When I was twenty years old, I joined a Celibate Brotherhood. We were fifteen guys who lived in one big house, prayed two hours a day, and served God everywhere. But one thing I’ll never forget was doing the household chores together. Each guy was assigned to do one chore—and we we’re supposed to do it for the glory of God. One brother was assigned to clean the living room. Another guy was assigned to clean in the kitchen. Another guy was assigned to clean in the bedroom.
Me? Of course, God gave me the best—I was assigned to clean the toilet.
The Celibate Brothers gave me the WHAT (vision): Clean the toilet really well; They also gave me the WHY (values): To clean the toilet really well for the glory of God; Finally, they gave me the HOW (vehicle)…
One of the older brothers brought me to the toilet and said, “This is how to clean the toilet for the glory of God.”
Two unthinkable things happened that day.
First, he knelt down in front of the toilet bowl and dunked his hand into the hole. To this day, I can still picture it in my mind: I saw his hand (holding the sponge) disappear into the toilet water. And he scrubbed, scrubbed, and scrubbed… He also worked on the inner rim of the bowl like the toilet bowl was made of gold. Man, did he make that thing shine—He was really serious in doing it for the glory of God.
The second unthinkable thing happened. He offered me the sponge, still dripping in all its glory, and said, “It’s your turn, Bo. Do it for Jesus.”
At that moment, I wanted to be like Peter. I wanted to deny I ever knew Jesus.
Just kidding. I grit my teeth, knelt down, and for the very first time in my entire life, I did the grossest thing. I dunked my hand in the hole and scrubbed.
Would you believe? I did that chore everyday for an entire year. And I grew to love it. I really did. Soon, it was MY toilet bowl and MY sponge. It became my quiet time with the Lord. Every night, I loved kneeling on the tiles in front of the “white throne” and shining it for the glory of God. It was absolutely good for my humility.
I was already preaching a lot during those days. So I was holding a microphone by day but a toilet sponge by night. The combination was superb. By day, I was on stage in front of adoring crowds, but by night, I was alone, crouched in front of a toilet bowl and scrubbing its insides. I was doing both activities with joy and passion. I was doing both for love. I was doing both for Jesus.
Everyday, people would line up just to shake my hand. Oh if they only knew what I held in the evening…
One Saturday, something unforgettable happened.
Saturday evenings were very special in the Brothers house. First, we pray a lot; Second, we eat a festive dinner; Third, we do the dishes together while singing happy songs. One is in charge of soaping, another is in charge of rinsing, and the other brothers are in charge of drying and putting the dishes back in cupboards.
As all the Brothers were singing loudly, “Alive, alive, alive forever, my Jesus is alive…” I was soaping the plates with a sponge. I looked at the sponge I was using. It looked oddly familiar. That was when I froze. I realized it was MY sponge. (Obviously, I knew my sponge as I used it daily.) What was it doing in the kitchen sink? I always left it in the toilet! But it was there in all its dripping glory.
I looked around me. The Brothers were all happy, singing, joking with one another, oblivious at the disaster happening at that moment. I decided not to tell them and continued to soap. Ignorance is bliss.
By the way, that last part of my story has nothing to do with my message to you today. I just wanted to make you laugh.
If you’re clear with your vision, values, and vehicle, people will naturally follow you. Whether you have a title or not.
May your dreams come true,
P.S. It’s my birthday tomorrow! I’m turning 21… plus 30 years (ha ha!). 51 glorious years. It’s also not a coincidence that I’ve written nearly 50 books, most of them bestsellers. But these books are bestsellers not because I’m a great author, or because I’m a super wise man. These books became bestsellers because they spoke powerfully to people like YOU!
And to thank you all for supporting our print media ministry, Kerygma Books is holding another great big sale, with great big discounts up to 40% OFF* when you shop online at www.KerygmaBooks.com/shop.
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