If we go ask our friends one positive trait they see in us, what would they say? This was the question posed in our last summer discipleship getaway. We were to write one good trait about each person in the group. After making a list of adjectives, we couldn’t help but laugh at some of the hilarious descriptions.
Here were some of them: “Always smiling”, “To the highest level”, “Fasionista”, “Share ng Share”, “Laging inaantok” etc. But there were more serious attributes too like Woman of Wisdom, Humble, Loving, A woman after God’s own heart etc.
Seriously, the bottom line of the activity was based on Proverbs 22:1 which says
A good name is more desirable than great riches;
to be esteemed is better than silver or gold.
How do other people see us? How are we perceived by others based on how we speak or behave? What is our reputation?
As I reviewed my list, I was surprised to see the word “lovable”. Was she referring to the right person when she wrote this? 🙂 Honestly, I don’t see myself as lovable. In fact, when I was younger, my cousins teased me for being grouchy (masungit).
As an adult, people’s first impression of me was that I was snobbish (suplada) and ill-tempered. Because I have chinky/almond-shaped eyes, people get intimidated because they think I’m looking daggers at them.
Though I admit to being “mataray” when I was not yet a believer and I still have occasional bouts of grouchiness too. That’s why being described as lovable was so new to me. Reading and hearing my positive attributes made me feel all warm and fuzzy inside. No, it did need make me feel proud of myself nor did it lift me off my seat. I was humbled because I know how wretched and truly sinful I am.
But come to think of it, I’m glad that they see the good traits in me. Why? The “good” they see in me is no longer my doing but the work of the Holy Spirit. Whatever Christ is doing in my life, it is working! Perhaps this is what a change of heart means.
As much as I strive to be pleasant and cheerful, I continue to struggle in submission to His will and obedience to His Word. The Lord continues to prune me, shake me and mold me. The apostle Paul says, “… being confident of this, that He who began a good work in me will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.” Philippians 1:6
I am far from being perfect, not even 100 percent transformed. Never did I claim this or flaunt it for the approval or applause. I am a work in progress. You are too, if at some point in your life have committed to Christ then you know what I am talking about.
The sanctification or transformation is not a one time deal. It happens in the daily musings of our human existence, in our interaction with the world. The process may be unbearable at times but remember God is doing something great in and through us. Press on my dear sister and brother!
At the end of our group discussion, most of us kept our lists. I posted mine on my favorite wall as a reminder that I am still being transformed. The Bible reminds us to aim to love God with all our heart, soul, mind and strength and to love others as well. Easier said than done, right?
God knows that too, that’s why His GRACE abounds! God gives us the grace to overlook an offense, to be patient with others and with ourselves, and to respond in a Christ-like manner to unlovable people and impossible situations. The transformation is all about Christ’s work in our lives. After all it’s all about Him, not us.
If you’re a Mom, a boss or a leader, try this exercise with your kids, your staff and your group. If they were to describe you or give one positive trait about you, what word would that be? You might be surprised at what they have to say.