A flight attendant once said to the then heavyweight champion of the world, Mohamed Ali, please fasten your seat belt. He replied with a sneer, “Superman don’t need no seat belt.” “Superman don’t need no aeroplane!” She responded. “Buckle up please.”
Ever suffered with ‘Superman syndrome’? I guess we all have from time to time! I thank God for those who have had the courage to encourage me to ‘buckle up’ over the years. Why? Arrogance is never attractive. What do you do to keep who you are and what you have achieved in perspective? Alex Haley, the author of Roots, had a novel way of keeping himself humble. He used to keep a picture in his office of a turtle sitting on top of a fence. He kept it there to remind him of a lesson he had learned years before: “If you see a turtle on a fence post, you know he had some help.” Haley remarked, “Anytime I start thinking, ‘Wow, isn’t this marvellous what I’ve done”‘ I look at that picture and remember how this turtle (me) got up on that post.”
A smart guy! Here’s a poem that helps us keep things in perspective. It is mockingly entitled “Indispensable Man.”
Sometime when you’re feeling important; sometime when your ego’s in bloom
Sometime when you take it for granted you’re the best qualified in the room,
Sometime when you feel that you’re going would leave an unfillable hole,
Just follow these simple instructions and see how they humble your soul;
Take a bucket and fill it with water, put your hand in it up to the wrist,
Pull it out and the hole that’s remaining is a measure of how you’ll be missed.
You can splash all you wish when you enter, you may stir up the water galore,
But stop and you’ll find that in no time it looks quite the same as before.
The moral of this quaint example is do just the best that you can,
Be proud of yourself but remember there’s no indispensable man.
The Psalmist writes: When I consider your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have set in place,what is man that you are mindful of him, the son of man that you care for him? What is man indeed? It really is all about perspective. When we have a big view of God it is very difficult to get an inflated view of self. If I’m honest the closer I walk with God the more amazed I am that he wants to walk with me at all!