A little over a year ago I was desperate for a car.  I remember my 1992 Honda Accord  randomly not starting.  I remember running to my mom’s house so I could get her car to take to work.  I remember it was raining and I was late for work because my dumb car was not working.   I remember a family friend taking me out on a Saturday to look for cars.  I had just told my work that I was going to be only working one day a week so that I could live with my sister in Grandview for 2 months as her family adjusted to preemie twins.  I had a budget.  I had $7000 I wanted to spend.  I wanted a four door, automatic car, with low miles that could climb the hills of Seattle when I moved in July.  I kept finding clunkers that the salesmen kept trying to make better than they really were.  I am not a “car girl” but it doesn’t take a genius to spot a lemon.  Well, I moved in with my sister without a car.  Not sure how I was going to get to work when the day came…I knew God would work it out.  I knew He would. 

One night, the fam and I were headed out to eat Chinese food.  We passed Tom Denchel Ford on the way to Prosser.  My brother in law wanted to stop and look.  I was hungry and tired of looking at cars.  I finally gave in and so with 6 kids waiting in the car, we got out, looked around, and found one to take home just for the night.  It was $10,900.  A little more than I wanted to spend.  But it was very clean, automatic, and 4 door with 7800 miles.  I really just took it to make Abe happy and so we could go eat.  But I liked it.  Sure it was a Dodge Stratus but I couldn’t afford the Mercedes or the Subaru or the Mazda or the Toyota.

Abraham and I went back the next night.  I told him my budget and let him do the talking. After 20 minutes of bargaining, I got that car for $7000 out the door.  I was ecstatic.  I couldn’t believe my weeks of looking were over.  I couldn’t believe I got a car with a great history. I couldn’t stop looking at it and smiling.  I was bursting with pride because my God came through just like I knew He would. 

And then I moved out of Grandview.  I moved to Seattle.  I moved to where people have really nice cars.   I moved to the place with Beemers, Mercedes, Maserati.  I didn’t love my car so much.  Suddenly I felt inferior.  I felt foolish for loving this car so much.  I felt like I had to apologize for my car.  MY CAR!  MY CAR that God gave me!  My car that I worked so hard to find.  My provision from my Father and I was apologizing!

What is my point? How often do I apologize for gifts that God gave me? Why do I practically apologize for cooking a great meal because I feel that others are comparing themselves with me? Why do I act “ashamed” (not sure if this is the right word) that I can’t sing, or don’t have more money, or am not the most stylish? 

We all have gifts and non-gifts. The Bible says when we compare ourselves with others, we are unwise.  The Bible also says the fear/respect of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.  So, I suppose you could say, when we compare ourselves with others we are not respecting God.  God could have made me rich.  He could have made me taller, tanner, more athletic, more naturally stylish and creative.  I could have a beautiful voice, violin playing talents,  a green thumb, video game skills, business skills, military skills, government skills, etc.  But I don’t.  I have other skills.  I attract children, homeless people, elderly people, disabled people. I can communicate with those who are outcasts. I can make people laugh.  I can be a great nurse and pack some excellent nasty wounds till they heal.  I can give my life away in building the Kingdom.  I can write a blog.  I can smile.  I can make people feel comfortable to be themselves. 

God made me to be me.  He made you to be you.  We don’t have to point out each other’s non-gifts/inabilities/weaknesses. I don’t have to make fun of you for your queasy stomach and you don’t have to make fun of me for having white legs. If we were all the same, we wouldn’t need each other.  If I could sing, model, or dance, I would not be living in Seattle-I would move to New York or Los Angeles.  My life would be totally different if I had different gifts, talents, abilities.

God has His reasons for making us the way we are.  We don’t have to apologize for His gift and creativity.  And when we do, we disrespect Him.  And that, my friend,  is a very unwise thing to do.

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