by: Eric Muhr
I used to help cover politics for a newspaper in Idaho. I interviewed a local man, a profile. He sought a legislative seat, defined himself as anti-tax, pro-jobs. He spoke of education and construction and the elderly. And while I jotted notes, I thought how similar this sounds to all the rest I’ve met. Each one defines his character according to accomplishments. Each list — the same — with clubs and causes, offices, endorsements. The only differentiation comes from what’s been done and what’s opposed. We have fences but no foundation.
And what about me? I too am guilty of self-image by comparison. Instead of seeking Christ’s character, I create a rubric for success, assess myself by personal performance and how much better or worse it is than that turned in by others.
This is not the way of truth.
“I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.”
A metaphor. Spiritual growth, the discovery of personal purpose, can never come from comparison, one branch to another. I have tried to define my being by what I do. And all this time, I had it backwards.