One of the perks of the blissful innocence (ignorance) of our youth, is the blank canvas that lays before us. Today, most of us have an idea of what the end result of our lives should look like. We all are allowed to fantasize about our perfect career, perfect marriage, and beautiful children. This blissful naivete means we can picture the perfect house with a fence and 3 cars in the driveway (because, who doesn’t need 3 cars).
My family was one of the few that made it out of the projects of Orange, NJ. Those memories stayed with me however; you know, your typical project images (think crack in the 80’s). I don’t remember how I felt looking at the victims of those circumstances, except I knew I never wanted to be them. I would tell myself and others that I would NEVER do drugs and I would NEVER drink. I would follow all the morals my mother ingrained in me. I knew this was the key to the perfect life that my dear heart had imagined.
Unfortunately, I haven’t stayed on the straight and narrow. I haven’t always followed my mother’s moral advice. I’ve never had a drug or alcohol problem (Praise God) but some of the bad choices I made, impeded my flow to the perfect family with the perfect house and fence. The consequences of these experiences have been my Humble Pie.
Life has found a way to kick me off my high horse and realize that I am not any different from the victims I pitied (I do still pity them now). The saying “but for the grace of God go I” was lost on me in my teens. I fully grasp the brevity now.
This perception is what I call Humble Pie. We all need Humble Pie to reach the souls that God has assigned to us. Sometimes Humble Pie doesn’t come from a bad decision. God uses tough times to teach us all a lesson. Humble Pie is often a meal of those “paying their dues.” I don’t believe you can be effective in ministry if you can not be empathetic to people’s different stages in life. Humble Pie will allow us to put ourselves in others shoes. We may not have had the same issue, but with Humble Pie, we can understand how one wrong decision can land us in an entanglement. We can better appreciate the struggle of the young entrepreneur and the starving artist. Humble Pie will show us the harshness of life without God, so we will understand the urgency of getting others to life with God.
Humble Pie leads to testimony, and testimony is needed to overcome.