I know that there is a pretty good chance that you have committed an act of service that no one noticed. I know that I have. I wish I could say the opposite, but this really miffs me. I would like everything that I do to be appreciated at least with some recognition.
I would like people to see with eyes of recognition. And if they fail to have those in the moment, I cling to the hope that at some point in their day it will finally “click” for them and they’ll realize what they failed to notice before. Then, they’ll come and thank me, or congratulate me on achieving such a lofty heart in my pursuit of godliness. (Whew! Yeah, that would be nice.)
One problem: people don’t do this. I don’t get this. Except, that I ask myself, how many times to I do this favor to others–recognizing, acknowledging, remembering their contribution? (Oh! Better not to ask!)
But, considering how much I desire to be served, how much I treasure my own happiness and well-being, you would think I would do everyone of these things. Except the fact that I expect the good things people do for me. I don’t expect them to do anything else. I’m that into my own benefit. And boy, do I forward it with everything I’ve got!
At the very least, I don’t appreciate the service I get, since that would be admitting it wasn’t deserved. At the very worst, I don’t serve others because I won’t acknowledge my true calling: to put my welfare aside to increase the welfare of others. (Sheesh! I need to apologize to myself for admitting this; either that, or I need to apologize to everyone I berate for exhibiting such me-like characteristics. Wow–so going to need grace for that one!)
But isn’t grace what this whole matter about. Ultimately the greatest service ever done is not remembered or acknowledged by most people. When Christ died to put to death the penalty of our sin, He didn’t do it for anyone but us. He asks for a thank you, but He doesn’t stop there. He ask for a surrendered life; a commitment to live like the greatest service ever forgotten was done for you. This means that you are in His debt to the extent that you don’t remember it and share its joys with others.
From now on we can’t mourn excessively over the services we’ve done without recognition–such pain doesn’t amount to much compared to this. We were served despite the fact that we who should have been servants weren’t. We were served despite the fact that the One who served us should not have served us at all. We were served not with the goal of doing a good deed, but with the goal of redeeming all of our misdeeds. Praise God!