Recently I received a prayer request regarding one of our international missionaries. She serves in India and she was visiting with a neighbor with whom she has been sharing good news about Christ.
As the missionary was talking and watching her neighbor prepare a meal she noticed that the neighbor was doing something unusual. The neighbor used a very old, flat basket with which to sift rice before cooking. The neighbor was preparing the basket for the rice by smearing something in the bottom of the basket, which looked a lot like mud. The missionary inquired, “What are you doing?” The neighbor replied, “The basket has holes. The cow dung fills them in.”
The missionary clarified, “Did you say cow dung?” and the neighbor replied, “Yes, cow dung.” The missionary went on to eat the meal with her neighbor.
For the sake of the Gospel the missionary had to put aside personal preferences and graciously handle a situation that involved cow dung.
The prayer request was asking God for grace to deal with unpleasant situations so that advancing the Kingdom might continue.
We who live in the civilized West would never consume rice prepared in a dung lined basket. However, we often have to deal with people and persevere through circumstances that feel like, smell like and even taste like dung.
The above story is why I like to hang out with our missionaries. They consistently make decisions that subjugate personal preferences for the sake of the Gospel and that’s the way that I want to live also.
As someone once put it, “We’ve only one life, twill soon be past. Only what’s done for Christ will last.”
Let’s purposefully deal with life’s dung.