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Thursday, March 7, 2013

Thursday's Thoughts - A servant's heart

Mark 10:45 For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”
These last weeks I've been thinking about serving my family.  It has come up in posts of different blogs I read.  It comes up in the verses I memorize and in the scripture I'm reading.  Seems to me that I'm being delivered a message of something I need to be working on.

And tonight, after a long day of piano lessons and early-out from school and three kids in daycare instead of two, homemade pizza and starting to build a greenhouse, I looked at the pile of dishes and felt wiped out.

A picture came to mind of a scene from my earlier years.  I'm quite certain it happened on more than one occasion.  One of us or all three of us complaining about the dishes, and my dad waltzing into the kitchen didn't get mad at us or start ordering us around, just simply said "You go play, I'll do the dishes." 

Oh, man, did we ever feel awful!!  There's Dad whistling in the kitchen as he does the work of the three of us.  Sometimes, most times, we'd go back and beg to help feeling so guilty.  But no, he would have none of it.  And firmly and cheerfully, he told us he was going to finish them.

My dad gave us an example of Jesus washing His disciples feet.  He served us when it was really our responsibility to serve him and our family in this way.

I can just see the disciples (John 13:1).  It doesn't say much about why Jesus washed their feet except that He knew what was coming, and He loved them.  I've always wondered if someone hadn't done it when they entered the house.  I even thought that they had been arguing right before that about who was the greatest.  But it doesn't make that connection in John. 

I imagine that the disciples were looking around at each other and feeling a bit guilty about Jesus, the  master, doing a servant's job.  Peter's even bold enough to say something.  "Hey, Jesus, you're not gonna wash my feet."  He ends up turning it around after Jesus speaks to him about it. 

It wasn't the place of the master to wash the feet in their culture.  One of the servants would do it.  I'm not sure if there was no servant in that room because it was rented.  Or if Jesus was just making a point. Had no one stooped low enough to serve the others? 

My dad showed his servant's heart even more when my mom was slowly becoming more and more sick.  He didn't complain of the extra load.  He whistled and joked to help us through one of the toughest situations I've ever been through. 

When he was all alone caring for mom, with my brother in college and my sister married and me in missionary training again.  He didn't complain of the tasks, but was cheerful on the phone.  We never knew how hard it was because he was nothing like me.  He didn't complain.

    Proverbs 15:15 All the days of the afflicted are evil, but the cheerful of heart has a continual feast.

I wish I would have recognized it sooner and learned at his feet better.  He served his family joyfully.  It seemed he recognized that this was God's will for him and he was willing.  He served my mom right through to the end. 

I have a great example, in my dad, of a servant.  I am so thankful to God for my dad.  And I'm also thankful that he's found someone new to share his life with.  They've been married just a bit longer than Carpenter and I.  And between the two of them they have six kids spread across the United States. 
My dad tickling my feet while my cousin laughs instead of rescuing me.

Making the most of today,


  1. So beautiful, Steph. Unfortunately, I don't remember your dad rescuing me from dish duty at the dorm (haha), but I do remember him serving in so many other ways. What a great example to all of us! Thanks for writing this down.

    1. Yeah, Kristie. I don't think he did it super often. I love how the stories your mom tells about how your kids love him.

  2. This is beautiful! Definitely on my keeper list and a wonderful inspiration!

  3. Enjoying your family memories Steph! Toni