For a while I worked as a janitor for Gospel Publishing House in Springfield, MO. I had already graduated from college but was awaiting my first pastorate. I cleaned workspaces, restrooms, waxed & buffed floors, disposed of the trash, etc. One of the workers’ favorite pastimes in my section was to throw used milk cartons & empty pop cans up on top of the fluorescent lights. Getting them down required requisitioning a ladder, then moving it from area to area to retrieve that day’s catch. The janitorial staff was forbidden to leave notes for the workers … our job was to clean; not to question why.
Ever since those days I’ve been cognizant of the fact that someone has to clean up whatever mess I leave behind. As a janitor I learned to take all such indignities in stride: there’s no use fuming over what I cannot control. But as a consumer I try to cut down on the mess I leave behind in deference to the person coming behind me with a broom or mop. “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble,” James 4:6