Above and Beyond

Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us (Ephesians 3:20).

You know those people you can always count on? The ones who go above and beyond the call of duty? It’s the elementary school teacher who shows up at your child’s sporting event, the house guest who stays after dinner to help with the dishes, the coworker who surprises you with your favorite cup of coffee, the husband who draws you a bath after a long day. These actions aren’t necessary, but they reveal a special characteristic in each individual — a servant’s heart. Those who have an attitude of service go beyond what is expected.

In Genesis 24:14, Eliezer was looking for a wife for his master, Isaac. He asked God to show him a woman with an attitude of service; someone who would go beyond the expected. The hospitality of the day required women at the well to offer water to weary travelers, but not to their animals. An offer to water his camels would indicate the servant’s heart for which he had prayed. He knew the importance of finding a woman with the right heart, and he asked God to help him with the task.

Scripture tells us, “Before he had finished praying, Rebekah came out with her jar on her shoulder” (Genesis 24:15). When he asked for a little water from her jar, she quickly lowered the jar to her hands and gave him a drink. After she had given him a drink, she said, “I’ll draw water for your camels too until they have had enough to drink” (Genesis 4:19).

I am touched by not only her willingness to help a thirsty stranger, but how swiftly she reacted to the need. Verse 20 records Rebekah “quickly emptied her jar into the trough and ran back to the well to draw more water for all of his camels.” As we read further in chapter 24, Rebekah then offers Eliezer a place to spend the night. Her servant spirit was clearly demonstrated as she willingly gave far more than the bare minimum. When she saw a need, she took action.

Wherever He went, Jesus exceeded people’s expectations too. When Jesus saw a man looking for healing, Jesus also forgave his sins (Mark 2:1-12). When the disciples expected an ordinary day of fishing, they also found the Savior (Luke 5:1-11). When a widow was resigned to bury her dead son, Jesus restored her son to life (Luke 7:11-17). When the disciples thought the crowd should be sent home because there was no food, Jesus used a small meal to feed thousands and there were leftovers (John 6:1-15).

He has always and will always go above and beyond for us. As our key verse reveals, Jesus does more than we could ever ask or imagine. What if everywhere we went we exceeded people’s expectations as He did? As Rebekah did? When we see a need, let’s be intentional to love with a servant’s heart and go above and beyond the bare minimum.

Call to Action: How can you exceed someone’s expectations today?

Rachael Adams is a writer, speaker, podcaster, and founder of The Love Offering. Her heart’s desire is to encourage women to realize their God given purpose and to embolden them to move into the world through compassionate action. Rachael and her husband live in Kentucky with their two children. Connect with her at www.rachaelkadams.com or on Facebook and Instagram @rachaeladamsauthor.