Hey everyone, Annette here. Happy Monday! We've spent the last few Mondays going through Galatians 6:4-5 in the Message, focusing on being our creative best. I'm so grateful for the opportunity to serve my Creator by using the creative gifts He placed within me. Aren't you? Writing is a gift and a calling. Let's peek at the next section of this fantastic passage and see what nuggets we can pick up to fortify us this week. Our next line reads:
Don’t be impressed with yourself
Wow. Holds nothing back, does it?
Years ago, I joined fellow writers at a conference in Seattle. We sat down to eat and one of the authors said he always signed with this “code”—1cor47. We determined he meant 1 Corinthians 4:7, what we didn’t know was what that verse said. I’ll never forget the impact of these words as he quoted them to the five us:
For who makes you differ from another?
And what do you have that you did not receive?
Now if you did indeed receive it,
why do you boast as if you had not received it?
(1 Corinthians 4:7 NKJV)
Does God inspire our writing? Then, how can we take credit for it? We cannot. That author’s “code” for book signing is a great code for Christian living. It’s humbling and true.
Being “impressed with yourself” leads to boasting. How can God bless the prideful ones? He detests pride. Jesus Himself is our example of humility, serving others and loving them sacrificially. That directive is wrapped up in our calling.
Any successes we have aren’t our own. They are a grace of God. We can’t take credit for them. It’s like the elders in heaven who throw their crowns at the feet of Jesus—they know their accomplishments were only possible by the grace of the One who dwelt inside them, making them succeed. So, how can they retain the crowns bestowed on them? No. They must throw them at His feet, giving credit where it's due.
Ever had to endure a long, one-sided conversation where an author spoke only of his/her accomplishments? Me too. Isn’t it better, more gracious, when an author takes interest in those around him/her? Offering support and encouragement?
Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or conceit,
but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself.
Let each of you look out not only for his own interests,
but also for the interests of others.
(Philippians 2:3-4 NKJV)
We didn't get to where we are today on our own. It was the gracious work of God. He sent mentors into our lives, and teachers. He helped us discern our areas of weakness so we could address them. God gave us the calling, the resources, the support we needed as we sought Him. We certainly couldn't manufacture any of that on our own. And we definitely can't take credit for it.
We can cheer the successes. Enjoy the process and the ride. But we cannot become impressed with ourselves.
Give glory to God and be your creative best.
We're halfway through our series. So, tell me: how do you nurture your creativity? How has God met you in writing, preparing, gathering resources? How has He shown you His faithfulness as you write for Him?