Another’s trash = God’s treasure

By Dave Henning / July 6, 2024

“Loving God is not just for contemplatives.  Loving God is laying down your life in service to the Creator so that He can give it back to you.  When we decide that our lives are about that kind of loving, the journey begins.  It changes our trajectory.  It helps us see another’s trash as God’s treasure.  It might send us to the other side of the street or to the other side of the earth.”- Dick Foth

“The King will reply, ‘Truly, I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you die for me.’ “- Matthew 25:40 (NIV)

In Chapter 12 (“Never a Dull Moments”) of A Trip around the Sun, Dick Foth tells the story of Anna Tomaseck.  In 1924, Anna, a nurse from Dayton, Ohio, sailed to India to rescue abandoned and orphaned children.  Anna spent the next fifty-two years of her life there.

Most significantly, early one morning Anna awoke to a banging on her door.  A man stood there with a bundle — a newborn baby girl.  He found the girl when he went to the village dung heap to relieve himself.  Above all, he knew Anna (aka Mama Ji – respected mother) would take care of her.

Finally, a wealthy New Delhi family adopted the girl when she was seven.  At the age of sixteen, her parents sent her to study piano at the London Conservatory of Music.  Ten years later, the young lady performed at Buckingham Palace.

In conclusion, Dick stresses, one way to love God involves loving the world’s discarded, like Anna did.  Loving the:

  • disabled and disconnected.
  • diseased and disenfranchised.
  • displaced and disallowed.
  • categorically or specifically ‘dissed.’

To follow Jesus is the epic adventure.  Because, Dick observes, it turns us inside out, yields miracles, redeems and restores.  Yet, to follow Jesus costs everything.  But we receive the greatest reward.

As Dick states:

‘We will note have Anna’s journey, of course.  But we will have our own.  and if we get it right and have the chance to do it again?  We’d do it a million times!”

Today’s question: When have you viewed another’s trash as God’s treasure?  Please share.

Tomorrow’s blog: “The inverted gospel – unfulfilling”

About the author

Dave Henning

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