An eighty year old makes a twenty-mile journey every day to be with his wife in a nursing home. The trip takes about two hours round-trip on the bus, but he doesn’t mind. He is warm and outgoing and has struck up friendships with the bus driver and some of the other passengers.
One evening the man is standing at the bus stop in a downpour when a Volkswagen pulls up. The driver calls out, “I’ve come to take you home. The bus has broken down and the driver, a friend of mine, phoned to ask me to go to the bus stop at the nursing home and see that you get home safely.”
If we are the church, then we are the ones who need help, the ones who decide to help, and the ones who are sent to help. When we are the church, we find ourselves in the middle of remarkable stories worth telling, because God is constantly working through us, enabling the church to do the good that brings God pleasure. Paul reminds us to adopt Christ’s attitude, emptying and humbling ourselves, serving, and becoming obedient (vv. 5-8). This posture that Christ shows us makes us available for God’s purposes.
Aeschylus said, “Whenever anyone makes an effort, God also lends a hand.” We do not work for goodness in our own power. We work in the power of goodness. Spirituality is not an accomplishment, but the work of God’s love.
As you look at the day ahead, how available are you to do the surprising, shining work that brings God pleasure?
Do something for God today that you consider a humbling act. Think about Christ’s example as you offer God this form of service.
God, sometimes we do humble acts without Christ’s attitude. Show us the difference it makes to live with the humility Jesus shows us. Free us to explore the deeper life God intends for us. Amen.