Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Conscientiousness in small things.

A woman employed a man to paint a house she had just built. The painter was a member of a Christian church, active in the prayer-meeting and in church work, and apparently a man of exemplary piety. His work was seemingly well done, but it was afterwards discovered that he had slighted his work in places where he thought the neglect would not be noticed. His employer remarked: “I have discounted the man’s piety and prayers ever since. I prefer Christians who will fill up the nail holes with putty, and paint the tops of the doors in the upper story.” How many professed Christians fail to realize that piety has a connection with paint and putty – that the little things of life are the truest, as they are the severest tests of Christian character.

The painter Opie replied to a query as to how he mixed his colors, ‘With brains, sir.’ The best type of Christian character must be that of the man who mixes his daily work with conscience, and strives to do everything, even the most insignificant, as unto the Lord. Until this shall be the standard of everyday Christian living, there must be a great deal done in the way of discounting piety and prayers.
Christian Union.

I like this quote, although there is needed wisdom on what to attend to and what can be left. I'm reminded when I was asked to sweep the floor of a warehouse when I was employed in a factory at about age 19. I swept the floor fastidiously, as though my father was watching over my shoulder, which he often was when I worked for him. But the foreman came up to me and said, "Fred, this is a warehouse not a hospital." Suggesting I was overdoing it and needed to get the task done and on to more pressing work. Lesson learned.

Photo by Naret Visesvongsa


Candice Houston said...

That balance, Fred, that balance...that is the difficult part!

Donna said...

I love the last paragraph of the lesson learned about over doing it sometimes.

Such a significant parallel to our own relationship with God and how a spirit of religion can start out well-meaning.

I could write a whole blog on that!

Donna :)

Joseph Pulikotil said...

Hi Fred :)

Very interesting post.

This is a clear warning that we should listen to our conscience. Very often we over rule our conscience when we think that no one will notice our minor faults deliberately done by us.

Thanks for sharing.

Best wishes for the new year 2009.

FCB said...

Hi Candice, Donna, and Joseph,
I hope you all had a good New Year's eve.
Yes, finding the balance, this is a difficult task for the Christian. And like Donna said, this parralels our relationship with God. We can become slovenly or legalistic. Oh the balance there as well. Thank God he gives us a conscience to follow and one quickened by His Spirit, but we can overrun or lag behind with all the helps.
God bless,