Somewhere in between the Fall of Man and the Victorian era, work got a bad rap. Specifically, physical labor became known as the bane of mankind’s existence.
Not sure why that happened. As a lifetime Weight Watcher, I am well aware of the benefits of a hard workout. Even better if that workout results in something being cleaned for someone, or some physical alteration to their yard that is of benefit to them!!!
But . . . things being the way they are with human nature, the idea of serving others and being useful to them became attached to the concept of servanthood (being of a lower caste than someone else). And our fleshly pride didn’t like that at all.
This is despite the fact that Philippians 2 tells us that our Saviour willingly condescended to become our servant for 33 years on earth. “Oh, no, God forbid that anyone should think of me as less than I think of myself!!!”
And so it happens that now, more than 2000 years after Christ’s advent, it is hard for a Sunday school teacher to find classmembers willing to come clean their church on the day, once every five weeks, when it is assigned to them.
Those who have read this blog with any regularity know that I am all about intentionality in living.
In fact, while I understand that many people do not wish to consider living intentionally (it “nails them down” and reduces their options, according to some of their own number), I do not factor them in when I lay out my goals for where I hope to go during my time yet on this planet. If they don’t come along with me, that is their choice. But I am not going to stop the forward momentum just because someone balks at the journey!
So, during our monthly church cleaning session, I plan to strap on the backpack vacuum cleaner every time I am able until the Lord takes me home to glory. I will vacuum the auditorium and as much of the rest of the church as I can in an hour and a half. That is four Weight Watchers points for me! Just what I want!
If others are there, we will get the rest of the building cleaned. If it is just me, I may still have time to take on the bathrooms.
If not, so be it. I am one person. One person who chooses to not beg others to do things that would actually benefit them greatly (getting a workout, building a sense of community).
We can only do what we can do.
However, ponder this: health care costs are skyrocketing and paid employees get paid health care. The only other option for cleaning our church, if volunteers don’t do it, is for the church to hire a cleaner, not only incurring a greater bill for wages, but also for health care. I understand we just spiked upward again only last month so that the health care bill for around 50 employees is now over $10,000 a month.
And, actually, that is not bad, considering our family pays over $900 a month for three of us. Three of us covered by my 27-year military career. Health care is expensive and the U.S. has the best health care of all (when you are covered and can get it).
Sooo, we can put our heads in the sand and say that the church staff size and its costs have nothing to do with us. We can refuse to volunteer–when a Sunday school teacher writes down the information about a church cleaning session, we can just sit there and not make a note of it.
We can . . . In the end, what do we gain?