A few months ago I got sort of a promotion at work, moving from the front desk (much rejoicing) upstairs into the Human Resources Department to become the HR Assistant. I think my official title is something like Employee Services Admin and Staffing Admin but really all that means is that I’m the Human Resources gofer girl…which in all honesty I think is a much better title for me. One of my main functions is dealing with Disa, an online service that helps me coordinate drug, alcohol, and background screens for our employees. When the job was given to me it was very much like a game of pass the hot potato. Nobody wants to deal with it because the service can often be way more trouble than it’s worth, but we have to use it as some of the big companies we work for require it. I’m fairly certain my supervisors threw a party after getting it off their hands.
Now, generally speaking when I have a problem with their service it’s their fault. I will put names in the system and when I go back to look at them, somehow they’ve been changed; half the time the records I know I put in correctly are completely messed up; I’ll get twenty e-mails and a phone call a day about the same problem (Office Space moment anyone?). Needless to say, they can be a huge headache, and the running joke around the office is that if there’s a problem, you blame Disa. Recently, however, I got a big fat serving of humble pie (read: the whole pie, tin and all). I’d gotten yet another e-mail from them about a missing form and I was completely and totally convinced that it was their fault. But amidst my fuming and shaking my fist at them I realized that in this particular instance, it wasn’t their fault. In fact, it was mine.
There’s not a whole lot more humbling then realizing the very error you are railing against in another person was actually your error. This happens a lot more to me than I would like to admit. People cut me off in traffic, I complain, then I do the same thing. I’m left out of a conversation, get irritated, then in hindsight discover I’ve done the same to someone else. Someone is impatient with me, I grumble about it, then I lose patience with someone else. It’s kind of like being in the middle of one big humble pie fight where I somehow imagine I’m not covered in lemon meringue and rhubarb, then look in the mirror and realize I’m the messiest one in the room. It hurts most of the time, but it’s a very good thing.
The beauty of the Christian life is not becoming puffed up with our own self-righteousness; rather it’s realizing how weak and sinful we are. God allows us to be humbled that we might look at others with grace. How can we puff up in anger and refuse forgiveness for a sin committed against us when we realize we’ve done the same to another? Most of the time it’s because of the log (or plank depending on the translation) obstructing our view. Humbling moments begin to obliterate the obstruction, enabling us to see much more clearly. So I’m thankful for them, as much as they hurt, and pray that I will remember the lessons learned when in the midst of a moment of self-righteous anger. By God’s grace I will grow to understand my own weakness more and more, and be better able to praise Him for His great mercy on my life.
“Do not judge so that you will not be judged. 2 For in the way you judge, you will be judged; and [a] by your standard of measure, it will be measured to you. 3 Why do you look at the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye? 4 Or how [b]can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ and behold, the log is in your own eye? 5 You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye.