and Jesus himself said that "the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many," (Matthew 20:28). We are called to serve, but service should come as a natural reaction from the healthy heart. Unless your heart is focused on Christ, you can't serve with right motivation.
Even Jesus, the ultimate Servant, made His relationship with the Father His first priority. Before He began His public ministry, He spent 40 days in the desert fasting and worshipping the Father. Amidst His ministry, He took time to rest, get away and spend time with the Father. Why would we as wives, mothers, friends and servants not follow that example?
Time with God allows us to examine our hearts and love ourselves so we can love others. Jesus taught that the first and greatest commandment is to love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your mind and with all your soul. The second is to love your neighbor as yourself (Matthew 22:37-40). First love God. Second, you will realize your worth and from that you will be able to love others. Do you see the inference that to love your neighbor as yourself, you must first love yourself?
Furthermore, Jesus taught that we can't lead and serve others unless we have our hearts right before Him.
Why do you see the speck that is in your brother's eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, 'Let me take the speck out of your eye,' when there is the log in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother's eye. Matthew 7:3-5
It is impossible for me to lead my goldenheads and walk in faith with the engineer if I am not constantly examining my own heart. Time with God allows me to do this. Just last week, I felt this constant heaviness, ugliness, downcast spirit. I was a horrible wife and mother. Unpleasant. I spent much time wrestling with God, begging, why is my Spirit heavy within me? In that wrestling, God revealed to me unrepented sin of slander toward the engineer. As this was revealed and confessed, the weight was lifted and I felt like I could once again be in intimate relationship with the engineer and lead my goldenheads in example of my daily living.
In my spiritual maturing, it has been my challenge, to spend more time with God in the Word, study and prayer (which makes my heart beautiful) than time spent on outward appearance. I strive to spend more time with God than time spend in my workout, fixing hair and makeup. I love the story of Samuel anointing the little shepherd boy David as king. David was least likely of his brothers to become king but God said to Samuel,
For the LORD sees not as man sees; man looks on the outward appearance, but the LORD looks on the heart. I Samuel 16:7.
Take time to evaluate the quality and quantity of time you spend seeking your Maker. If the scales are not tipped toward time spent with Him but rather on outward appearance, begin making small changes in your routine to even out the scales. If the scale is mostly even, strive to make the time seeking Him even more weighty. There is no greater priority than to seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things (inner and outward beauty) will be added unto you (Matthew 6:33.)