Tuesday, March 11, 2014

"You do it to Jesus"

"Whatever you do, even if you help somebody cross the road, 
 you do it to Jesus. 
Even if you give somebody a glass of water, 
you do it to Jesus.
Such a simple little teaching, but it is so important." 
- Mother Teresa

One of the hallmarks of Mother Teresa's life and mission was that she saw Jesus in the suffering people she served.

There have been times when I have tried to take this approach to those God has called me to serve -- for example, let's say certain members of my family -- to see the face of Jesus in them, and to minister to them with joy and humility. 

This plan usually lasts for about ten minutes.

The problem is:   

Jesus does not ask me to tape or glue broken jigsaw puzzle pieces 20 times in an hour, or need to be reminded 19 out of those 20 times to say "Please."

Jesus is not in the habit of yelling with rage when I tell him that this is blue-box week, not grey-box week, or that we go to church on Sundays, not Saturdays.

Jesus never screams (with hand up to mouth for increased megaphone effect) when told that it's time to get ready for supper, and does not need to be told ten times to go to the bathroom and wash his hands.

Jesus does not say, "Mom? Mom?  Mom? Mom? Mom? Mom? Mom? Mom? Mom? Mom? Mom? Mom? Mom? Mom? Mom? Mom? Mom? Mom? Mom? Mom? Mom? Mom? Mom? Mom?"

And Jesus does not wait to say, "Mom? Mom?  Mom? Mom? Mom? Mom? Mom? Mom? Mom? Mom? Mom? Mom? Mom? Mom? Mom? Mom? Mom? Mom? Mom? Mom? Mom? Mom? Mom? Mom?" until I have gone downstairs to the laundry room, and then say it louder.

Jesus does not make a point of shrieking when we back the car in the driveway.

Jesus does not need his underwear changed three times a day.

Jesus does not, when given a time-out alone in his room, take that opportunity to wet his pants.

So it can be a little difficult to see service to certain people in my life as service to Jesus.

But then again ...

Even after I have said harsh words like "Stop it!"  "Don't talk to me!" and "Could you leave me alone for five minutes?" Jesus' face lights up when he sees me again.

Even after I roll my eyes, let out long sighs, and seethe with irritation, Jesus catches my eye and asks me to play "sad face" or comes to sit on my lap to squish me "flat like a pancake."

And although I say goodbye to Jesus in the schoolyard each morning and walk away feeling (I confess) guiltily relieved that I won't be seeing him for another six-and-a-half hours, I come back in the afternoon and scan the crowd, eager to see him coming.

Jesus never holds anything against me.  He never bad-mouths me or anyone else he knows.  He doesn't give me the cold shoulder or tell me I need to make it up to him before he'll smile at me.  He is always glad to see me.  

He loves me.  I am special and dear to him.

So maybe Mother Teresa was right when she said this is "a simple little teaching."  Maybe I just need to pay more attention to my simple little teacher.


  1. Thank you Jeannie. God has given you a real gift with words that really spoke to me this morning. Thank you for sharing this!

    1. Thank you, Sharon. It's been so nice to discover one another's blogs. I think we can all learn so much from others' experiences.

  2. What a wonderful post, Jeannie. May God give you grace and joy as you serve the least of our brothers. It is so true that to serve as unto Jesus lasts about ten minutes (in my case, less!) in our own strength.

    1. Yeah, when I said ten minutes I was trying to make myself look good! :-)
      Thank you so much for commenting, Betsy. God bless you today.

  3. Lol, your household sounds a lot like mine. I can really relate. Good post! with a good message too.

    1. Thank you, Lisa! I really appreciate you stopping by & commenting. See you soon!

  4. God uses out kids to teach us things all the time too, Jeannie. Thanks for sharing the lessons you've learned with Jonathan.


    1. Thanks, Tim. They are lifelong lessons, that's for sure.

    2. Hi Jeannie, I've been thinking about you a lot since reading this post, and this morning I read in Romans 8 about the Spirit of God living in us as believers, that through him we cry "Abba, Father" and that Jesus is at the right hand of the Father interceding for us (Daddy, Daddy, Daddy, Daddy, Daddy...). I wish I had time to write more, but I wanted to encourage you that Jesus is in Jonathan and He is in you too! Jesus understands the limitations and frustrations of being human (see John 5:19) and knows and loves you even more than Jonathan does. Maureen

    3. Thank you so much, Maureen. I like the picture you paint there of Jesus praying to His (our) Daddy.
      Oh and I meant to mention -- remember that post about the meds? Jonathan took the new meds for an entire month without any complaint. It was AWESOME, an answer to prayer. Hope your results were good as well. Thanks again.

    4. Hurray Jeannie [insert little dance here]! I have been doing amazingly well too - also an answer to prayer! I just posted something about it
      if you'd like to read more. Bless you! Maureen

    5. I'll go over there right now, Maureen -- thanks for letting me know!


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