Sunday, March 25, 2012

The Educated Young Man And The Shoes.

The Educated Man
And The Shoes
I was teaching a lesson on pride to a class of high school kids and found this story to help them understand the Christian motivation for humility.
Back when the emperor ruled in China there was a young man who lived in a city. His family was wealthy and had many servants so the young man never had to dirty his hands with common work. Because he came from a wealthy family he was able to receive a fine education. He excelled in all his studies and was considered one of the brightest students at the university. He was very cultured and was careful to observe all the customs of upper society. This man became a Christian and as a follower of Jesus he wanted to serve his Lord, so he joined a mission hospital that was run by a missionary and there the young man trained to become a nurse.

He was given many interesting opportunities to help people and being educated he was able to understand much of the medicine and science. He was excited to be able to serve Jesus by serving people whom Jesus loved. He was respected by patients and staff.

I have never cleaned shoes it is below me
One day the missionary doctor brought to the young man some muddy filth covered shoes and asked him to clean them.

"What?" decried the young man. "No, not me I have been educated. I understand science and medicine. I am from the upper class we do not clean shoes, have someone else do this."

"Everyone else is busy elsewhere. I need you to clean these shoes."

"I have never cleaned shoes. It is below me I will not do this."

The missionary brought out his worn Bible, and read from the Gospel of John. "And supper being ended, the devil having now put into the heart of Judas Iscariot, Simon's son, to betray him; Jesus knowing that the Father had given all things into his hands, and that he was come from God, and went to God; He riseth from supper, and laid aside his garments; and took a towel, and girded himself. After that he poureth water into a;basin and began to wash the disciples' feet, and to wipe them with the towel wherewith he was girded. Then cometh he to Simon Peter and Peter saith unto him, Lord dost thou wash my feet? Jesus answered and said unto him, What I do thou knowest not now; but thou shalt know hereafter. Peter saith unto him, Thou salt never wash my feet. Jesus answered him, If I wash thee not thou has no part with me. Simon Peter saith unto him, Lord, not my feet only, but also my hands and my head. Jesus saith to him, He that is washed needeth not save to wash his feet, but is clean everywhit: and ye are clean but not all. For he knew who should betray him; Therefore said he, Ye are not all clean. So after he had washed their feet, and had taken his garments and was set down again, he said unto them, Know ye what I have done to you? You call me Master and Lord and ye say well; for so I am. If I then, your Lord and Master, have washed your feet; ye also ought to wash one another's feet. For I have given you and example, that ye should do as I have done to you.*"  Then the missionary left the room without saying a word leaving the open Bible on the table.
He washed the disciples feet

Later that day the cleaned shoes were brought to the missionary by a now very humble young man. He set the clean shiny shoes down on the table and said, "If Jesus can wash the disciples feet then I can clean shoes."  The young educated man became known as the most willing worker in the hospital who was happy to scrub floors, clean wounds, take out trash, clean dishes, and do whatever lowly task offered, because so doing he was following his Savior.

*John 13:2-16 JKV

(C)Adron Dozat