Jesus Meets Miss Muffet

Blog / Produced by The High Calling
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Sitting on my private tuffet, I got a little huffy when I heard the news.

The director looked me straight in the eye, smiled a breezy smile, and said, "Oh, and don't forget to come early to make coffee. And bring some home-baked cookies."

My throat tightened, and my own smile faded. Who did I look like? Miss Muffet, come to share some curds and whey? Was there something in my demeanor that suggested I'd signed up to play hostess? I signed up to teach the Bible. Period. Let the snack people do the food stuff. They had put their names on the snack line. They were prepared to boil, chop, pour, and serve. I was prepared to dish out spiritual truth.

I went so far as to say it. "Can't the snack people do that? I'm really busy with the study preparations."

Now the director frowned. Clearly, she did not expect the snack people to do this job. They were going to be focusing on bushels of apples and boxes of graham crackers, to dole them out to more than a hundred kids. I was going to have to step up to the plate, so to speak, and serve the coffee and cookies. But I was not happy about it, nor did I plan to be.

It's true that I was part of a team, made up of men and women from our church. Each year, we take time off from our work to bring a soul-stirring summer camp to the community. We lay aside our regular jobs as managers and executives, homemakers and nurses, and join this group effort. Each person signs up for certain responsibilities, but as with any team event, there are gray areas where someone has to step in and do the unexpected odd job.

So here it was. The odd job of providing food for an adult Bible study that would run concurrently with the kids' program. But I was not in the mood for team spirit, not if it meant this stereotypical domestic service.

Instead, I braced myself to show up with coffee and cookies the next day, toting a secret attitude as creepy as Miss Muffet's spider.

Then Jesus sat down beside me.

That night, as I prepared the next day's study, I opened to the theme verse. ". . . the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many" (Mark 10:45). Not to be served, but to serve. To give, as a ransom.

I was chastened. Jesus gave his whole life, not just spiritual words or teachings, but his whole life. He let people like you and me shatter him to pieces so we could be put back together again.

Needless to say, I got the moral he was speaking to my childish heart. He served us so we could turn around and serve others, even in the simplest of team tasks, even in the unexpected odd jobs—whether they be part of a summer event or, more often, part of our regular workplace realities.

The next day I apologized to the director. Then I served up coffee and cookies. With a smile.

Read more from L. L. Barkat at her blog Seedings in Stone.