David said, ‘The Lord who delivered me from the paw of the lion and from the paw of the bear will deliver me from the hand of this Philistine,'” (1 Sam. 17:37 ESV).
When I was a janitor in the Prayer Room, I used to struggle with feeling invisible. Unnoticed, unimportant. No one would mention me on their thank-you list. Everyone expected me to do my job. It wasn’t a gift or a ministry I was giving. It was an expectation. A duty. One that fell on me because, well, this was a place reserved to house lowlifes like me.
I had no car, no money, no future. I didn’t have a family or a long list of supporters. I didn’t play on the worship team or teach a class.
I was just… me. Dressed like a homeless beggar every day. Smelling like one too. I’d wipe counters, walls, toilets, trashes. I’d pick up trash, clean spills, vacuum floors, mop tile.
At the end of the day, my collection of grime–my day’s handiwork–was hoisted on my back and carried out to the dumpster. Then I’d clock out and walk home.
One day, my coworker confessed that she felt much the same way. “I feel like I’m scum doing this job. It’s really hard not to think that. But I do. It’s depressing.”
I said, “Jesus was a janitor.”
“Really?” her eyes lit up but looked confused.
“Yeah. He was like these perfectly clean rags. He took on everyone’s dirt onto himself to make them clean. Think about it–without janitors, the place would be run down in a hurry and unusable. It would have to be abandoned and the ministry shut down. Then he takes on that big load of trash and throws it out for good.”
She hugged me with tears in her eyes and then continued her work with her head held high.
Being a janitor taught me a lot about God. Partly out of boredom, I’ll admit. I just wanted to make the most of it, as David did. In his day, shepherds were the scum of society. But he did it with God.
David met God in his mundane shepherd life and from there discovered he could slay giants.
I don’t think there was anything super spiritual about David. I think he just assumed God would show up. “Well, it’s just you and me now, God.” It started as simply a way to pass the time.
Think about your work. Imagine Jesus doing the same for you, in your heart. Everything from cleaning a dish, changing a diaper, to rocking your child to sleep.
If you want to see Jesus in your life and get to know him better, try looking into the mirror.