When I was born
They looked at me and said
What a good boy
What a smart boy
What a strong boy
When you were born
They looked at you and said
What good girl
What a smart girl
What a pretty girl
We’ve got these chains
Hanging ‘round our necks
People wanna strangle us with them
Before we take our first breath
Names, descriptions, categories, We are born with them, gifted or cursed with them, as we move into and through life. Parents, peers, teachers, drill sergeants, friends, and enemies all play Adam with our lives, for better and worse, addressing us with terms of endearment or derision that stick.
This is less of fate and more of fact, fact of life not necessarily the facts about you or anyone.
“Are not all these who speak Galileans? And how is it that we hear, each in our own language in which we were born? We hear them speaking in our own tongues the wonderful works of God.” So they were all amazed and perplexed, saying to one another, “Whatever could this mean?”
If you were from Galilee you were expected to sound like, well, like a country bumpkin.
Others mocking said, “They are full of new wine.”
Yeah, that explains it. Congrats. Your estimation, your categorization explains everything. Get a Galilean drunk and they can speak perfect Egyptian, Arabic, or whatever language is necessary for the occasion. Riiight.
But it is here that we can see the glory of God to cause the sons of Adam to stop and take notice. Though it is difficult to impossible to shake our reputation, hide our skin color, cloak our heritage, conceal our backstory, our personal history is exactly what God uses to confound, instruct, and reach others.
Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were uneducated and untrained men, they marveled. And they realized that they had been with Jesus. And seeing the man who had been healed standing with them, they could say nothing against it.
Note that their observation of the “boldness” of Peter and John combined with the two’s apparent lack of knowledge and ability became secondary to their obvious association with Jesus. The miracle of the lame man standing and walking would have been the same if both Peter and John had had PhD’s and tenure at the local university.
The “profile,” whatever it might be, is used by, is useful to, the Maker of heaven and earth.
This should be of great comfort to us and if necessary, great correction as well. The most important aspect of our identity is that we are disciples of Jesus Christ. He will utilize all the trappings and facets accumulated whether they be singleness, jail time, handicap, poverty, awards, beauty, talent, and all the nicknames of the world, for His glory.
Listen less to how you have been addressed and more to whom the Bible says that you are. You are the Good Samaritan, the preaching Galilean, the chosen people, the apple of His eye, a member of a royal priesthood, and so much more. This is true and the truth regardless of what else may be said or should not be said about you.
Live your life embracing how your Savior sees you. It is the only escape, the obvious redemption, the incredible power, the full utilization of you, for Him.