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When I Wore My Shirt Inside-Out to Work

When I Wore My Shirt Inside-Out to Work

I will make you jealous of those who are not a nation; with a foolish nation I will make you angry. Romans 10:19

I wear scrubs to work most days and a week or two ago, I must have gotten dressed in the dark, because I put my scrub shirt on inside-out. Some scrubs are reversible. Mine are not that kind. My seams and tag were quite noticeable – except that I didn’t notice. A nurse had to point it out to me, but not until I’d already seen several patients. It was a little embarrassing and so, I tried to save face. I totally meant to do that. It’s how all the cool doctors wear their scrubs . . . For a moment, in my unwillingness to admit fault, I even contemplated keeping my shirt inside-out to prove I meant to do it. For whatever reason, there was a part of me that just didn’t want to admit that I required correction. I’m always right. I don’t need anyone’s help because I figure things out myself.

This flaw – an unwillingness to accept outside help – is similar to the flaw of which Paul wrote in today’s passage. In the narrative, Paul lamented that his fellow Israelites refused to follow Christ, while the gentiles accepted him. This apparently drove the Israelites further away from Jesus because they weren’t going to follow those whom they deemed to be beneath them. We’re God’s chosen. We don’t require the help of an inferior people. We’ll find God our way. In their pride, they remained utterly lost.

This flaw of course, isn’t limited to my workwear or the Israelites. Many addicts have relapsed or failed to find recovery because they’ve refused to listen. The addict’s primary flaw is that he follows his appetite above all, but even if he stops using, he still thinks he knows whats best for him and finds it incredibly difficult to follow anyone but himself.

The painful, difficult lesson for us is – humility in all things. If we want to find God and if we desire recovery and the new life, we must accept that we cannot do it alone. We need God and we need each other. Daily, it’s our duty to abandon our self-destructive path to follow Christ. And when someone tells us we’re doing it wrong – or that our shirt is inside-out – we must consider the possibility that we require correction.

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