Every Monday and Wednesday night I sit in a college classroom feeling like the oldest student that ever lived. It takes every ounce of my concentration to keep up with what the teachers are saying, especially in Accounting.
I have never been all that great with numbers. I honestly thought Accounting would be a breeze since I have actually had a tiny bit of experience in it.
But, see, my experience was real life. "Put this number here and that number there." I never learned the theory behind it. And, if I am being honest, I still don't really know the theory behind it. I only know that everything I THOUGHT I knew about Accounting is just the opposite of what Accounting really is.
I come in from work to my class and I sit there trying to will it all to make sense to me. What makes it even more challenging is that there are a lot of talkers in the room.
I have to try to sift through what he is saying over what everyone else wants to contribute. I'm telling you, my nerves are shot by the end of class. Before I realized it the other day I had said, "Please just shut up" out loud! Thankfully the other person was talking non stop and didn't even hear me.
I am a relatively intelligent person. I mean, I am not Genius level, but I am not stupid, either. I have an IQ of about 122 which is somewhat below my brother and sister, but still not too shabby. I guess they got all the brain power and I got, well, something in return. Not sure what.
And I can be ditzy at times. I recognize this trait in myself and I am OK with it. It makes life interesting.
I made a 77 on my first Accounting exam and I was quite disappointed. My son says that "all the old ladies make A's" so I was really pushing myself to do well.
There comes a time in your life when you realize the only *person* you need to impress is yourself, and that is what I have been trying to do.
I am doing very well in my other 2 classes so I have been trying to bring my grade up in Accounting.
We had a "take home" test that we turned in last week. I thought I did OK, but I was not positive. Needless to say I was very excited when I received my grade and it was a 91!!
WOOHOO!! Go ME!!
Then......we reviewed the test......
One of the journalizing problems that he had given me complete credit for, when we reviewed it, I had completely wrong....
I looked in the book and I saw where I messed up, but that didn't matter. The point was it was wrong and he counted me right.
My stomach started turning.
I want to bring you to an understanding before I go any further. I am flesh.
Yes, I have been baptized in Jesus' Name.
Yes, I have received the Holy Ghost.
Yes, I do my very best to live this with everything that I am, to be REAL.
But, I am going to tell you that I found myself in a struggle.
I mean, come on, it wasn't MY fault he graded it wrong! I should get to keep that 5 points since it was his mistake, right?
I wanted to. I had an A. I wanted to keep my A.
Then that voice inside me, that very same Holy Ghost that I just mentioned said, "What if THIS is a test? What if he knows that he gave you credit you didn't deserve and he is waiting to see what you are going to do about it?"
And my stomach turned.
I REALLY wanted to keep my A.
Class was finally over, and all of the big talkers had left us in silence.
I approached my teacher.
"Hey, you graded number 61 as correct, but I had it all wrong."
He said he got kind of sloppy grading at the end and was not really listening to me.
My stomach turned.
"No, really. Look at number 61. I know what I did wrong. I looked in the book and I see the mistake I made, but I got this one wrong and you graded it right."
He turned to number 61.
And he took 5 points off my test.
My stomach turned.
Then he said, "It takes a lot to be honest."
In this case, it took my A.
But, my stomach quit turning. Most of the time doing the right thing means you are not doing the easy thing.
I thanked him and left.
"But he giveth more grace. Wherefore he saith, God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace unto the humble . . . Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up."James 4:6, 10
It is hard to balance this blog for me because while I am trying to explain how hard it was for me to be humble it sounds like I am puffing myself up.
But, I'm not.
I REALLY wanted that A.
But instead of an A when I left the class that night I had earned something that means even more to me. I earned his respect.
And I also lifted some of the burden to excel off of my shoulders, because when I remember what is truly important, WHO is truly important I don't have to worry about elevating myself.
My God does the elevating.
So I got a B. That's still pretty good. And since I understand what we are covering now I have another chance to do well on the next exam.
I have something to prove, you see. I need to prove to myself that I can do it, and I need to prove to the Lord that I am worthy of the trust He has placed in me.
Since He "gives grace to the humble" I will always make it as long as I remember to keep an humble spirit, because my Bible says "His grace is sufficient!"
In other words, HE is all I need.