I read a story about a quiet forest dweller who lived high above an Austrian village along the eastern slopes of the Alps. The old gentleman had been hired many years before by a town council to clear away the debris from the pools of water up in the mountain crevices that fed the lovely spring flowing through their town.
With faithful, silent regularity, he patrolled the hills, removed the leaves and branches, and wiped away the silt that would otherwise choke and contaminate the fresh flow of water. By and by, the village became a popular attraction for vacationers. Swans floated along the crystal clear spring, mill wheels of various businesses located along the water, farmlands were naturally irrigated, and the view from restaurants was picturesque beyond description.
Years passed. One evening the town council met for its semiannual meeting. As they reviewed the budget, one man’s eye caught the salary figure being paid to the obscure keeper of the spring. Said the council person, “Who is this person? Why do we keep him on year after year? No one ever sees him. For all we know the strange ranger of the hills is doing us no good. He isn’t necessary any longer!” By a unanimous vote, they dispensed with the old man’s services.
For several weeks nothing changed. By early autumn the trees began to shed their leaves. Small branches snapped off and fell into the pools, hindering the rushing flow of sparkling water. One afternoon someone noticed a slight yellowish-brown tint in the spring. A couple of days later the water was much darker. Within another week, a slimy film covered sections of the water along the banks and a foul odor was soon detected. The mill wheels moved slower, some finally ground to a halt. Swans left, as did the tourists. Disease and sickness soon reached deeply into the village.
Quickly, the embarrassed council called a special meeting. Realizing their gross error in judgment, they hired back the old keeper of the spring. Within a few weeks the river began to clear up. The wheels started to turn, and new life returned to the hamlet in the Alps once again.
Let us not forget that what we do everyday matters. Let me say it again. “We are doers of the word.”
Scripture Reading: 2 Timothy 2:20-21
“In a large house there are utensils not only of gold and silver but also of wood and clay, some for special use, some for ordinary. All who cleanse themselves of the things I have mentioned will become special utensils, dedicated and useful to the owner of the house, ready for every good work.”
What have you done today (will do today) that matters?
How do you prepare yourself to be ready for doing good work?
Who are the workers that go unnoticed?
Holy God, I am a doer of your Word. Keep me attentive to those with need so I can faithfully respond and be useful to you. Amen.
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