“Don’t imagine that I’ve been selected to go…because I’m anyone in particular. One never can see, or not till long afterwards, why any one was selected for any job. And when one does, it is usually some reason that leaves no room for vanity. Certainly, it is never for what the man himself would have regarded as his chief qualifications.”C.S. Lewis, Perelandra, 24.
C.S. Lewis is constantly dropping little gems like this one in his stories. The themes of pride and humility are central. Here, the protagonist demonstrates an insight that gives us a glimpse of his humility–which turns out to be his chief qualification for the important mission he’s asked to do.
I spent a lot of time in the weight room when I was in high school. The room has a lot of mirrors–ostensibly so you can see your form, and learn to lift with good technique. This of course, is the chief justification for admiring your physique as you “get ripped.” And not-so-secretly hope that others in the room are admiring you too. (I’m sure less vain folks knew how to do this activity in humility–my high school self certainly wasn’t one of them)
I met and began dating Diedra (my now wife) in high school. If you asked her what the attraction was in the beginning, she won’t mention the letter jacket or muscles. She saw me at “See You at The Pole”–an early morning prayer meeting. Next she’ll mention hearing the Christian radio station in my car when a whole group of us went out for lunch.
Certainly not reasons that leave room for vanity! Only thanksgiving to the One who was forming me in deeper ways in spite of myself.