I'm not superstitious. I depend upon God to supply our basic plus unanticipated needs. Yet, a fortune cookie declared a good general message on Tuesday night as I watched the presidential election results.
That evening, I tidied areas in my home and prayed strength and guidance over our next president. Many of you did the same – prayed for our country. Maybe you weren’t tidying your house or maybe you were. While straightening, I found two unopened fortune cookies.
I don’t ever look to fortune telling for my future, because God alone provides for me. However, on a whim, I shuffled the two cookies wondering which one might provide at least an “aha” moment. I was hoping for a message that read, “Your candidate won the election because a voter from an obscure county in Oregon just cast the winning ballot.” Okay, okay, I know fortune cookies have no prediction power. I was only hoping because I was tired and wanted to sleep instead of waiting for election results.
While the message in the cookie wasn’t profound, the words suggested a godly way for citizens and those who hold public offices to succeed: "He climbs highest who helps another up." Does that sound vaguely familiar? Perhaps, the fortune cookie writers look at Bible verses and spin them. “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble" (James 4:6). I’m an advocate of everyone doing his or her part to give someone who has less a hand up.
This past week, I had the privilege of attending a CLASS writers’ seminar in Ghost Ranch, New Mexico because Cecil Murphey, co-author of “90 Minutes in Heaven” gave me a tuition scholarship. Murphey had many successes in ghost writing and some books had the fortune of becoming movies, “Gifted Hands” was one. He, in turn, gives writers scholarships to conferences where they network and hone their craft. He reached out to help me up.
Represented at this conference were organizations with which Christian audiences are familiar: Christian Broadcasting Network, Focus on the Family’s “Adventures in Odyssey” and “Clubhouse” magazines. Also present were editors and publishers of publications such as “The Upper Room,” and book publishers Revell, New Hope, WMU, and AMG. All spoke encouraging words, looked at manuscripts, and pointed writers to noble goals.
When I turned in my evaluation form, I noted two outstanding features of the conference: the willingness of each writer to help other writers and the ever present enthusiasm for fellow writer’s successes. Competition was absent because we all grabbed a hand and helped a fellow writer up.
Henry Cabot Lodge said, “The nation has not lived in vain which has given the world Washington and Lincoln, the best great men and greatest good men whom history can show.” Someone had given them a chance and helped them up, and each of these leaders reached out and helped this nation up.
Although we may never rise to heights of notice in the political field or on a football field, we can write our own fortune by maintaining humility, integrity, and reaching out to help someone up.
Hunger for Humility (Week: 45): “One man gives freely, yet gains even more.” (Proverbs 11:24)