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Charles H. Townes, who won a Nobel Prize for his work in laser technology, opened a talk with a disclaimer: "It’s like the beaver told the rabbit as they stared up at the immense wall of the Hoover Dam: ’No, I didn’t actually build it myself. But it was based on an idea of mine.’"

We are often stuck on ourselves and like to pat ourselves on the back when in reality, if we’ve done something good in life, it’s because of the grace of God. It’s because God has been at work in us.

ILL.- President McKinley was considering the appointment of a minister to a foreign country. There were two candidates, their qualifications almost equal. Which one did he appoint? The President related a story of an incident that had decided his choice.

Years before, when he was a Representative, he boarded a streetcar one night and took the last vacant seat. Shortly afterward, an old washerwoman entered carrying a heavy basket. She walked the length of the car and stood in the aisle, no one offering her a seat.

One of the men, whom the President was to consider later, was sitting in a seat opposite where she was standing. He shifted the paper so as not to see her. Mr. McKinley walked down the aisle, picked up her basket of washing, and gave her his seat. The candidate never knew that this little act of selfishness had deprived him of perhaps the crowning honor of a lifetime.

This story of selfishness or self-centeredness is so very true of our society today. Most people today live for self with no thought of others or care for others.

ILL.- J. Sidlow Baxter tells of an incident that occurred in his home. It so happened that directly in line with a picture of Christ was a mirror. If one were to stand a certain way, the person’s image would blot out the picture. Dr. Baxter’s little daughter was one day standing before the mirror and happened to stand directly in line with the picture. When she moved, the picture again appeared.

She ran excitedly to her Daddy and said, "Daddy, I can see Jesus when I am looking at myself."

This is the way it’s supposed to be but often we stand in the way of the picture of Jesus in our lives and HE CAN’T BE SEEN. People can only see us. But somehow we need to get out of the picture so people can see Jesus. HE IS THE IMPORTANT ONE.

(Steve Shepherd "In This You Greatly Rejoice" 1/19/2009)

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