When I was writing my book, Forty Days: A Memoir of Our Time in the Desert of Childhood Cancer, there were times when I went back through my old journals to make sure I was remembering everything correctly.
As I did, a phrase caught my eye, “The bad thing about putting my private religious thoughts on CaringBridge is that I don’t want people to think I am all high and mighty.”
It was as if I had travelled through time. I could remember writing those words and feeling that way.
At the time, God was working some intense changes in my heart. I wanted to write about it on CaringBridge (the site where I updated friends and family on Cooper), but I was scared of what people would think.
It was clear to me that I had no right or authority to write about God. I wasn’t good enough. I wasn’t holy enough to be qualified to write about God. And in the end, with all my shortcomings staring me in the face, I would just decide to keep my mouth shut.
However, one blog and two books later, apparently somewhere along the line I changed my mind. Or maybe I just couldn’t hold it in any longer?
But the truth is, I’m still not qualified to write about God. That hasn’t changed.
Even with all the degrees in the world, I still wouldn’t be qualified. None of us are, really. Not on our own merit.
None of us have all the answers or understand all the theology, but thinking we need to is such an earthly perspective.
If you look at things from a heavenly standpoint, we all are qualified to talk about and write about God, because our qualification doesn’t really have anything to do with us. It comes from God.
The Apostle Paul puts it this way:
“Not that of ourselves we are qualified to take credit for anything as coming from us; rather, our qualification comes from God, who has indeed qualified us as ministers of a new covenant, not of letter but of spirit; for the letter brings death, but the Spirit gives life.” (2 Corinthians 3:5-6)
We are ministers of a new covenant, not of letter but of spirit.
God has said we are qualified to share with anybody and everybody how the Spirit has touched our life — how it has given life — to us through our own unique story.
We don’t have to be perfect and sinless, as I thought all those years ago. Imperfection is acceptable.
In fact, imperfection lends itself even better to sharing honestly with people about how God has touched our lives.