Giving up competency

Image source: see notes
Image source: see notes

I’ve been wondering if I’m obsessed with being competent.

Seems strange to obsess about competency, doesn’t it?  Isn’t competency merely basic – just sufficient?

Perhaps I suffer from a low self-image.  I excel at little.  Rather, I focus on attaining competency and then “advance” to being reliable, dependable, consistent.  Not the “sharpest tool” or the “brightest bulb” but I finish what I start. I hold up my end.  You can count on me.

Mere competency sounds simple enough except I sometimes avoid doing what I doubt I will be competent in – even innocent little games.

I’m reluctant to classify my competency obsession as prideful. How harmful can competency be?

Then I read this by Osward Chamber, “Anyone will give up wrong things if she or he knows how to, but will I give up the best I have for Jesus Christ?  If I am only willing to give up wrong things, never let me talk about being in love with Him!”  (from “Biblical Ethics”)

What dawned on me was that I don’t bring anything useable to Christ that he truly needs, even my competence. What he wants is me, fully committed to obediently do his will whether or not I feel I can be sufficient at it.

“Such is the confidence that we have through Christ toward God. Not that we are sufficient in ourselves to claim anything as coming from us, but our sufficiency is from God,” (2 Corinthians 3: 4-5, NIV)

I am eight weeks into another new job, my thirteenth in less than seven years. Each new position presented a unique learning curve.  In very few did I ever attain true competency before I was gone for one reason or another, off to some other new thing.

For a guy who prides himself at reliable competency, finding myself in a semi-constant state of “less-than competency” is intolerable. Now here is the Lord (through Chambers) suggesting I give up to him what I am best at.  Really Lord?.

As I thought about this, a surprising sense of peacefulness came over me.

What if God did not bring me to this (or any) new position because of what I bring or can do here?  What if God’s reasons had only to do with me just being in this workplace and present with the people here just as I am, a new creation in Christ?

“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!” (2 Corinthians 5:17, NIV)

Think about. To live as, and to be, the new man Christ is making me into sort of puts continued obsession over competency in its proper place, right?

What would that best be for you that God wants you to give up in order to be fully available to him?  Thoughts?

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Notes:

Image source: http://keivindupreez.blogspot.com/2010/03/three-aspects-about-mecompetent.html

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