing thing is that when we are slaves to Christ, we are also seen as His children. Just because we are slaves does not mean we are not His children. Paul refers to Himself as a servant of Christ Jesus but also sees himself as a child of God. If we see ourselves as a child of God, we are also children of Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior. You have to read the New Testament to understand the concept of 'slave' and 'children of God'

That can only happen when we realize that sin marred our relationship with God and there is nothing we can do on our own to be redeemed and saved if it were not for the sacrificial death of the Lamb of God to save us. Jesus became a SLAVE and died a criminal's death on the cross even though He was perfect to save you and me from the power and allure of sin. He shed His precious blood for you and me to save us. That is exciting to know friend. You can come as you are no matter where you have been or what you have done. You can come to God through Jesus Christ who wants to be the Lord and Savior of your life. Let Jesus be the Master of your life friend. He who created you knows you so well and let Him guide you friend so you can be a joyful SLAVE to Christ Jesus.

Yes friend, now is the time of Salvation. You may have lived your life for the lust of the flesh being a SLAVE to sin but it does not have to be that way. No friend, you can have Jesus Christ change you and transform you by the Power of His Love and He will friend. Yes, He will! You will slowly be transformed by His grace which is a process, for Sanctification in Christ is a process. It can only happen when we yield our lives to Christ who justified us by His grace. May you serve Lord always valiantly everyday!

"Serve Lord Always Valiantly Everyday!" (S.L.A.V.E)/"Who will you be a S.L.A.V.E to in life?"

Dear Lord Jesus, thank you that you are our Master. Thank you how much you love us and care for us. We are forever in your care. Lord you want us to be servants as you became a servant though you are God. Help us to live our lives in such a way that we will be seen as your servants Lord Jesus Christ. Thank you Lord you also see us as saints and we are your children. We come to you with all our flaws and ask you to forgive us please Lord. Please deliver us from being SLAVES to the sin that binds us and the enemy whose main desire is to keep us away from serving you. Protect us in the shadow of your wings. Thank you Lord we can be delivered from anything in your perfect timing. Lord, we also know that there are areas in our life that we will have to endure through until we see you face to face but we thank you that you can give us the strength to go on
and a way out against temptations. We thank you that when it comes to sin, we need not live in it because through your Holy Spirit working in us, you will help us. Thank you so much Jesus! We acknowledge you as our Lord and Personal Savior and ask you to be the Master of our lives. Please take away all our sin and cleanse us with your precious cleansing blood to give us new life. Help Oh Lord please. Thank you so much Jesus for being part of our life and that you have heard our prayers and answered us. In Your Name We Pray Jesus! Amen!

Lord Jesus, You are my all in all. You are my Prince of Peace, Rock, Savior, and Friend. You are my Holy Father guiding me through to live a life of righteousness, holy righteousness. Oh God, I need you more than ever. I need to feel your hands around me holding me tight. I need your love to surround me so that you can glow in my life. Help me please Jesus. I desire in your presence. Thank you for guiding me to live a life of righteousness. Oh God you love me more than ever. You hear my voice when I cry out to you. When I seek your face, you fill me up. You are my all in all. Thank you Jesus so much for your help no matter what I face, your grace is available and you take my case. Thank you for hearing us and answering us. In Your Name I Pray Jesus! AMEN! (Most of the prayer is from a vineyard song called “All in All”)

No matter what you feel in your heart, know that Jesus has come in and resides with you! You are not alone! To make your walk strong with the Lord, spend time in prayer talking to Him as you would to a friend. You don’t need special words to talk to the Lord. Spend time in His Word reading Psalms and turning them into prayer. Next allow God to heal you and speak to you through the Gospel of John or Gospel of Mark before moving on to other Books of the Bible! Slowly, let the Lord show you to which Scriptures He wants you to go to next. It is also important to be part of a body of believers to help you grow in the faith. Find a Bible believing church that preaches the Word of God from Genesis to Revelation proclaiming Jesus Christ our crucified and risen Lord who brings us hope, healing, and help!

May the Lord's presence and peace fill you with His love now and forever! Amen!

Friend, if you have prayed this prayer and meant it in your heart, you are a new creation in Christ and all old things are passed away and everything has become new! You may feel something or may not but don’t base it on feelings but base your new life in Christ on the promises of our Savior who will never leave you nor forsake you! Amen!

Feel free to email me at if you want to meet to study the Bible, pray with, talk about Spiritual issues or whatever is on your mind! My number is 412-641-9426

"This is my work and I can do it only because Christ's mighty energy is at work within me." (Colossians 1:29, TLB)

Express Your View


"What role does the word R.E.P.E.N.T play in your life?"By Ramesh C. Reddy (April 19, 18, 10:01 a.m.)

"What is your view of T.I.M.I.N.G  in life?" By Ramesh C. Reddy (March 09, 18, 10:21 a.m.)

Mark 1:12-13: "How Do You Handle T.E.M.P.T.A.T.I.O.N in life?" By Ramesh C. Reddy (March 08, 18, 09:57 a.m.)

Mark 1:12-13: "What determines your G.R.O.W.T.H in the Lord?"By Ramesh C. Reddy (March 07, 18, 10:37 a.m.)

Mark 1:10-11: "Who will you P.R.A.I.S.E publicly today in life?" By Ramesh C. Reddy (March 06, 18, 10:02 a.m.)

Mark 1:9: "What will you take a S.T.A.N.D for in life?" By Ramesh C. Reddy (March 03, 18, 10:39 a.m.)

Mark 1:4-8: "Who do you P.O.I.N.T to in life?"By Ramesh C. Reddy (March 03, 18, 10:39 a.m.)

Mark 1:1-4: "Why bother seriously with P.R.O.P.H.E.C.Y everyday?" By Ramesh C. Reddy (Jan 04, 18, 7:19 p.m.)



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