We live in a very utilitarian world. There is value given to us as we are useful for something. Wherever we turn we find someone wants us to offer up the sacrifice of service and this is a very good thing.
Certainly it can go overboard. We can allow ourselves to become nothing less than a doormat or treat others in that manner.
However, it is great to be able to contribute.
Who doesn’t want to?
This brings me to the thought of how we allow those who are weak and possibly dying a place in this world.
Philip Yancey in Helping The Hurting, quoted from his devotional book Grace Notes, comments that “we live in a culture that has no natural ‘place’ for sick people. We put them out of sight, behind the walls of hospitals and nursing homes. We make them lie in beds, with nothing to occupy their time but the remote control devices that operate the television sets. We even give them the telling label ‘invalid’ (try pronouncing it a different way: in-val-id). We who are friends and loved ones of sick people must look for ways to help them preserve a sense of place.”
In our church, our particular body of Christ in Qualicum Beach gathering together, have a policy, or at least we try to, of giving everyone a job.
Many other churches do the same.
The thought is that everyone has something to contribute, no matter who they are.
To be part of the fellowship, and to feel like they are, people want to give of themselves in some way, as well as receive from others.
One day, a 94-year-old member of the church was putting tablecloths out for lunch which was to be after church. Someone came up to her and offered to help. She said no thanks; that was her job to do.
Everyone, from young to old, has much to give if we will only let them have the dignity of contributing.
It takes humility from God to allow another place by allowing him or her the opportunity of giving whether it is a small gift of mercy or something different.
We all have place, or at least we are meant to.
When another with less strength than you wants to offer you something in love, care, and generosity, receive it with gratitude and the understanding that all good gifts come from God.
When you have little strength, there is still something and much to bring and you will find that this brings dignity and a sense of well being even when everything around you and many tell you differently.
May we have the humility to receive as well as give in the name of the Lord our God. People are precious.
God has made us, each one, very precious in His sight.
God means for us to have and give others place in our lives, in this world, in eternity itself.
Pastor Allan Walker is at the Qualicum Beach Baptist Church