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Sunday, August 19, 2007

Right or Holy?

My family is so lucky they have me. I shudder to think of their floundering about should I happen to disappear. I mean, seriously, without me they wouldn't know the right way to fill the dishwasher, the right way to get to any destination, the right way to say prayers at night, or the right way to organize the pantry. I happen to be blessed with the precise knowledge for performing perfectly every task in our home and then some. Nothing would be done correctly without my presence.

Yikes! When I put it that way, I don't sound very pleasant, do I?

And yet, I have been infected since birth with a very serious personality disorder.

Right-itis: n, a condition common in, but not exclusive to, first-born children that attacks the infected person with an unquenchable need to be right at all times. It often results in conflict with family members. It is not contagious in peer groups but can be spread down generational lines.

I come from a proper Italian family and can argue with the best of 'em. I also do a mean "I told you so...". I enjoy being right, don't you?

As I've gotten older, however, a question keeps knocking at my door:

Would I rather be right, or would I rather be holy?

I don't think I can be both.

Oh, sure, I can be right some of the time. I can even be right most of the time and achieve holiness. But I need to shed the prideful desire to show others that I'm right like a snake sheds its skin. It might take some wriggling and rubbing against something rough, but eventually I will leave it behind.

What, then, does holiness look like?

Holiness is the habit of being of one mind with God, according as we find His mind described in Scripture. It is the habit of agreeing in God's judgement-hating what He hates-loving what He loves-and measuring everything in this world by the standard of His Word. He who most entirely agrees with God, he is the most holy man.

Sure, I might just happen to know the best way to the ice cream shop in rush hour traffic, but what does that matter? Is showing frustration when no one puts the toys away in their correct bins going to bring me closer to "being of one mind with God"? I don't think so.

I need treatment for my condition. Treatment that is eternal. I need Jesus.

"This RIGHTeousness from God comes through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. There is no difference, for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus."
Romans 3:22-24

Come visit me at my blog home, Fruit in Season.

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Blogger Amy Grant said...

Would I be enabling you if I said that you were right? :o)

Great post... I can relate all too well!

August 18, 2007 at 11:22 PM  
Blogger Christi said...

Goodness... I suffer from this condition, too. Thank for the reminder.

August 19, 2007 at 8:19 AM  
Blogger Susanne said...

Love Amy's comment.

From one first born to another; I can totally relate to this post. Ouch!

August 19, 2007 at 9:43 AM  
Anonymous SingForHim @ RealLife said...

As a first born suffering from right-itis, thank you for this post. I would much rather be righteous(only by the grace of God) than right.

August 19, 2007 at 1:59 PM  
Anonymous Lynn said...


Girl.... I get you.... I hope I am traveling down the same road to surrender my need to always be right. I am trying really hard.

Great Post!!

August 19, 2007 at 5:43 PM  
Blogger Bernadine said...

As a last born I think this is the perfect article to pass on to my older siblings lol, thank you for this post. I too can totally relate.

BTW, I love your introduction, it definitely caught my attention.

August 19, 2007 at 8:11 PM  
Blogger Cyndi said...

I was nodding my head during this whole post! Especially as a first born, married to a first born (we both married Mr. and Mrs. Right!)Somebody's ALWAYS right around here...

Great post!

August 19, 2007 at 10:01 PM  
Blogger Angie said...

Okay...I too am a firstborn...I saw myself over and over in this post!
I needed to "hear" this message!
God bless you!

August 21, 2007 at 8:29 AM  
Blogger The Preacher's Wife said...

YOu are calling out all first borns today - of which I am one as well!

It occurs to me if there are this many first born, type A's in one place, perhaps our need to express our opinions is why we blog?

hmm..something to think about! :))

August 21, 2007 at 10:07 AM  
Blogger Vicki said...

Oh, wow,I'm a first-born too. Yikes.

I'm so pleased to find such good posts here...something that edifies women and encourages our walk with the Lord. Blessings on your week!

August 23, 2007 at 4:04 PM  

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