Being The Answer…Or Not Being The Answer

Sometimes I kid some of my middle school students who demonstrate moments of entitlement. I point my finger at my imaginary dot and say “This is you.” I then draw an invisible circle around that dot and say, “And this is the world. What you’re telling me is that the world revolves around you.”

Usually that comment causes giggles from others and a smile on the face of the entitled one, followed by a few moments of sputtering and stammering.

Our culture has a high opinion of itself these days. It’s a grown-up version of that “the world revolves around you” image. As if what I do, or you do, will affect the rotation of the sun.

Stop! That last statement caused some nervous twitching amongst the Christ-followers…and it should! As a follower of Jesus I DO believe that what I do and say does have a ripple effect. My essence and my confidence is rooted in Jesus. I’m referring to the other side of confidence. The side that thinks I…me, myself, and I can do anything. Bottom line, that I am the answer to the problem and the one who can do it better than anyone else.

Case in point! Howard Stern its considering a run for the presidency. I’m sure a big part of his consideration is connected to receiving publicity and self-promotion, but it also follows the thread of thinking that our culture is filled with examples of people who believe they are the answers to situations. They are difference makers, not exasperaters of the problems.

It speaks to character, for lack thereof. Humbleness rarely causes someone to think they are well-qualified. I am acutely aware of situations in my life where humbleness was non-existent and I thought I was the answer for a particular position. When I receive a rejection letter from a publishing company or a literary agent I feel that twinge of indignation. How could they take a pass on an incredible book manuscript?

One thing about being a writer! If you aren’t a humble person, it will cause you to head in that direction!

Sometimes it takes a few head thumps for me to remember that I’m not the answer, but I follow the One who is the Answer. In fact, with no hint of arrogance Jesus said, “I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life.” Instead of being influenced by one of our culture’s influencers, I remind myself daily that He is the Light, the Bread, the Vine, the Living Water, and the Good Shepherd. In essence, He is the real Answer to our needs in the clattering of voices that proclaim their greatness.

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