Matthew 23:12: “For whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and whoever humbles himself will be exalted.”
I realized something this past weekend. Corn stalks look strong, like a tree trunk, but in actuality, they are really quite weak. The littlest amount of pressure can either bend them, or completely break them off.
That got me thinking about that bully at your child’s school, the annoying co-worker who constantly needles your faith or your clothes or your preference for music, not to mention the road rage driver, crabby waitress, or nosy neighbor. Are all these people really that strong, or are they more like corn stalks and when a little pressure is applied, their value and character crumbles?
Cucumber vines, on the other hand, are quite sturdy. There vines look delicate and fragile, including the beautiful flowers, but they are tough. They grow up, around, under, and through just about anything. And, to try and break a vine off or unravel it from a fence requires a little bit of muscle.
I want to be less like a corn stalk and more like a cucumber vine. I want to be someone who is delicate and sweet on the outside but has a sturdy base formed by strong character. I want to be someone who doesn’t sway easily regarding my convictions but is still willing to listen to other people’s opinions. I want to be someone who will stand up for what I believe in but does it without bulldozing over people or their feelings. I want to be someone who is the same at home as I am with my friends as I am when I’m worshipping – that people will know who I am no matter what environment they happen to find me in.
So…The next time someone frustrates me in life or comes across as a little overbearing, I am going to ask myself the question if they are a corn stalk or a cucumber vine. Only really looking at the “produce” of their life will give me the answer. It might mean I have to take some time to get to know them, or at least give them the benefit of the doubt until their character is revealed. Eventually, their true self won’t be able to hide. Hmmmm….now that’s food for thought!