Shortly after the 8am service began yesterday morning, an old woman with a walking stick inched her way into the church. She stopped near where I was sitting, looking for a seat. The church was not full at that moment, although those seats near the aisle had been taken, one of them by me. There was a vacancy next to me, but I made no move to alert the woman, feeling that there were seats she could choose and it didn’t have to be that one. A middle-aged woman on the other side of the aisle signaled the expectant senior to take the seat next to her and, after the old woman thankfully obliged, helped her place her walking stick.
The woman’s kind attitude and gesture filled me with shame. There were, as I said, seats available and it would seem that I didn’t have to do anything. But then a little voice deep down told me that the right thing to do would have been for me to move in and vacate my seat near the aisle. I simply wasn’t caring enough.
At that moment, I heard the reading of Philippians 2:5-11:
“In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus:
Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage; rather, he made himself nothing taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to death — even death on a cross! Therefore God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.”