Thursday, June 13, 2013

Don't Confuse Insignificance

From time to time I fear that my constant use of the word insignificant will be confused with unimportant, when nothing could be further from the truth. Yes, it is a question of priorities. No, it doesn't mean the lesser priorities are sinful.

Let me explain with a conversation I have multiples times a week. The conversation happens with all of my children, but I'll use my son for this example.

(Pre-conversation scene - I have heard yelling coming from somewhere in the house, between children. Using my Jedi mind powers, I have discerned, from the other room, which child is guilty and handed down a verdict, long before any child comes into my view. I've also called down decided-upon verdict.

This does not stop the victim...er....child, from still coming to complain.)

Son: Daaaaaaaad!
Me: Soooooon! Before you even start, I heard everything, because I have the hearing of a dog, combined with a jungle cat.
Son: Then why does Mommy always have to repeat herself?
Me: You were saying....
Son: I was downstairs praying when my sister came up and....
Me: (cutting him off) I said I heard everything and I have already punished her.
Son: But Dad, I just wanna...
Me: What? Tell me what I already know? I said I heard everything.
Son: But she...
Me: What part of everything don't you seem to understand? I've taken care of it.

(This is somehow the part of the conversation where I end up lecturing the kid who didn't do something wrong - this time. So, trying to end this silliness)

Me: I tell you what. You can tell me what your sister did, if you want to be in trouble too.
Son: But....
Me: Do you want to be in trouble?
Son: No. But I can tell you something different, that's not telling on my sister?
Me: Sure. What do you want to talk about?
Son: There was this one time, when my sister...

It is at this point that he somehow recounts the injustice in less than 4 seconds flat. Unbelievable!?! I suppose this could be a post about injustice and the need of victims to know they've been heard. But what I have experienced are children who feel the need to share their sibling's misdeeds.

I think this is the difference between insignificant and unimportant. I, in trying to save my ears some unnecessary whining, try to preempt the tattling. But without telling their story, my children feel as if somehow their voice is left unheard, their value diminished.

But it's not. And neither is yours. I believe, when we elevate God to where He belongs, our standing also gets elevated. Like the bench players on a championship team, they also get a ring. For us, it's a crown. Don't ever fall for the lie that your search for insignificance means you are unimportant.

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