From Leo Tolstoy:
“It is within my power either to serve God or not to serve him. Serving him, I add to my good and the good of the whole world. Not serving him, I forfeit my own good, and deprive the world of that good which was in my power to create.”
I am not the only one who creates good in the world – far, far from it. I am one of billions of representations of the Sacred, who work to be the hands and heart and eyes and words of the Creator in the world. But I am the only one of Me in the world, and the only person who can serve and represent the Creator in exactly my way. I do this simply by being true to who I am, to how I was created. When I refuse to do this, the tiny unique contribution, that only I can make, is not made.
It’s therefore incumbent upon me to serve the Creator and the created world in as many small ways as possible. Lighting a candle at the Cathedral last night, and leaving it to hold my prayer – that was serving. Smiling at the bored petrol station attendant who took my money today – that was serving too. Listening to the clients I saw today, taking them seriously and upholding, in my every thought and action and attitude, their right to be who they were created to be – that was serving as well. Tomorrow morning I will sing with all my heart and to the best of my ability, and I am blessed to be serving that way too.
It’s a tiny impact, not even worth noting, that this serving has on a world weighed down by suffering, by degradation, by uncaring and by cruelty. But if we all take our own tiny impact seriously – well, we can make the light shine in the darkness.