Acts 9:15 (NKJV)
But the Lord said to him, “Go, for he is a chosen vessel of Mine to bear My name before Gentiles, kings, and the children of Israel.”
Have you ever been excited about your boss or teacher announcing the team for the upcoming project only for them to declare that you’re the leader? What about after sitting in a large group and as you try to make a quick exit the person in front of the room calls for you to help pack up some paperwork? Maybe you’re in a hurry at the grocery store and as you try to find what you are looking for a little old lady asks for you to get something she can’t reach?
Any one of these situations can cause you to ask, “Why Me?” Then once you ask that question you have any number of ways you can react. The classic cursing fit in your mind, wanting to do the angry Mr. Hyde answer where you just scream no, or the exasperated exhale before hanging your head in resignation or despair.
Unless you actually have made a conscious life choice to do so or spent time thinking about your situational reactions, taking a deep breath without the audible exhale while analyzing the situation is difficult to do. Life throws all kinds of curves at us in every type of situation, but most of the time there is no real predetermined best way to respond. Mostly we just respond the way we have conditioned ourselves over the years.
I know for myself I have responded poorly in some situations while other times I was surprised I was as calm as I was. Years ago, I would easily join those who practice the profane mental tirade when the unexpected happened or I was put on the spot. Now I try to calmly look past what happened for the brighter side of the situation.
That’s why it doesn’t pay to get upset in situations like these or even look at them in the negative. We should always try to be more positive no matter what happened and try to find the good. By your boss or teacher putting you in charge they are at least acknowledging your potential, be confident whenever you are called on to help and do your best, and always smile if someone feels that you can help them, it’s a compliment.
As I said, I used to be one of those people with a myriad of self-criticism. The boss only chose me to give me extra work or see me fail, the group leader only asked me because I look like a chump, or the old lady is just trying to make me late. All these responses are an internal assessment of how we view ourselves or how we feel about the people around us.
One of the biggest things that I did to change many of my perceptions was repairing my relationship with Christ. Even after I rededicated my life to Him it was not a switch that instantly caused these thoughts to disappear, just that I had more positive answers and energy to draw upon. Soon I was turning the question around to, “Why not me?”
I’m a hard worker and have the experience, so why shouldn’t I get a shot at being the leader? I know what it’s like to have to clean up after an event, so why didn’t I ask the group leader if they needed help? I know what it’s like watching people walk by when I need help, so why couldn’t I notice the woman needed help before she asked? With the Lord by my side I can easily say I should, I could, and I can.
This new type of mindset is only the first step along a more positive and compassionate path. Don’t droop your head and walk quicker when you notice someone collecting for a homeless shelter, don’t avoid the person struggling to lift an awkward box into their truck, or even that person you’ve seen in your neighborhood struggling to carry groceries home.
God knows what each of us are capable of and many times places us in these situations which we run from. No matter our depth of belief we are all reminded of this in Romans 8:28, “And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.” The challenging part sometimes is recognizing that purpose.
My church always have interesting message series and recently we were talking about what it means to be a good neighbor. Not just the normal meaning of those who may live next to us, but those who live in the next room of our home, work in the next office, or even the person sitting next to you on the bus and it does not matter who you are.
We read about The Good Samaritan in Luke 10 and find he was a common man passing by who helped an injured person who was passed by more prominent people. Jesus also told us in Matthew 22:39 that to love our neighbor is equal to loving God, but Matthew 25:40 really sums it up with, “And the King will answer and say to them, Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.’”
So, raise your eyes from the ground and look around to see what opportunities God has place in your path today. It may not be that injured man left lying on the side of the road, but it might be the homeless person you walk by every day without notice, that new co-worker that is sitting alone, or that opportunity to volunteer at your church or in the community.
Once you change the way you look at things you will begin to see all the little things you used to pass by and maybe now repeat the question as “Why not me?” Now also please enjoy, “Share With Those Without.”
SHARE WITH THOSE WITHOUT
Lord I have come across so many people all throughout the years,
Some filled with joy and happiness while others with pain and fears.
There were times that I could provide comfort with a word or deed,
Other times I did not know how to respond to the overwhelming need.
When I see there is so much to do it makes me feel so small,
Sometimes I am too afraid to step forward and get involved at all.
With so many other people standing there looking on,
Why can’t they be the ones who are called upon?
Dear child do you think that they may feel the same way,
Or reaching out a helping hand for them is not okay?
I have called upon you because I know what’s in your heart,
There is something you have to give or need to play a part.
There are many times I place people where they need to be,
And every time you help someone it’s as if you’re helping me.
So use my strength and love to remove your fear and doubt,
Then embrace each chance you have to share with those without.
Simple Faith Christian