Confessions of an "A" Student

by - April 28, 2011

3.74.  That was my grade point average when I graduated from college.  I'm not bragging -- I'm confessing.

If I had my druthers, I'd be a professional student; I love to learn.  It's the very thing I learned on that first day of school when I handed Ms. Human a perfectly five-year-old self portrait, and earned my first A.  It wasn't long before I had it down pat:  listen carefully to the expectations, go home and follow those directions, return to class and give it all you've got, then wait for the A with confidence. 

Since my school days, I've graduated to list-making:  clear expectations, measurable accomplishments, and quick, concise feedback:  list all crossed off by bedtime.  3.74.  That's 93.9%.  It's a that means I did pretty good  well.  (Bonus points for good grammar!)

The problem is, after graduation, life doesn't come with a syllabus.  There are no professor, no report cards, no red numbers and letters at the top of my work deeming me excellent.  The only red letters I have now measuring my deeds are the ones Jesus spoke.  His commands, His encouragement, His wisdom and Holy Spirit empowerment for my tasks.  His mercy and grace. 

These things aren't accolades earned for a job well done.  They're gifts received with humble gratitude.  I'm much better at the former, and still learning the art of the latter.  Overachieving is easy.  I guess that's why I keep running into my need for validation, and discovering my propensity for pridefully trying to earn it.

It's nothing more than the cowards way out.  It takes courage to merely accept validity, while unworthy, with humble heart and hands.  We don't really want to be unworthy, do we.  We don't want to have to turn to a bloody sacrifice on a cross, dressed up though we may be in our Easter finery.  It's so desperate and despicable.  Even the Father looked away.

7.34 is a lie.  There is no such thing as 93.9%.   Jesus paid it all, and I owe nothing.  My deeds?  They'll be tried by fire and either burn or remain, one or the other. 

He indeed validates, but only when He increases and I decrease until He is everything and I am nothing.  I know this in my head, could ace the test in a classroom.  But in real life, I think I may still be failing.

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  1. Good post Dawn! So much of what the Lord is growing me in is to be real, genuine and truly transformed by His grace. The grade I currently have is pretty bad, but I want Him to be pleased and I am trusting in the One who has promised to complete His work in me. "Now may the God of peace—who brought up from the dead our Lord Jesus, the great Shepherd of the sheep, and ratified an eternal covenant with his blood—may he equip you with all you need for doing his will. May he produce in you through the power of Jesus Christ,every good thing that is pleasing to him. All glory to him forever and ever! Amen." (Hebrews 13:20-21)

  2. I would give that post an "A" and so would Jesus (I think!). He must increase but I must decrease. Your words are a blessing to me! I needed to hear them today.


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