Sometimes You Need to be Taught

Sometimes you need to be taught a little humility. Several years ago, after my first devotional book was published, I was asked to teach a workshop at a writer’s conference. That made me feel pretty good about myself and about my work. I prepared as best I could and stood smiling from the podium as the students arrived. I studied each one, putting them in little boxes I thought they belonged in. That one is writing fantasy, no doubt. That one isn’t sure why she’s here. That one looks like a retired missionary – she’s likely writing little stories for her grand kids. (Isn’t that sweet!).

The class went well and my head was pretty swollen by the time it was over (In Papua New Guinea they call arrogance having a “bik hed” and that was a good way to describe me at that time).

At the lunch break I ended up sitting beside that ‘retired missionary’ so I asked what she was working on. Her reply stunned me.

“Well, at the moment I’m editing a Greek manuscript by ….” (enter name of famous theologian). “He’s made a number of errors so it’s taking me a while.”

“So, you’re editing this in ancient Greek?”

“Yes, then translating it of course.”

“Oh right, of course!”

I wanted to slide down under the table and sink to my knees to ask forgiveness for my arrogance.

Then I thanked God for that valuable lesson.


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