by Max Lucado
Perhaps youâ€™ve never placed the word courteous next to Christ. I hadnâ€™t until I wrote this chapter.
But you know how you never notice double-cab red trucks until your friend says he wants oneâ€”then you see a dozen of them? I had never thought much about the courtesy of Christ before, but as I began looking, I realized that Jesus makes Emily Post look like Archie Bunker.
He always knocks before entering. He doesnâ€™t have to. He owns your heart. If anyone has the right to barge in, Christ does. But he doesnâ€™t. That gentle tap you hear? Itâ€™s Christ. â€œBehold, I stand at the door and knockâ€? (Revelations 3:20 NASB). And when you answer, he awaits your invitation to cross the threshold.
And when he enters, he always brings a gift. Some bring Chianti and daisies. Christ brings â€œthe gift of the Holy Spiritâ€? (Acts 2:38). And, as he stays, he serves. â€œFor even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serveâ€? (Mark 10:45 NIV). If youâ€™re missing your apron, youâ€™ll find it on him. Heâ€™s serving the guests as they sit (John 13:4â€“5). He wonâ€™t eat until heâ€™s offered thanks, and he wonâ€™t leave until the leftovers are put away (Matthew 14:19â€“20).
He is courteous enough to tell you his name (Exodus 3:15) and to call you by yours (John 10:3). And when you talk, he never interrupts. He listens.
He is even on time. Never late. Never early. If youâ€™re checking your watch, itâ€™s because youâ€™re on a different itinerary. â€œThere is a time for everythingâ€? (Ecclesiastes 3:1). And Christ stays on schedule.
He even opens doors for you. Paul could preach at Troas because â€œthe Lord had opened a doorâ€? (2 Corinthians 2:12 NIV). When I asked my dad why men should open doors for women, his answer was one word: â€œrespect.â€? Christ must have abundant respect for you.
He knocks before he enters. He always brings a gift. Food is served. The table is cleared. Thanks are offered. He knows your name and tells you his, and here is one more.
He pulls out the chair for you. â€œHe raised us up with Christ and gave us a seat with him in the heavensâ€? (Ephesians 2:6).
My wife has a heart for single moms. She loves to include a widow or divorcÃ©e at the table when we go to a restaurant. Through the years Iâ€™ve noticed a common appreciation from them. They love it when I pull out their chair. More than once they have specifically thanked me. One mom in particular comes to mind. â€œMy,â€? she blushed, brushing the sudden moisture from her eye, â€œitâ€™s been a while since anyone did that.â€?
Has it been a while for you as well? People can be so rude. We snatch parking places. We forget names. We interrupt. We fail to show up. Could you use some courtesy? Has it been a while since someone pulled out your chair?
Then let Jesus. Donâ€™t hurry through this thought. Receive the courtesy of Christ. Heâ€™s your groom. Does not the groom cherish the bride? Respect the bride? Honor the bride? Let Christ do what he longs to do.
For as you receive his love, youâ€™ll find it easier to give yours. As you reflect on his courtesy to you, youâ€™ll be likely to offer the same.
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From: A Love Worth Giving
Copyright (Thomas Nelson, 2002) Max Lucado
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