I was nearing a four-way stop intersection, when the Amish buggy approaching from the right pulled out in front of me without ever stopping. “What?!” I said out loud. “Does having a horse at the front of your vehicle exempt you from obeying the road signs? Trust me, you’re not that special.”
Then I remembered that there are times when we all think we are special. Too special to follow the rules. At least in this instance (whatever this instance is).
- I want Barnes & Noble to let me use this coupon since it only expired yesterday and it would save me some cash.
- You might want your child’s teacher to give extra credit “just this once” because your precious doesn’t deserve a bad grade.
- That guy thinks the law against texting while driving is meant for those less proficient than he is; he’s an exceptional driver.
Why is it we feel we deserve more than the average person? Why do we believe we are the exception to whatever the rule, the law, the policy, the standard, is?
Because I’m selfish. And no offense, but my guess is that sometimes you are too.
What if instead of acting as if I’m special (or even worse, actually believing I am), I chose to make the other person feel special?
“Honor one another above yourselves,” says Romans 12:10.
What if instead of speaking rudely to that “uncooperative” salesperson, I listened and accepted her answer, if I honored her and was kind?
“Remind the people to be subject to rulers and authorities, to be obedient, to be ready to do whatever is good, to slander no one, to be peaceable and considerate, and always to be gentle toward everyone.” (Titus 3:1–2)
What if we actually obeyed traffic laws—whether we are in a car, on a bike or behind a horse?
What does it take for me “to be peaceable and considerate and always . . . gentle toward everyone”?
It takes the power of the Holy Spirit. It’s not something I can do in my own strength. Lord knows I’ve tried.
“Those who live in accordance with the Spirit have their minds set on what the Spirit desires. The mind governed by the flesh is death, but the mind governed by the Spirit is life and peace.” (Romans 12:5–6)
So I may not be special enough to warrant exceptions to the rules. But I can be specially empowered by the Spirit of the Living God. And that’s special.