Last week, I was offering assistance to someone. It was no big deal ... I was helping hold the door open as people were entering the church. A little while later, the gentleman looked at me and said, "Oh, I did not realize that you were the pastor!" He seemed genuinely surprised that a man of my stature or status would actually perform a task as menial as holding a door open.
First of all ... I was holding a door. It was not like I was out digging ditches with a pick ax.
Second of all ... as a pastor, serving is part of the job description.
But still, I was taken aback by the thought that there might be people that actually believe that holding a door open is beneath them, and that I might be counted among their number. And then again, maybe I am not all that surprised.
It goes to show that offering a simple, and sadly unexpected, kindness goes a long way in the world today. Holding the door did not tax me or burden me in any way, and yet it made an impression on one gentleman. Imagine what could happen if we put ourselves out, even just a little bit. Imagine what kind of impression that might make.
We have the opportunity to give a bit of ourselves every day. And we have a specific opportunity to serve next week. On Monday we celebrate Martin Luther King, Jr. Day as a day of service. It is a day when we open the doors of the church and welcome our neighbors. We will offer hospitality to those who may not always be made to feel welcome. We will have clothing, shoes and boots, and food for those who may be in need. We will be offering haircuts and other services.
You can join us. You can spend the day, or an hour or two. You can open the door and say, "You are welcome here." You can open your hearts and tell our neighbors, "You are loved." You can make someone's day better. You can make a difference.
The Martin Luther King, Jr. Day of Service is Monday, January 20, 9:00 AM - 2:00 PM. Please join us. Our hands ... God's work.
Congregational ChurchUCC, SACO MAINE12 BEACH STREET | SACO, ME 04072