I have a friend who is a high school English teacher and a mom, so she’s got the hookup if you’re looking for a sitter or a teen-for-hire. She recommended one of her students to a local business in town, and the student was hired. As the student prepared to start the new job, my friend cautioned her to do a good job. “Since I recommended you, my name’s on the line here.”
I’m even like that a little with my children. When they leave their manners tucked in their sock drawers, to some degree that reflects on me as a parent, or at least I feel like it does.
And I’ve been a little freaked out about this whole concept the past few days. As I put my words out here on a somewhat regular basis and as I write for She, I am more public than I have ever been. And as I write about my life, my experiences with God, and those of other people, I am going pretty public as a Christ follower. Now I am honored and humbled to hang that sign around my neck and to wear that T-shirt, but it also means carrying around a cinder block in my belly a lot of the times too. I get so anxious I almost throw up when I stare into the screen and think, “His name’s on the line here.” Or when I have daymares about the repercussions of gettin’ testy with a store clerk, pretending not to see an acquaintance I don’t want to chat with, or indulging in gossip with other moms.
Now I know that He is totally sovereign. That I am not able to mess up His plan. That there is grace because I am not perfect. BUT I also know that I can hinder the cause of Christ by wearing the T-shirt while acting in a way that is inconsistent with His character.
So it is my prayer that I do not dishonor His name in my efforts to share His work in my life. And I am seeking the precarious balance of doing right by all people (according to His commands) without believing that I have to please everyone. I’m a firstborn; it’s my natural inclination to want to please people. But God clearly lays out that His ways are not the ways of man, so I can’t play both sides of the field and hope all that works out okay in the end.
Got the T-shirt. Wearin’ it with pride. Prayin’ I don’t stain it in the process…
Endnote: My nickname as a child was Messmaker, and I’ve already shared my tendency to collect food stains. You get my drift?