Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Scrubbing Toilets For Jesus

As a part of my duties at work, I have to speak a lot in public settings. To aid in this area of my work, I belong to a local public speaking club known as Toastmasters. A small group of about 15 or so meet every other Thursday at our district office. It draws local businessmen and women who hope to develop their skills at speaking. The one hour meeting consists of different exercises including impromptu speaking, as well as, prepared-in-advance speeches.

Yesterday during the impromptu portion of the meeting, a question was asked that people were given an opportunity to respond to. The question, and I’m paraphrasing, was ‘what valuable lessons have you learned recently?’ It could have been about work, or home life, or whatever. In our group, we are blessed to have a woman that comes that is truly a breath of fresh air. She loves the Lord, and it just oozes out of every pore of her body. She stood up and gave her answer for the question.

She let us know that she recently had accepted a position as a janitor in a very public facility, and how it had humbled her. One of the primary parts of her job was to clean several frequently-used public restrooms, including eight toilets. Rather than letting this cause her to despair or look down on the task she was now given, she approached with joy and an incredible attitude.

She said that the first time she worked on the bathrooms that they were horrible. But after a few hours of scrubbing, they started looking pretty good. She then said that she felt burdened to clean the bathroom as if Jesus himself was coming to use it. She began to ask herself while and after cleaning if the bathroom was clean enough for her King. Was the toilet scrubbed enough so that it was worthy of Jesus himself using it. It became less about it being a job, but more about doing her best for her maker.

It is a great example of the verse from Colossians 3:23, “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for God, not for man.” I must admit that it changed my attitude toward my job that afternoon. I noticed it changed the attitude in one of my coworkers as well. Were we working our jobs as if working for God? Was I giving my best to my king?

And this verse doesn’t necessarily just apply to my job. “Whatever you do” is pretty broad! Do I approach life with this attitude? Does this mind set of working for God pass into how I pay my bills…mow my yard…take care of my home…take care of my parents and neighbors…care for my children…honor my wife? Nothing really gets excluded from ‘whatever you do’.

Other verses that are similar and just as powerful include verse like 1 Corinthians 10:31 that says, “So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.” How can we read that verse and not say, ‘wow!’ Whatever we do? How about applying this to what we eat? Do we honor God with our bodies with our food choices and how we take care of the temple of the Holy Spirit? Both Camille and I have tried to do better with this lately, but it is tough! Camille seems to be much better at it than me, but I am trying.

Another verse is Colossians 3:17 that says, “And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.” Powerful words! Whatever we do! This theme just continues to ring out.

Whether we are working at a desk, cooking a meal for a loved one, teaching a Sunday school lesson, or scrubbing toilets…do it for the Glory of God…as if working for God, not for man…all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God! Wow…what a wonderful world it would be if we lived that out in our daily lives! What wonderful husbands and wives, fathers and mothers, employees and neighbors we would be if we began to put that into practice even a little bit.

So…I plan to pray for God to help me and my wife and kids in this area. We have to start somewhere. Let’s make a choice to start glorifying God and bringing him honor in WHATEVER WE DO! Even in scrubbing toilets…

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