It was during the time of Guru Arjan Dev. A sangat was coming from Kabul to Amritsar for darshan of the Sikh Guru. The body of holy men met a Sikh and his wife on their way. This Sikh performed a lot of sewa for the group. He massaged their legs, fanned them as they rested, fetched water for them. The next day they proceeded with the Sikh to Amritsar.
THE VOICE WITHIN
As they reached Darbar Sahib, the jathedar of the Kabul group asked a few boys to take care of their shoes. None of the boys was ready to do it, as they all were eager to be the first one to have darshan of Guru Arjan Dev. At last the Sikh volunteered to do it.
The group went inside and waited, but the Sikh spiritual leader didn’t show up. Then the jathedar went ahead and asked Baba Buddha where Guruji was. This is how their conversation went:
Baba Buddha: Guruji has gone to see the sangat coming from Kabul.
Jathedar: But we are the sangat from Kabul!
Baba: Didn’t you meet Guruji?
Jathedar: No, we didn’t! But we met a Sikh and his wife and they performed a lot of sewa for us.
Baba: Where is he now?
Jathedar: We left him to look after the shoes of the sangat.
Baba Buddha, followed by the jathedar and the rest of the sangat, went outside to look for the Sikh. They saw him cleaning all the shoes with his own chola.
It was none other than Guru Arjan Dev himself.
Taking away the pair of shoes Guruji was cleaning, Baba Buddha cried out: “Why are you doing this?”. The entire sangat was now in tears.
Guru Arjan Dev smiled and said: “Babaji, I haven’t seen Guru k Dev, but you have. Take a look again at this pair of shoes”.
Baba Buddha then looked closely at the pair of shoes, and since he had been with Guru k, he immediately recognized that it was the great saint’s pair of shoes.
This is why when a true Sikh performs sewa at the Gurdwara, he does it with the thought that who knows who is visiting the Gurdwara that day! Who knows which Gurmukh soul will come that day...