I’ll be quite honest with you — I’m not the most humble person on the planet. I’m definitely not as big of a deal as Mr. Burgundy in the clip embedded here, but as often goes with the youngest sibling, I’ve tended to seek attention from the people around me by “performing”. Over the years that has taken many forms.
Let me unpack that word a little. What I mean by this word is that in order to feel valuable and loved, some people need to “perform,” or seek attention of others that will validate their existence. It’s not in the sense of playing a show in front of a large group of people. Many performers do not care about the attention, they just do what they love to do, and the fame part is irrelevant to say the least.
Growing up in the Church, I’ve found the institution itself lacking in many ways. However, my community is there and it’s where I learned much of what I live out of today. The truth contained in Bible stories and the wisdom preached in biblical principles will be with me my entire life. For that I’m grateful.
However, it is also where I saw people gain great acceptance and applause by being the center of attention. Whether singing, or playing instruments, preaching, or performing a skit, church was the beginning of many peoples’ “performing”. Again, this isn’t necessarily a bad thing.
What happens when someone of my disposition sees others be applauded by being in front of a crowd is very simple. I tend to want similar recognition. Is it right? no. Does it mean I’m flawed? Well, I don’t think that’s an area of debate. Is it something to be aware of? Absolutely.
The frustration comes when I realize that love and value do not come solely from other people. True value comes from God, and pleasing Him is my ultimate goal. But it’s so easy to look at the here and now and think that it’s by far the most important thing in my life. Other people’s approval will sway and I am the first to admit that I love the spotlight, but it’s fickle. Attention, admiration, and high esteem from other is not only superficial, it’s deceiving.
That’s why my focus has, and will continue to shift to serving. As soon as I find myself seeking attention, value and “love” from the things I do for people or how I perform, I am moving into a place of servanthood. Taking myself low, in order to lift up others around me and to honor my Father in Heaven is the only way I can survive in truth. The rest of the details are just that.
I don’t really like to think that I misplace my value center, but as I look deeply inside myself, attempting to sift out the negatives in order to be of most benefit to myself and to God, I have to admit that it’s truth.
After all, not all of us can be as big a deal as Mr. Burgundy.