How long has it been since you and the gardener and I came to work in the master’s house? You have been given specific instructions regarding food and meals, he has been given specific instructions regarding horticulture, and I have been given specific instructions regarding the children. In spite of our different functions, we work in the same house, for the same family and there is a certain code of conduct required of us all: how we treat the family we work for, how we treat each other, and how we present the family when we leave the house. We each do our own parts and adhere to what is expected of us: you cook, he gardens, and I care for the children.
Of course there is the small problem of the butler. He oversees the smooth running of the household, and while that may occasionally mean getting onto one of the staff if we are lagging behind, he has taken it upon himself more and more to micromanage us. He insists on us doing every thing his way, even though many of the things he insists on us doing have not been specified by the master. It seems our butler has forgotten that this is not his house, and he is not the master.
No, he is constantly in the kitchen, directing you which spices to put in your dishes, even though cooking is your function. When he isn’t in the kitchen, he’s outside, rejecting the color of the flowers the gardener has just planted. Or if he’s not pestering the two of you, he’s up in the nursery telling me the children should be spending more time on educational pursuits, not just coloring.
It’s sad, because if any one of us dares point out that the master has given us freedom in these areas, he thunders about how we are disrupting the household operations, that we have no respect for his position, and that we must be disloyal to the master. And we wonder how it is that the butler who oversees the household operations can be so blind to the fact that we all have different functions, and necessarily so.
I guess it all goes back to the fact that this is not his house, and he is not the master. He is every bit the servant that each of us is, and yet he seems to think we cannot access the master and the master’s heart for our distinct areas of the house. Except we can, and we did, when we were first hired. The master laid out his expectations for us and our roles in his house, and if he thinks something needs to change, he is more than to come to us directly and speak to us. He may choose to relay something through the butler on occasion, but because the butler cannot always be trusted, we must always verify it is indeed the master speaking.
After all, this is the master’s house. What he says, goes.
I don’t know about you, or Gardener, but as the nanny, I’m not going to worry about what the butler thinks about my activities with the children. He is just another servant. I am the nanny, and the children are my charge from the master. If the butler has any legitimate concerns about my jeopardizing the children’s well-being (and I assure you, he does not), he may take them up with the master. The master is the only one who can take my charge away.
Until such time as that happens (which I don’t expect it will), I will go on reveling in what the master has given me to do. I advise you and Gardener to do the same. I am certain that is what delights the master more than obsessing over little details that have no bearing on household operations.
“Who are you to judge another’s servant? To his own master he stands or falls. Indeed, he will be made to stand, for God is able to make him stand” (Romans 14:4 NKJV).