All I Did Was Pick Up Some Trash


“Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.” Mt. 5:16

As soon as I bent down and started to pick up some trash off the hotel lobby floor, the kind, sweet voice of a young woman behind the desk whom I had come to know while staying at the hotel called out to me.

“You don’t have to do that,” she said. Emphatically.

“Oh, I don’t mind,” I said happily.

“No, really, you don’t have to do that,” she replied. “You shouldn’t be doing that. I was about to do that.”

“So it’s one less thing for you to do,” I essentially said sometime around the time I stood up from the ground.

She wasn’t finished. “But you shouldn’t be doing that. Seriously,” she effectively said. “You’re the guest. Don’t you know what a guest is? You should be feeling like a guest. Welcome here.” She continued on. About how I should be treated like a guest. Taken care of. Not serving, I guess. Being served.

“You all have been very welcoming,” I said. “But I’d like to help while I’m here. I consider you as friends. Like family,” I said easily.

The conversation ended, but my thinking about it did not. I am a woman who was more spoiled, prideful, self-consumed than imaginable for decades, and I walked around with an arrogant attitude of entitlement, with the ongoing thought of, “I deserve this. And that. And you should do this for me. And that. I paid for this. So you better – ” But something has changed. Something big. I didn’t do it. God did it. Is doing it. Still. Making me more like Jesus. He loves me as His own daughter, adopted into His forever family via faith in Christ, but just as Jesus was when He came to this earth in the form of a man, God is teaching me how to love and serve Him in the form of a servant. I’m a daughter – and servant. With a servant’s heart. His heart. His Spirit in and through me. Ever reminding me not only am I to serve Him, but that I am to love and serve others in Christ’s name. And that this world doesn’t need to just hear the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ, and repent and believe in Him, and to get help in learning to follow Him and become more like Him. It needs to see the love of Christ, the servant’s heart of Christ, the essence of Christ, the Spirit of Christ, in action. Through those who love Him. Like me and you. The world is watching Christ’s followers. We should look different, sound different, act different. Not to say we can’t and won’t be blessed by God through others like a kind hotel worker, but regardless of what the world does, or doesn’t do, we as His followers are called to humbly serve with Christ’s love, shining with His light that others might see God’s glory.

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