On Your Hands and Knees
Serving the Lord can be a funny thing. Pride can easily motivate our service. We want to be recognized for our deeds, for our sacrifice. We want our service to be covered with the praise and adoration of others. When I was 10 years old, I was given a visible illustration of what service should be like. My friend Otis was a man’s man. He drove an old Camaro, and was very handy. During one of our all church “clean ups”, Otis demonstrated that service to Jesus is not about the praise of man. Otis had been crippled by a debilitating disease which left him confined to a wheel chair. He could not do the physical help but he could manage the clean up teams. I was young so I got out of cleaning up, but while I was on the other side of church playing, I saw Otis roll up to a small patch of grass. No one else was there, and he did not know that I was watching him. I saw him stumble out of his chair, almost falling flat on his face. It startled me and as I was just about to get help I noticed him crawling to the grass. As he got to the corner, he pulled out a wrench (still on his hands and knees) and began working on the sprinkler. It took time but he got the job done. He then crawled back to his wheel chair, managed to get back in, and rolled away. No praise from anyone, no recognition, just serving the Lord. I will never forget that day. In ministry I need to be reminded to serve like Otis, humbly without want or need of praise and adoration. Jesus addresses this in His Sermon on the Mount, “Beware of practicing your righteousness before other people in order to be seen by them, for then you will have no reward from your Father who is in heaven. Thus, when you give to the needy, sound no trumpet before you, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may be praised by others. Truly, I say to you, they have received their reward. But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, so that your giving may be in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you.” Matthew 6:1-4.
Otis passed away last night and I wanted to say thanks. Thanks for teaching me what service should be like and thanks for loving Jesus. I know you are with Him now, loving and serving Him!