There are people in the world who act as if the globe, the solar system, in fact the universe leans and depends on them to function properly. From my observation, there seems to be more of these misguided souls among us of late, than we should have to endure. We’ve just been relieved of one of these persons from the highest office in our land. As I look at others in government and other supposedly positions of service, that individual wasn’t the only one who doesn’t understand the pronoun “I” should be used sparingly in thought and action.
In a recent Sunday school lesson, the Apostle Paul was quoted in the book of Romans as follows, “I long to see you so that I may impart to you some spiritual gift to make you strong – that is, that you and I may be mutually encouraged by each other’s faith.” Paul was a very educated person, who probably had the experience and qualifications which would have given him more right to speak in first person; however, did you notice how he was quick to insert humility in the previous quote. He wanted the early Roman church to see him as one of them. Any edification that would come from his visiting them would be of mutual effort, not through the loftiness of his person.
We live in a time when we are constantly bombarded with commercial advertisement in volumes far too much to digest. Have you found yourself replaying some commercial jingle you’ve heard on TV, and couldn’t tell anyone what the commercial is about? You faintly remember it had something to do with some product that would make you a better person in some manner. Maybe it’s just as well that you don’t remember a lot of the details of much of the mundane stuff, we’re exposed to on TV commercials. Think about it TV commercials are often telling us that something’s wrong with the “I”. The “I” has bad breath, bad body odor, messed up hair. The list of malfunctions in the “I’s” life seems enumerable, but if you want to repair them, use this or that product. One thing that’s not highlighted is the built-in obsolescence that’s a part of these products. You must keep on using them to function properly, be presentable, be a better “I”.
It’s hard, next to impossible to not speak in first person. Someone asks you what you do. You know that classic question which cuts right to the heart of what “I” likes to hear. The question sort of prompts you tell what you do rather than who you are. You answer with some ridiculous response letting the questioner know that you have a highfaluting title in that organization in which you’re employed. From that point you and the person you just met are engaged in exchanges (not meaningful conversation) that make it sound as if you both run the organizations in which you work by your lonesome. What if your response had been something like, “I serve as the whatever, and I work with team of people who…”? The glorious “I” is still being used; however, it clearly understands that an island it’s not.
We’re all dependent on others. Without others, none of us would be. I’m a son, a grandson, an uncle, a husband…because of my relationship with others. I can’t do anything, be anything without relationship. Living and living successfully requires the “I” to recognize that and to act accordingly.
I’m old and blessed…hope you will be too.
P.S. I’m old and blessed not of my own actions alone. It took the actions of God and everyone He put in my path to get me to this point. I couldn’t have done it alone. Confession: I’m still working on suppressing the wonderfulness of the “I”. It’s a life-long process.