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Oh Really Mop Bucket and My Time

Oh Really Mop Bucket and My Time

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Published by Herm Zandman
Many people prioritize emotionally, that is according to appetites and preferences. This article stresses the importance to make principled decisions in terms of time and resources management.
Many people prioritize emotionally, that is according to appetites and preferences. This article stresses the importance to make principled decisions in terms of time and resources management.

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Published by: Herm Zandman on Sep 10, 2012
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Oh ReallyMop & Bucket and My Time“That toilet is awfully filthy,” the student remarked in passing to the Christian teacherscollege principal and then continued on his way to have lunch with fellow students.After lunch he walked through the same corridor, past the same toilet. He noticed someactivity in the toilet area. He sneaked a peek through the half open door and, to hisastonishment, saw the principal masterfully working a mop and bucket, cleaning that‘awfully filthy toilet!’ It was a very pensive student who continued on his way to hisnext lecture.When I heard about this episode, I was reminded of the saying that car maker HenryFord had behind his desk and which would stare every visitor to his office right in theface. The plague stated: Don’t find fault, find a solution! It was his view point that toomany people find it easy to gripe about what is wrong, but leave it to others to sweat onthe remedy. He knew about the twenty-eighty rule which says that eighty percent of thework is done by twenty percent of the people – and he took issue with it. He was amember of the Protestant Episcopal Church, a breakaway movement from the Churchof England. This church was very active in the Social Gospel Movement, applyingBiblical ethics to social problems such as poverty, inequality, liquor, crime, racialtensions, slums, bad hygiene, child labour, weak labour unions, poor schools, and thedanger of war. Above all they opposed rampant individualism and called for a sociallyaware religion. Henry lived a life that was keenly governed by actively putting his ownhand to the plough and encouraging others to do the same, as he was committed to theurging of the Apostle Paul in Romans 12:1 to be a living sacrifice in God’s service. Herealised that he was called to exhibit the goodness of God to this world by being animitator of Jesus in all of life and in all relationships (1 Corinthians 11:1).“It is easy to dodge our responsibilities, but we cannot dodge the consequences of dodging our responsibilities,” said Lord Josiah Charles Stamp, a Baptist believer in 19
th
century England. He too was a firm believer in putting in effort and time to be a healinginfluence in a broken world. And he was in tune with the famous German author Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, who said, “Let everyone sweep in front of his own door,and the whole world will be clean.”What has all this fascinating detail to do with our Christian living here and now? Theissue is one of almost timeless relevance actually. These men of old were formed intheir thinking by Biblical principles as they lived their lives in church and society. Thisis the point of commonality between them then and us now – or should be. To our shame we must say that the twenty-eighty rule works to a large extent in the church too;to our shame we must say that we consider ourselves too often owners of ‘our’ time,suppressing the notion that time is a gift from God to be used to His glory (not negatingthe use of some of it for entertainment and such like, but stressing the issue of priority).In a society which promotes career building, hedonism and pleasure seeking, sacrificialgiving is hard to practise, especially when cleaning other people’s metaphorical toilets.Yet, in imitating Christ, we are asked to look in the mirror seriously and assess whether we are really such who are concerned for the greater welfare of the Body of Christ towhich we belong. Are we floating along in church life as it is being organised by othersaround us, or are we actually positive contributors to the organic functioning of the

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