During one of the early pioneer schools, testing out what we had learned, I had been paired together with one of the other students. Thirty years later I ran across her again, and she recalled our working together.
Upon my ringing the bell, the householder had asked: “Are you Jehovah?” My companion remembered that I had all but recoiled at the question: ”Oh, no,” I modestly replied. “I would never presume to call myself by the name of the Most High God. I am but a lowly servant of his, trying in my own imperfect way to serve him, etc.” Many times she had reviewed it in her hear, and each time she was so impressed at my abject humility.
It never happened! She had worked it over herself. That will be the day that I fall in for such mock piety. Never trust urban legends.
What I had said when the good-natured woman hollered “Are you Jehovah?”—hollering through the screen door from the far-removed kitchen, for she was distracted cooking, was: “Well—no, actually, I am not.” Whereupon she realized just what she had really said and laughed uproariously at the fine joke.
We did end up having a pretty good discussion, and maybe it is from that circumstance that my companion elevated me to near sainthood. I’m not really all that deserving of it.
I am pretty sure I know how this happened. She is getting me balled up with some brother in a Watchtower account who did say self-effacing things like that—only he wasn’t asked if he was Jehovah, he was asked if he was one of Jehovah’s Witnesses. The Mexican brother was very lowly—of a peasant background—and he was working in an upscale area, an area he would never ever have any business in visiting were it not for the ministry. He manned up for the occasion.
“I try to be sir, it’s hard—to live up to the standards of the Most High God, and to represent His name—it’s hard, but I try.”
It puts an whole different spin on the picture, doesn’t it? He did say it. The circumstances account for it. He was overwhelmed—far outside his comfort zone—whereas I have been known to take the position that even in my comfort zone I am not necessarily comfortable.
Moreover, I have seen it, too, in congregations where I have served. Ones of the urban poor would check out or be drawn into a territory of downright wealthy neighborhoods.They could duck out, for timidity’s sake, and no one would think the lesser of them for it. But they didn’t. They displayed courage the like of which people are not too commonly called upon to display, in order to bring the good news to ones who were light years above them monetarily, if not the slightest bit spiritually.
I admire them to this day for that.