Reflections of a Broken Man

On Seeking Approval by StephenMac
August 18, 2009, 6:31 pm
Filed under: Reflections | Tags: , , , ,

**Currently listening to Don’t Wait – Dusk and Summer, Dashboard Confessional… on an incidental note, this morning’s chapel song had a very DBC feel to it…**

At college, I am surrounded by super-intelligent people… Most times, I don’t notice it, but last night at dinner, I really did. I was having a conversation with a very distinguished scholar, and I couldn’t help but feel completely humbled by the simple fact that I got very lost in the conversation… I genuinely had no idea what was going on. I returned to my room, procrastinated by opening up the blogs that I subscribe to, and finding a discussion on “who did Christ die for?” – a simple question – but had nothing more than a superficial appreciation for the answers provided in the debate. This past day, I have felt out of my league for the first time in a very long time…

But that’s not my worry… so I’m mediocre… this I’ve understood for a while… Some men are born to mediocracy, others have mediocracy thrust upon them, and I’m both… But what really stunned me was my reaction this morning in class… This scholar visited our class, and I found myself trying to answer every question, trying to prove the fact that I had listened, that I had understood. I found myself seeking the approval of the lecturer…

There’s a certain shame that comes with realising that you’re a try-hard… And there’s something hypocritical about preaching against this a mere two days before. Physician, heal thyself.

How can I preach “You’re a failure, but Christ is your success, and you’re in him” when I can’t even appreciate that myself?!? To preach Christ-esteem is one thing, to still have low-self-esteem is another…

To seek the approval of men is nothing short of shameful and futile, and to ignore the self that Christ gives me is foolishness and leads to despair, disappointment, and pointlessness.



3 Comments so far
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Thanks for sharing – all to often i feel that i’m the only one that “isn’t quite as with it” as some/all of the others in the room with me!

Comment by Nathan Lowery

bro, that is a humbling and genuinely helpful post. thanks for being so honest.

even tonight (over a genuine blessing) i realised that i smuggled in my achievement to something that was pure gift from God. and realising that everything. every single little thing that I have and am. that it’s all pure gift. this rebuked me of trying to find approval on idols too.

flippin’ sin. i hate it.

but am so glad that God hates it too. and has even crucified christ to demonstrate his pure gift of approval for me.

thanks for being honest bro. i’m encouraged by you.

your brother,

ps – personally, i don’t think you’re mediocre. i read your posts on just-war and game theory and realise that God’s gifted you in awesome ways. pure gift bro. pure gift.

Comment by Mark Earngey

thanks guys – appreciated.

Comment by StephenMac

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