I was at a brunch gathering recently.
The food had been prepared, the prayer had been offered, and the words had been spoken: “Fill your plates. Enjoy.”
Everyone stood still.
By norm, guests are supposed to eat first. I was not a guest. I waited a few moments. Nobody made a move toward the food. Instead they began looking at each other:
“No, you go.”
“No, you go first.”
I was standing somewhat apart from the others, observing the unfolding "drama," when a startling thought arose:
I am worthy.
I mean, maybe I’ve been to the food first before because, I’m selfish and hungry; or maybe, Who cares about a stupid norm; or maybe even some of both prior options with a dash of, Being first makes me look greedy, or, Being first is embarrassing.
But, I am worthy? This was something new.
In that moment it was revealed to me how undeserving so many of us view ourselves.
“You go, I’m not worthy.”
“No, you go. I’m even less worthy than you are.”
“No, you go first. I’m the least worthy of anyone here.”
A facade of humility over deep self-rejection.
For homemade waffles, eggs, and breakfast potatoes in abundance, no less (…and bacon for the carnivores).
So, while everyone was busy announcing how unworthy they were, I hopped in line; well, I created the line. Everyone else fell in right behind me.
There was no shame.