April 4, 2012

Joy In Insignificance

This Guest Post is from Malia Shipe. Malia is not only a member of The Brook and a licensed family counselor, she is also a friend. I hope you're encouraged by her insight.

Acts 4:13 When they saw the courage of Peter and John and realized that they were unschooled, ordinary men, they were astonished and they took note that these men had been with Jesus.

Today, when I think of  Peter or John, I think of these great men of God:  Peter, 'upon this rock I will build my church' and John, the beloved. It is easy to forget that in their time, they were not the big names of the Gospel. Peter and John were two dudes that spent much of their day just trying to survive. They had to gather food, find water, walk from place to place. They talked with other men about politics, religion, and the Law. The people around them for the most part probably found them interesting, possibly annoying, maybe even exesperating in their persistence that Jesus was the Christ. There was nothing special about them.

These men were not unique, with no special talents or gifts and because they were insignificant on their own, the SIGNIFICANCE of their time with Christ was transparent. What would have been different had they spent energy and effort trying to show off their own special talents. What if Peter who was such a social clutz had tried to use big words or if John had boned up on some debating skills.  Imagine if they had been "schooled" or known as super smart, how would that have changed or impeded the ability of the others to see Christ. It was in Peter's rough exterior that Jesus was able to show His beauty. It was because of John's humility that Christ's glory was viewed with clarity. 

Peter and John were completely unaware of their legacy. They did not consider themselves significant. They went about their daily work free from the burden of trying to be remembered. They moved between interactions unshackled by the chains of pride, ego, or achievement. 

It is the same today. I do not have to work at being special or useful, I only have to be available. My efforts to make myself special only clutter His ability to use me.

There is joy in insignificance. There is freedom in being nothing special.  I can be one of the ordinary. And maybe, someone will take note that I have been with Jesus.