Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Outstanding (04/21/11)
TITLE: Chosen For Mediocrity
By Karen McCabe
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She had average intelligence and, well, below average looks. She had a good alto voice and could read music but would do the world a justice if she never sang a solo. She always seemed to be just below adequate in everything she tried to do.
She wrote a poem in the sixth grade for an English assignment. It was a good story-poem several pages long. She thought, “Finally maybe I will get an ‘A’ in something.” When the graded paper was returned to her, it had a"C-" circled in big red letters on it. She asked the teacher after class, “Why did I get such a poor grade? I thought it was a pretty good poem.” His reply shocked her. He said, “You didn’t write it. You copied it.” “No, I didn’t. I wrote it by myself.” He didn’t believe her and said she deserved the "C-". She threw the poem in the trash.
She belonged to a typical, middle-classed, 1950-60’s “Leave It To Beaver” family complete with an older Wally-type big sister, near-perfect parents and, of course, she had the Beaver’s ornery streak. But when she married and moved away from home, she moved away from that way of life, also.
As much as she wanted to be like her mother, she wasn’t. She didn’t quite measure up. The introduction of children in her life made her want to be the best wife and mom possible but…
After many mistakes and much stupidity, she finally decided her only hope was in God. She had been saved when she was eight but had not made Jesus Lord of her life. She decided she had messed things up enough and needed help – the kind that can only come from God Himself.
In church, she taught, presided, sang, cooked, cleaned and counseled much. She filled momentary needs. She was more than a pew-sitter but never, ever destined for greatness. And she knew it. She tried very hard to be good at something but just wasn’t. And it became okay…okay to be slightly less than adequate. Inconsequential. Mediocre.
She reasoned that God was protecting her – that if she were really good at something she would be unbearably proud and haughty about it. So He kept her humble and weak and very aware of her shortcomings.
What day was it? Looking back over her shoulder years later, she couldn’t pinpoint the day. Somehow it just happened. She heard some preaching, some teaching, or perhaps words straight from the heart of God.
…God has chosen the weak things of the world to put to shame the things which are mighty; ( I Cor. 1:27, NKJV) and, You did not choose Me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit, and that your fruit should remain… (John 15:16,NKJV)
Those are the particular words that spoke to her; they went off in her spirit like an exhilarating fireworks display. Chosen by God Himself. Me. Mediocre, inconsequential me. Chosen. By God.
She let the words sink in day after day, week after week, until they were alive inside her. Living Water. Bread of Life. Food for her spirit – her spirit bearing fruit – love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. (Gal. 5:22-23 NKJV) Fruit that would remain, as promised.
And she fell in love – in love with the One who loved her for the person she was - the One who chose her because she was weak and mediocre and inconsequential. How awesome was that?
Did her life change? Not really. Did she begin to accomplish great things? No. Then what did change?
She now had a calling. Her calling. Something she could do well. She could receive God’s love (the pleasure God has in loving her as His creation.)
But the best part followed.
At the end of her life, when she was called home, she stood before her God - partly trembling, partly ecstatic – knowing she was completely loved but also remembering her inadequacies.
Love looked at her. Not at her works. Not at her past. They looked into each other’s eyes and saw what she had felt for years…relationship.
And He spoke.
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