Photo by gbcdecatur.org
Recently I received an e-mail that I found very interesting. Here is the content of the e-mail:
We are please to inform you that your candidacy was formally approved April 15th, 2010. Congratulations.
The Publishing Committee selected you as a potential candidate based not only upon your current standing, but focusing as well on criteria from executive and professional directories, associations, and trade journals. Given your background, the Director believes your profile makes a fitting addition to our publication and our online network.
There is no fee nor obligation to be listed. As we are working off of secondary sources, we must receive verification from you that your profile is accurate. After receiving verification, we will validate your online listing within 7 business days.
Once finalized, your listing will share prominent registry space with thousands of fellow accomplished individuals across the globe, each representing accomplishment within their own geographical area.
To verify your profile and accept the candidacy, please visit here. Our registration deadline for this year’s candidates is May 30th, 2010. To ensure you are included, we must receive your verification on or before this date. On behalf of our Committee I salute your achievement and welcome you to our association.
Just to set the record straight, I did not respond to e-mail. Instead, I labeled it as spam mail and blocked the sender’s e-mail address.
But as I was thinking about it, I realized how smart these guys were in appealing to some of the basic desires of a person. We all want to be known and to know that we have significance. When they use phrases like, “you were… chosen,” “who’s who,” “share prominent… space with thousands of fellow accomplished individuals,” and “salute your achievement” for some reason it calls out to our pride and ambition.
I couldn’t help but to think to myself, “What have I really accomplished? Do I really need some organization to validate me or the work that I am doing for God?”
This just helped me to put all things in perspective. In fact, it was a good heart check for me. Once in awhile it is good to ask questions such as:
2) What is the most important thing in my life right now?
3) Why am I doing the things that I am doing?
4) How would I respond if no one ever notices what I do?
It is not easy to develop a heart that does all things for the audience of One, but this is the pursuit. If not, we will be convinced either we are better than we really are or we will forget God’s grace in our lives. No wonder there are many examples and references in the Bible that remind us that pride comes before the fall (Pr 11:2; 16:18; 18:12), but grace is always given to the humble (Pr 3:34; Jas 4:6; 1 Pe 5:5).
As I am getting older and slowing entering into an early mid-life crisis, the appeals to my pride and ambition are greater. This is when I have to keep on reminding myself of what is important. It is simply that my name is written in the Book of Life and that I am known by the One that matters the most. It is hard, but I am thankful that sometimes it takes these kinds of e-mails to remind me of this truth.