I was recently contemplating the words servant versus the word slave. In spiritual life, it is often said that we are servants, or those who minister to the needs of others. We choose this willingly.
One the other hand, a slave is someone who is ministering to the needs of others, but unwillingly. Many of us feel like slaves in our everyday lives. We go to work resentfully, feeling trapped by invisible obligations that (incidentally) we tacitly agreed to. The agreement was probably made in an unspoken exchange… “I’ll work at a job to make enough money to be a desirable mate.”
This happens in relationships as well. “I’ll be enslaved to your personality glitches because I dare not expose my feelings for fear of being unlovable.”
It’s interesting to note that the same job or relationship might feel like service if the choices came from love rather than fear. Think about that for a minute.
Desperation makes us unconscious. If we suspend self-doubt and make our choices from the platform of love, our direction would be guided by a steady hand. As soon as self-doubt and desperation intrude, we are slaves and the master is fear.