I recently tried out Scrabble for a few rounds. Humbling for me since I played my wife Wendy and she beat me... blindfolded. Normally, I would avoid games that take intellectual left brain skill (ie: I hate Trivia Pursuit), cause I opt for games where I can act and just make a fool of my right brained self. That kind of competition I can do! But I wanted to play Scrabble out of shear desire to try and feel smart---- it didn't work. There's quite a distinction between "feeling" smart and "being" smart. (That was pretty profound, huh? Maybe I AM smart).
On the serious side, I've realized that when it comes to my mind--I'm definitely not a "scholar."(among other things). I''ll never be the tweed-coat clad theologian pastor puffing a pipe and sitting next to the fireplace deliberating on the profundities (now there's a good scrabble word) of Biblical interpretation. I'm not much for heady conversations. Don't get me wrong-I like details, information, and "knowing" all I can about the Good News but I lean more toward the touchy feely side of the Gospel. God's story is a fact--that we choose to believe but I also believe we must choose to feel the Good News, too. I might not be able to debate systematic theology and get an A (after all read this:) cause what, (or who), I really know is Jesus, the love of God, and his Spirit-empowered, world-changing story of hope. You'd think that would be enough, but honestly... I sometimes have to fight to believe this---the truth that this--God's love and his transforming power in my life--is enough. You see, a lot my brokenness (on-going and from the past) enslaves me to comparisons.
I have no plaques, degrees, or scholarly achievements from any prestigious places hanging on my office wall. I probably never will even if I do finally attain my Masters one day. In fact, not only do I lack lots of intellectual credentials, I'm void in a lot of areas: For instance:
I had to ask someone one time what the acronym MLB stood for, which goes to show that I'm not in the know at all when it comes to sports. Admittedly, I often feel small when conversations come up and I can't contribute stats, college football projections, or any pertinent info on baseball, basketball..not even ping-pong is on my radar. Your Grandma could beat me.
I pretty much know nothing about mortgages, escrow, stocks and/or bonds. Although I wish I had the ability to play the market and own a house, I'm just happy that God provides just enough for our little family..check to check.
If I pick up a hammer or screwdriver--beware!! Run for the hills and protect your children. I suck dirt at fixing things and couldn't build a block, let alone a house. My wife's had to accept that the bar for my handyman skills is low and she's just happy when I'm able to change a light bulb, or fold up our double stroller (-think sumo wrestling). When I attempt to fix stuff my thumbs end up paying for it. Besides have you seen my thumbs?
Sorry to all my gamer friends but as for video games you won't want to pick me for your team. I can't join in on that past time, I'd rather go to the dentist than play video games.
This list could go on. Things in this world that I just don't know, won't ever know, and realistically don't ever want to learn.
This is when I realized I'm a simpleton and I'm OK with it.
This post is not about self loathing. It's actually about self acceptance. God really spoke love to me this as I was coming to terms with my limitations...which are actually not limitations but specific freedoms which increase my ability to be who God created me to be. I'm growing more and more in my understanding of God's full love and complete acceptance of me and who I am. That I'm a man, made in his image, capable of leading and living passionately for him and also leading my wife and kids by his power and love. And when I stand before him one day he will not be judging me on how on my knowledge of sports history stats or the makes and models of cars.
What matters is knowing HIM, loving him and loving others! Whew!
So with what I know..I will fight. With what I am passionate about. I will live a life of worship and I will (try) not to compare myself to others. I will resolve to know Jesus! I will choose to love God and seek to serve others with His love and power. That's what makes us truly wise.
If you feel like me, Please read:
1 Corinthians 2
We need to be eloquently well spoken, intellectually knowledeble or put together to be used by God. We just need to know God, be ourselves, and let Him work through us. God can even use a simpleton.