When I was in high school, I had a crush on this gorgeous guy: thick wavy hair, brown eyes like Bambi, perfect white teeth that flashed with an impish grin. Personality wise, he was funny, warm, engaging, friendly — at least that’s what he seemed like from a distance, since the closest I ever reached his arena was across the music room where he was a tenor in the choir, I an alto.
When I mentioned him to my mother, she poured ice water over my dreams:
“Him? You’ll never get anywhere with him. He’s from one of the first families of this little town, and we’re nothing. Forget about it.”
Well, this didn’t go over well in my 17-year-old world, where we’re all the same, because we’re all human beings, and nobody is really “better” than another person — but in the real world, that’s the system, baby. And by the real world, I mean the Christian arena as well, an arena that has been infiltrated and influenced by many deceptive practices and beliefs that it purports to deny.
Years ago, my family attended a little church in a little town, and within that little church, there were important people who had important jobs in the community as well. Superficially, they acted as if they were just like the rest of us, but when it came down to it, we were in the alto section, watching them across the room with the tenors. In ten years we never moved past a Sunday smile and brief handclasp. Other people did, I noticed, even though they were socially insignificant in the work world, but it seemed to require a substantial number of volunteer hours in their off time — painting walls, attending small groups, participating in leadership seminars, babysitting the leaders’ kids. Getting noticed by an important person — in the world or in the church — is a lot of work.
And yet, we Christians are the foolish things of the world, the weak, the lowly — or at least, that’s our job description in 1 Corininthians 1:26-29:
“. . . God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong. He chose the lowly things of this world and the despised things — and the things that are not — to nullify the things that are, so that no one may boast before him.”
While like any human, I think fairly well of myself: I’m not beautiful; I never have been, but I’m smart, and I’ve always had a problem in thinking I’m not wise. But I know I’m not rich, powerful, influential, or important, and time and circumstances continue to emphasize to me what I am: I’m ordinary, like a fisherman, or a carpenter’s son.
And that carpenter’s son never worried about what people thought about Him; His whole focus was on His Father’s will.
Is that our focus?
If you’re a nobody, an ordinary person, an insignificant human being who does your job and loves your family and talks to God and asks Him what you, of all people, could do this day for Him — be encouraged. By recognizing that you’re ordinary, and not deceiving yourself into thinking that you are something more than you are, you can be useful — because you listen as opposed to doing all the talking.
In Jesus’ days, it was the Pharisees, who preened and pranced and prayed and sought after the accolades and the worship of other men; things don’t change, just the names we use to describe them. Thank God that you’re ordinary — all Christians are — and humble yourself before Him, because He, my friend, is extraordinary, and He wants to walk side by side with you, throughout your entire life and eternity.
Steve Henderson’s inspirational art is featured in all of my articles. My
Norwegian Artist’s bold use of color and creative way of looking at the world extols the beauty that God set up on this earth.
You can find Steve’s work in a variety of places, formats, and price ranges, because art is an important part of all of our lives.
Find and buy Steve’s art in the following online venues:
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