Too quiet and much too shy! Be more outgoing and assertive or consider dropping out of the program! Marcy snorted in disbelief as the mantra ran thru mind. She hated hearing the words and considered turning around and stalking strait back into her boss’s office and stuffing the performance appraisal down Miss Perkins scrawny little neck. Perhaps that would be “bold enough” for the big wig so blithely handing out her “constructive criticism”. Marcy knew one thing for certain, She did NOT want to dropout!
Tears smarted behind her eyes as the anger began to wane. Head down, shoulders bent, Marcy quickly hurried thru the office to her desk. Grabbing her purse from the bottom drawer she mumbled to Lindy, her coworker one desk over that she was going to lunch. Marcy did not want to look at Lindy or see the pity that was sure to be in her eyes. She hurried out of the office without looking back.
Thirty minutes later after a brisk walk on the nature trail surrounding the office complex Marcy slumped onto a bench overlooking the scenic duck pond. Something, she wasn't sure what, but something about the little park, the tranquil water, the light breeze rustling thru the trees, dandelion fluff floating in the air - always seemed to calm her. Assure her that God was still there, that he cared about her and knew all her troubles intimately. Perhaps it was the gentle whispering of nature calling forth praises to the creator of all.
Recognizing a nudge within “come unto me” Marcy began flipping thru her bible. Randomly reading various passages as she wondered to herself, “Why do people so ignorantly mistake good manners for shyness or a lack of self confidence?” “Should she just cut off everyone mid sentence, interrupt there conversation and demand to be heard? Maybe dance a jig on the office conference table and say look at me, I have good ideas too!”
She sighed deeply and was soon engrossed in 2 Kings Chapter 5. The story of Naaman: the commander Syria. He was stricken with leprosy when a young servant girl said to her mistress, “If only my master were with the prophet who is in Samaria! For, he would heal him of his leprosy.”
Hmmm, “A servant girl held captive in a foreign land” she thought. How hard it must of have been for her. Yet she cared about her captors and when inspiration struck was not afraid to speak truth to her Mistress. Truth that ultimately led to his miraculous healing from leprosy and to the glory of God! Changed his life and how many others for ever! The girl didn’t quit serving God or sharing her faith just because life dealt her a really hard blow. Slavery in a foreign land! Wow, What a brave girl!
Conviction stirred within Marcy. Well, maybe, just maybe she did hold back. Just a bit! Using “good manners” as crutch, hiding behind them, remaining silent when all the while she itched to be heard.
Didn’t she tend to follow the advice of an old quip once hurled at her on the play ground?
“Better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to open ones mouth and remove all doubt.”
It had hurt terribly when chanted to her every day for a year, Marcy knew it wasn’t true, yet had embraced the sentiment like a suit of armor, even tossed it out her self readily enough. It was a classic move, when the occasional do-gooder got on her case, intending to force her to open up more. It always brought a laugh or too and the subject matter would move on to something else quickly enough.
Now she began to think differently, If God could give a little girl such courage, such caring for others, surely he could help her. She certainly didn’t have a lack of ideas or personality; just not too many people persisted in looking deep enough to see the real Marcy, the one bursting with dreams waiting to be fulfilled…..
Marcy bowed her head, resolved anew, in answer to the Fathers reassuring words so clearly heard deep in her soul. She loved how he always spoke to her personally, in her very own “Marcy” language. “You go girl! We can do it all. Together!”
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