"Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity."
1 Timothy 4:12
This verse had a great deal of meaning for me when I was in jr. high and high school. It made me believe that I had something to offer even though I was young. What I didn't realize was that it would come back to have meaning to me later in life. At the age of 32, I still have issues with people who think that I am "so young." There is something that goes along with that phrase, in my mind, that says "You have no idea what you are talking about - you don't have the life experience that I do." Whether someone is saying it that way or not, that is what my brain hears. (Great for the self esteem!)
This brings up SO much for me. Why is there this sense of competition with EVERYTHING in society? "My house is nicer than yours." "My car has more miles on it than yours." "I ran longer than you." "I have less body fat than you." "I eat organic and you don't." "My birth story was worse than yours." "Your dishwasher went out? Well, my dishwasher, air conditioner, and fridge went out." I could literally go on and on and on. I think it starts when kids are young - I can see it with my 5 year old. We see it on Yahoo headlines - or in magazines that ask, "Who wore it better?" What I want to yell is WHO CARES?!?! Is that what we've boiled everything down to, that there is 1 winner?
I saw a preview of the new sitcom with Matthew Perry. There is basically a competition within a counseling group about who's issue is worse and there is 1 person who wins. That's how it is with the world we live in. We are looking to one up people with who's issues are worse. I am sure that I've come across that way and most times I don't mean it in a competitive way but on the other hand I will confess that if you've tried to one up me over and over again, I've done it back. Again though, I say, Who Cares?!?! Aren't we all entitled to say something without feeling like we've just lost a race? Don't we all have something to offer? I have had lots of life experience and I know that because I am not a true extrovert, people discount me. It is incredibly frustrating. So, I will surrender this feeling and look to 1 Timothy 4:12 for some encouragement. I know that God has something great for me! I am confident that He's got me covered and my story is just as important as the next person's. And I'm incredibly thankful to Jesus that there isn't just 1 winner!!