Why Me, God?
I ask myself that question sometimes. Why me? Why did God choose that I be born into the family that I was born into? Why did he afford me place of such extreme privilege? I hear about the stories…the things that are happening in the other parts of the world and even in my own country, and it makes me realize how incredibly, unfairly blessed I am. I take these things for granted every day: running water, heat, an apartment of my own, a car, a stable job that I enjoy. Siblings with whom I have a strong bond, parents who have showered love on me from the moment I was born, the opportunity to attend a fantastic college. No one has ever persecuted me because of my religious beliefs, no one has ever threatened my safety in any way, and no one has ever bullied me.
The list is nearly infinite. And I think…why? Why have I been given so very much in this life? It is so very easy to take it all for granted and not connect with the reality that my life is abundantly privileged in every way.
Sometimes I feel this deeply abiding sense of guilt for the wonderful life I have led. I think about inspirational stories of people who have pulled themselves up from the ashes, who have been born into the most destitute of circumstances, found God, and went on achieve so much in the name of the Savior.
And I wonder: why don’t I feel as though I am on the path to achieve these things? I, who have had all the support in the world?
The more I reflect on this, the more I wonder…maybe I have it all backwards. After all, many of the men and women of God throughout the Bible who began their lives from a place of privilege were the worst examples of what it means to live a life bent to the will of the Father. Saul, Solomon, pretty much all the OT Israelite kings, the Pharisees—these people were all blessed with abundance and stature, and they were completely corrupted. And of course there are exceptions, such as David and Josiah in the OT, and Matthew the tax collector in the NT.
But most of the people Jesus chose as disciples were the ones who were barely scraping by, who knew little of what it means to live in comfort. And I have to wonder if this is because they were more malleable. They knew what it meant to be compelled to rely on another for their daily bread, and so perhaps their hearts were more teachable (though I can’t be certain—after all, Peter strikes me as pretty obstinate fellow!).
So I think there is room to feel grateful for my privilege, but also to realize that sometimes privilege can lead you to believe your life is a blessing from God instead of a hurdle that prevents you from learning utter dependence on Jesus. God gave me the life that he did for a reason, but I need to be aware of what this comfortable life that I have means in light of my relationship with the Lord.