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Talent, Pride and Passions

Posted by Lorraine Serra on August 28, 2013 at 10:15 AM

I’ll bet you have heard the expression, “It’s hard to be humble when you’re so great”.   It should bring a  giggle or guffaw  to each of us.  It seems so vain, so absurd. 


But, we most likely know someone who is quite full of themselves.  Sometimes, sadly, the blessing of obvious talent can be a curse, or at the very least, a distraction and a preoccupation.


I think of those youngsters who are trained up to be virtuoso musicians; those lovely Asian kids who can outplay anybody on violin or piano.


Or those diminutive gymnasts who practically fly, jump, bounce and float through air over balance beams, uneven parallel bars and the floor.  Isn’t it mind- boggling?

  
Or even young actors who wow us with their inherent talent….think of young Drew Barrymore in E.T.   or Jodi Foster in TV shows and Disney movies. Who could forget young Ron Howard as Opie in Mayberry, RFD.


Do those people stay humble?   How do they do it?  Is their identity and worth all wrapped up in what they do?  What happens when the spotlight is turned to another?   Fame can mess a person up.


Whatever talent we may have been given, as a mathematician, scientist, or chess master, it is critical to remember that talent is a gift from our Creator.   Yes, we are responsible to develop it, but, take credit for it?  No.  Without the grace of God, we are nothing.   Any other approach promotes vanity and pride.


My own God given talents as a vocalist and musician showed up at about age 7, totally by surprise.  And though neither my parents nor I had any great plans, God did…not for fame and fortune….but for blessing and ministry through performance and teaching.


But, I grabbed hold of the notoriety and approval that my talents commanded in my church community all through my youth.   See, I actually grew up in front of our congregation, singing and playing at age 12.


 Many artists point to their formative years singing and playing music in church, especially African American artists.


Well, this here white girl had the opportunity, through the church, to be trained to play guitar, lead worship, record an album with our worship group at age 15, work under the guidance of an NBC orchestra leader, sing in a choir, conduct a choir, and provide music for countless weddings and funerals. 


The church was my university!  But, often I got paid!


It was all a gift from God, but I didn’t think much about that.  I just thought I was pretty great; the admiration of my church community put me in a spotlight where I thought I could do no wrong. 



I didn’t go around boasting, or acting like I was too awesome to hang out with the likes of you, or anything like that.  No, I did embrace a Christ-like attitude of service, kindness, love, encouragement, patience with the people around me for the most part. 


But, I was seriously heeding the comments of those around me saying, “You should go out and make it big.”   Mmmm.  Sounded like a great way to make a living. But, let there be no mistake, I became driven to make a career of this music business thing.  And my obsession with it even became a wedge between me and my husband of only 2 years.   


In Colossians chapter 3, Paul instructs us in verse 17,   “And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.”


Was that my attitude?  Was that my motivation?  Was that my posture?  


Nope.   But, God knew how He would change my attitude and purify my heart.  The journey ahead was going to be used to mold me, craft me, and restore me to what I didn’t even know was lost…..

I encourage you to read Colossians 3 today.  I pray it rings true in your heart and gives you the certain hope that God’s direction is your best bet.

Lord, I thank You for your sovereign hand over our lives.  Thank you for caring enough to draw us out of the snares of our own pride and vanity into a loving relationship full of blessing and treasures of the Spirit.  


With Your help, I continue to trust You as you lead me in the path of life.  Amen.

Categories: Real Answers For Life

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1 Comment

Reply Iris
8:43 AM on September 4, 2013 
This is an awesome testimony and very humbling. Thanks for sharing!