Spiritual Practice


Katy Steele & Elizabeth Mann

In preparing for my year abroad as a missionary with the World Race, I learned a lot about how different life would be in other countries. Our training helped me understand that things we call “rights” back home—the right to speak freely, to worship freely, even to have personal space—are not necessarily the norm in other places. When we expect the same rights in other cultures, we risk coming across as ignorant, offensive, and egotistical.

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In some countries, I’ve found that people stand closer than I’m used to during a conversation or that public transportation is not as comfortable as it is at home. In Guatemala, I rode on a chicken bus that packed eight people across rows meant to hold four. That’s how the Guatemalan people traveled, so that’s how I traveled. How selfish I would have been to refuse to share my seat because I’m used to having more room.


Philippians 2:1–8 teaches us what it means to have the heart of a servant.

Being a servant means adopting the mindset of Christ: a willingness and a desire to enter into someone else’s world, leaving our own behind. Jesus was entitled to glory in heaven and gave it up for a time to live among us, to suffer for us, to die in our place. In light of what Christ has done for us, let’s be a generation known not by a sense of entitlement but by our willingness to give up all we have for the sake of another.

—Katy Steele, 23


BE A SERVANT: Jesus summed up true humility in one sentence: “Whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant” (Matthew 20:26b, NIV). We are not to think of ourselves as better than others because we are all children of God. Instead, we are to become servants, offering our lives to the one who knows the true meaning of sacrificial love.

—Elizabeth Mann, 21


—from devozine (July/August 2015). Copyright © 2015 by The Upper Room®. All rights reserved.

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