"Te Matua a Pohe" is the multi-million dollar drawbridge that opened here in Whangarei less than a year ago, winning international design awards and putting our little town on the map!
The bridge allows for both car and foot traffic, so I quite a enjoy a stroll across every now and again. On Saturday, a friend and I took a walk, surprised to find ourselves on the bridge approach as bells started ringing and lights began flashing, signaling that it would soon be raised to accommodate for a sea faring vessel below. Traffic was stopped and barricades were lowered as a mass of concrete and steel projected itself to the sky- remarkable to watch, really!
As we watched the bridge raise we looked to the right and left to find the reason for such a spectacle. Why was the bridge going up at such an odd time of the morning? We didn't see any big barges or cruise ships, or anything worth all the effort of raising this massive structure. The we saw it: a tiny little sailboat towing an inflatable life-raft, sailed by a solitary old man heading out to sea.
What? All this ruckus for. . .THAT?
It was almost comical. This was about the most exciting thing to happen in Whangarei on a Saturday morning! All this show, all this work. . . for something so small. Why?
And then it hit me. Of course! This was a clear picture of servant hood, a lesson in self-sacrifice. God requires of all of us to humble ourselves before God and others, considering no task too small and no person too "insignificant" to serve and bless.
One would have expected all that bridge-raising work for a big boat that produced a bit of glamour and show, but here we saw an equal amount of effort given to the "little guy" just going about his daily work, minding his own business, not seeking attention. It looks a lot like Christ-like servant-hood to me, a lot like washing feet, caring for the sick, and doing hard things that may never get you recognition in this life.
Many are willing to go out of their way to serve and acknowledge the rich and famous, the ones with status. Are you willing to roll up your sleeves, do a bit of hard work, and pull out all the stops for the "average Joe"?