I was cupbearer to the king. Nehemiah 1:11
Six simple, yet powerful words.
Nehemiah was cupbearer to the most powerful man in Persia. Day after day he silently took his position, bringing a cup to the king. His role was simple.
The king may not have even known his name. One day, the King noticed his face. Nehemiah was sad. The king asked him why he was downcast and Nehemiah told him about his city lying in ruins. In the end, the king allowed Nehemiah to return to his city with protection and provisions to rebuild the wall of the city of God. He eventually made Nehemiah governor over the area.
He was cupbearer to the King. Who are you a cupbearer to? You may not take a cup to a king, but you have roles where you serve others. You have roles that seem insignificant. You quietly move in and out of people’s lives. Let me tell you a secret: If you’re a child of the King, there’s nothing you do that’s insignificant. If you carry His burdens on your heart like Nehemiah did, your presence is felt by others even if you’re unaware of it.
You’re a cupbearer to the King.
As a servant of God, whatever you do has the potential to reveal His honor and glory. This is His purpose for your life. He created you to reflect Him. He created you to influence others, to bear His cup of grace, mercy and love to those around you. Who are you bearing the cup to right now?
If you’re a parent of little ones, you’re a sippy-cup bearer, nurturing the most precious commodities in the King’s palace. If you’re a caretaker of older parents, you’re a cupbearer to the most honored people in God’s eyes. If you’re a humble, quiet leader, you’re influencing others whether you’re aware of it or not.
Bearing the cup of the king to others is a significant job. Do you ever feel like you’re not doing enough, that your life is insignificant or that others have the opportunity to do great things for God? A quote I read in Elisabeth Elliot’s book, Keep A Quiet Heart, impacted me greatly as a mom who thought my only purpose in life was to pour apple juice into Tupperware cups.
“The person who would do great things well must practice daily on little ones, and she who would have the assistance of the Almighty in important acts, must be daily and hourly accustomed to consult His will in the minor affairs of life.” Emily Judson, wife to missionary Adoniram Judson.
This quote has been on my bathroom mirror for years. It encourages me when daily tasks and insignificant moments takes my time and energy. It’s a reminder that when you’re faithful to God in the quiet and humble moments, He sees and notes your obedience. When you prove you’re faithful in the simple moments, God knows you’re ready to do the big jobs when the time is ripe.
I’ve learned God’s timing is perfect. Nehemiah just thought he was doing his job as errand boy, but God had him in the presence of the King at just the right time to carry out a great and difficult task. God allowed Nehemiah to earn favor with the one who provided all the necessities to get the Lord’s work done. You may think no one’s watching your character in the little things, but people are. God may use one of those quiet moments to usher you into an opportunity to display His greatness.
You are cupbearer to The King. There’s no greater calling. No matter how you’re serving Him now, it’s not misplaced, misused or unnoticed service. One day, you’ll get a glimpse in heaven of the lives you’ve changed by faithfully fulfilling your role of pouring grace and love on His behalf to others. As you’re faithful in the small things, God will be faithful to use you for His glory in ways you may never know. The greatest epitaph we can have should say,
I was cupbearer to the King.
What are you waiting on, wondering where God will use you? How can you faithfully serve God in where He’s placed you, so you can be ready when He calls you for broader influence?