Muffler Burns and Servant Leadership

22 Oct

Usually people are rewarded for their good deeds. It’s why they do them every once in awhile. It’s that extra pat on the back and the satisfied feeling of being noticed. Only she didn’t get a pat on the back. More like a burn on the leg, judging by the golfball-sized patch of raw just above her ankle. And that golfball might as well have had my name written across it since it was my endless cough that prompted her secret little goodwill mission to the pharmacy on the other side of the city, one of the few she knew of that actually sold cough drops. The mission required a moto, which requires extra caution on the part of a woman when riding in a skirt, which caused her to choose haste over safety upon disembarking, which brought her right leg into contact with a hot muffler. Hence the golfball. Hence my autograph on her Cambodian souvenir. She didn’t tell me the story until a day later and even then I had to drag it out of her.

Why she does these things, I don’t know, thinking of everyone else before herself and serving her heart out. Actually, let me rephrase that. I know why. I’m just not always sure how. Once upon a time, during the course of our Cambodian summer, I entered some kind of secret competition. My acts of service against hers. For awhile I was even going for the one-step-ahead thing, but that didn’t last very long. Besides, I don’t think she ever keeps track. That’s one of the reasons I love her so much.

There’s this Jesus principle I see in little sister. It’s in Matthew 23 and might as well have her name in the margin next to the red lettered verse. This principle comes alive in her every day life, whether it’s in a slum in Southeast Asia or a trailer park in Honey Brook or our home in Bird in Hand, and it’s the balance of the servant-leader: one who becomes great in the Kingdom because they’ve learned to be a servant in this one. She leads strongly because she serves well and she stoops low to push others higher and she smiles wide in the invisible work. It’s a principle I want learned deep and stretched full in my own life and I’m grateful for a younger sister who lets me follow her as she follows Christ.


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2 Responses to “Muffler Burns and Servant Leadership”

  1. Clarita October 22, 2011 at 12:49 pm #

    I love this… so so much. Because it’s so very true – of both of you. How I ever am was privileged to be a sister to some of the greatest women I know, I have no idea.

  2. Abby October 22, 2011 at 3:44 pm #

    Amen, Ervy. 🙂

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