Tuesday, February 25, 2014

More is less. Less is more.

I sit gazing across the room. Her fingers catch my eye. Something glistening... several somethings! "One, two, three, four rings on those fingers!" I glance away and then back again. "Another one on her thumb! Wow, five!"

"Why would someone want that much stuff on her fingers? How can she even get anything done? Does she think that makes her look pretty? Is this a statement of wealth? Does somebody she admires wear rings on every other finger and so she wants to look like the admired one?" 

I ask myself these questions but conclude, "It probably is a combination of forces on her, but at the core, it most likely has to do with her perception of her worth. No doubt, she doesn't even think about what's motivating her. Somehow, when she puts all that stuff on, it makes her feel good and so she wears it."  

How fragile we are. 

I'm driving home. At an intersection, a loud pickup truck pulls up beside me. It's jacked up high and the driver looks down at me with a look of "Ain't I somethin'?" The image of a four-hundred pound woman in a turtleneck sweater, mini-skirt, and big clompy heels comes to mind and I laugh at the thought. The truck looks ridiculous. It isn't even a big truck, but, buddy, the owner is sure trying to make it look like he's a powerhouse!  (Which, I think to myself, "And how does this machine impart power to you, Sir? You remain exactly whoever you are at the core of your being whether you are behind the wheel of this hunk of metal or fiberglass or whatever it is or not. This object does not impart worth to you.) Oh well,...

How fragile we are.

I think about the driver who parades his "worth" around town and about the woman who wears her "worth" on her fingers and about the millions of other humans in the world who try to increase their value in the eyes of others in similar ways. I reflect on my feelings of fragility and my need for growth over the years in this area.

How fragile we are.

I always end up back to my answer source, and He makes me smile.

Come unto Me and rest ... Don't seek your worth in things or relationships with other humans. Don't compare yourself with others. Realize that I made you and I love you so much that I took on the form of man to live with you and demonstrate my love for you and show you how I want you to live. If you live the way I showed you, you will find true fulfillment and lasting worth. Trust Me. I know what I'm talking about.

I'm in a pursuit of understanding myself to ever-better align my life with the life Jesus Christ exemplified and one critical area is this source-of-worth issue. I doubt we ever escape the temptation to try to establish worth in things like rings and trucks and myriad other items, but we can make choices that force our flesh to take a hike. We do not have to let it control us.

We gain strength of character as we make choices that help us live out the reality of finding our worth in the right place. Thanks be to God for the rest and freedom that comes with repeated choices which develop into habits and then character, character like unto Christ where our worth comes from pleasing our Heavenly Father, and that's all we need.