God made people certain ways as seen in the beginning chapters of Genesis. If we want to best serve people, then it only makes sense that we do so in ways that line up with how God made us.
God made us special … in His image. (Gen. 1:26)
- Treat people with dignity and respect.
- Help them find their worth in Him.
God made us superior to other creation … the rest of creation is to be used by man. (Gen. 1:26, 28-30)
- This gives us a people first perspective … people are more important than programs, objects, or any other created thing.
God made us with a stewardship … to be caretakers of His creation. (Gen. 1:26)
- Provide opportunities for people to serve.
- Encourage them to do their part as accountable to God
God made us social beings … He walked with Adam and Eve in the Garden and He made woman for man. (Gen. 2:18-25; 3:8)
- Put primary emphasis on developing relationships, first with God and then with one another, remembering that the greatest commandment is love for God followed by love for others.
- Purposefully structure for fellowship, even by the way you set up chairs (circles or semi-circle versus rows).
God made us supplementary to one another … made a helper suitable. (Gen. 1:27; 2:18-25)
- Understand that from the beginning God built unity out of diversity and so it continues into the church.
- Respect and accept those different from us (i.e., the opposite sex with all the differences in ways of thinking and feeling).
- Pull on the strengths of one another to learn and grow, enlisting the unique contributions each has to make.
God made us for significance … to be fruitful and increase, to subdue and rule over the rest of creation. (Gen. 1:26, 28)
- Understand that one of the greatest motivations for getting people involved is that they feel it is something worthwhile, something in which they can succeed. When recruiting seek proper fits.
God made us self-governing … free will to eat or not eat the fruit from a forbidden tree. (Gen. 2:15-17)
- Realize that the bottom line is that people are responsible for their own choices. You cannot make them obey. From the beginning God gave people the choice to do what they wanted or surrender to the will to their Creator, knowing that they would not properly exercise that will. God did not force obedience.
- In leading or teaching people, do not control or manipulate them.
If you keep these lessons from Genesis in mind when serving people, it will help you better value them and keep perspective in terms of personal responsibility.