It was probably around six or seven years ago, and it was a Sunday morning service at First Baptist of North Terre Haute, about two years prior to my fallout.
Giving the sermon was our pastor, Mark (one of the most righteous and Godly men I have ever known, Lovingly called “Tobes” for short). The Topic: Servitude and Self-righteousness.
He began with a solemn look, and for the life of me as I write this, I can’t remember the first half of it. Then the part that sticks with me to this day began at the close of the service.
He went on to describe how we as Christians tend to be heavily self-righteous. We think that we are the best things since sliced bread, when in all actuality we should be the opposite. We should be called to be humble and be servants to all.
To the guy who just lost his job....
To the woman who has an addiction....
To the son who just lost his dad in Iraq....
And the verse sticks in my mind like a tattoo to my arm:
John 13:3-5 : Jesus knew that the Father had put all things under his power, and that he had come from God and was returning to God; 4 so he got up from the meal, took off his outer clothing, and wrapped a towel around his waist. 5 After that, he poured water into a basin and began to wash his disciples’ feet, drying them with the towel that was wrapped around him.”
His voice echoed around our beautiful auditorium as he read it.
And then it happened.
Mark, without saying a word, pulled a basin and a ceramic jug of water out from behind the pulpit. Walking down into the auditorium, he stopped at the second row. Kneeling down, he began to remove a young man’s shoes and proceeded to wash his feet.
Right in the middle of the service...and it was dead silent as he was doing so.
That young man was my brother, who I could tell was close to tears after this display of servitude.
“We are servants,” he said, “because that is what is demanded of us.”
I could not believe what I was seeing. And neither could the audience of 200 or so.
It's after all these years that I finally understand the true meaning of this. Mark is a true servant of God, as we all must teach ourselves to be. It does not matter if it means holding the door for someone or mowing the lawn for an older person. We are an image of Jesus, and it’s time we start acting like it.
I struggle with this everyday. I need help sometimes just getting through the day at work. I deal with people who have never heard the name of Jesus. And they don’t really care to.
But I think it was the great Lecrae who said it best:
“How can they believe in something they ain’t never heard?”
It is time we step up to the plate. Tell people about God. Get over your shyness. Reconcile with your past. And move forward to finish strong to His glory.
Thanks, Mark. I love you, brother.
With Love Always,
If you find that you need to talk to us, let us know. We are your servants. We want you to take that leap of faith. If you have questions that you have no answers to, let us know. We will be there for you. We will help you begin that relationship.