So... why are we here? Pondering the "why" of life... and maybe we don't have the answer to that question, but there is one question we can ask ourselves:
This was on my mind quite a bit today. It's Sunday, and today, in particular, I served others more than myself. I share this not to brag in any way, but I feel very passionate about this - that serving others is a VITAL part of life.
Serving, selflessly - not begrudgingly. I don't even think that counts, if the attitude doesn't support the action.
This morning, I drove to church, where I teach Sunday School (among other things, including playing piano!). Teaching is something I do and love, hoping to inspire some of the younger kids in doing things that are greater than themselves. One topic we discuss is how we can serve others - for instance, we recently gathered food items for the local food pantry. Working with the kids isn't a paid position and I mostly provide my own supplies, but I enjoy it and most of all - I believe it's worth it. I believe in giving of our time as well as our means & resources.
After leaving church, I went to my mom's house to help with some work in her basement - where there had been work underway all morning. This was a project my dad had been working on a couple of years ago prior to his sudden death... and just hadn't been completed. I know it's something that has been weighing on her mind and also think it will be a great source of closure when that's completed. So extra time has been dedicated to this labor of love.
The last thing I did on the way home today was stop at the store in my hometown and pick up items for dinner for one of my high school classmates. Wanted to drop this off at her house in town, as she was recently in a bad car accident. She won't be cooking for a long time, as she sustained two broken bones in her right arm, fractured right hip socket, broken front and rear left pelvic bones.
Her husband has been taking great care of her - and she will be off work for awhile! Despite all of her injuries, she was in GREAT spirits and had a smile on her face per usual for her! I was very glad I got to visit with her and we shared a prayer before I left.
I want to reiterate that bringing up these instances from my day were NOT brought up to show how great I am (SO not perfect, but the best I can be!) or brag. That is far from the truth. I just feel for me, that these are "normal" things I feel it's important to do.
It's worth mentioning that both my mom and my classmate are VERY strong women that are used to being on the "giving" end of service. That can be a difficult transition to be able to be able to gracefully receive service, but both do it beautifully! Remember when you are serving someone else that you never know when you might be the one receiving.
Even as I write this, my friend is searching for the best way to acknowledge all of those that took loving care with her at her worst moments. To still be in a fragile state and be searching for that way to give is a living testiment to her character.
Through the years, I've seen service day in and day out from both of my parents, in addition to many others - have been fortunate to constantly be exposed to it. My dad was a pastor for 4-1/2 decades and in that time, there were countless instances of he and Mom giving of themselves to others for no thought of payment or even a "thank you."
And, because of that, they both found their way into the hearts of many.
Dad served, as a teacher, even on an international level (tried his hand at helping in the kitchen, also, but was removed from kitchen duty after cutting his finger with a paring knife... cooking was never his "thing"!!). Unfortunately, he wasn't able - he died just weeks before he was to return to the Philippines.
I am someone that believes in the teachings of the Bible, and I am not here to push my beliefs onto you. But I believe I'd be remiss if I didn't mention the selflessness of Jesus' service to others in this post! If you want to view it as just a story, it still will have much meaning.
This isn't spoken of as much as other accounts in the Bible, but it's something that takes place at the Last Supper and is a wonderful example of service and humility. The meal at the Last Supper was well under-way. Jesus got up from the table, removed his outer clothing and grabbed a towel. He poured water into a container and began to wash the feet of his friends, his disciples. He then dried them with the towel.
His good friend, Simon Peter, argued a bit with him about letting him wash his feet - he protested and then told him if he washed his feet, then he also had to wash his hands and feet!
But he was missing the real point.
Jesus was showing humility to Simon Peter and the others. You may have heard the phrase,"...a servant is not greater than his master" - it is from the passage from the famous Last Supper.
An important point about washing feet in that time period is that washing feet upon arrival to a home, etc was showing good hospitality. Whether wearing a common sandal or more enclosed leather on the feet, they were washed not just for show. Their feet would be dirty from the dust from the road, but there was also potential to step in manure. There were many oxen, donkeys & camels traveling the roads also, and through travel, carts would spread their gift all over the road.
You can see why it was such a humbling act to wash the feet of others - this was a job left to a lowly person, as it was definitely not pleasant. It showed an act of humility and act of service to the disciples in how they should treat each other and how they should treat all others.
I hope you take the time to give of yourself in service, in whatever capacity is right for you. It is amazingly fulfilling!
And, just a reminder to...
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