Posted in Christianity, Life, Thoughts

Just Being Okay

For the body does not consist of one member but of many. If the foot should say, “Because I am not a hand, I do not belong to the body,” that would not make it any less a part of the body. And if the ear should say, “Because I am not an eye, I do not belong to the body,” that would not make it any less a part of the body. If the whole body were an eye, where would be the sense of hearing? If the whole body were an ear, where would be the sense of smell? But as it is, God arranged the members in the body, each one of them, as he chose. If all were a single member, where would the body be? As it is, there are many parts, yet one body. – 1 Corinthians 12:17-20

On July 4th, my family and I went to a drive-in movie theater (which I’d never done before; it was cool) to see Despicable Me 2. We also stayed for the second movie, Monsters University, which is a sequel/prequel to Monsters, Inc. (Note: if you’re planning to see this movie and don’t want to know the ending ahead of time, you might want to stop reading now.)

As sequels-to-movies-that-weren’t-intended-to-have-sequels go, it was pretty good. But that’s not why I’m posting about it. I’m posting about it because I appreciated the message it gave.

It seems the politically correct thing is to tell people they can be anything they want to be. It doesn’t matter if you have little or no talent; if you want it enough and you are determined enough and you work at it hard enough, you can succeed. Look at all the sport movies where the scrawny guy nobody really wants on the team ends up improving so much he wins the big game for them.

Not that there’s anything wrong with hard work and determination, but I don’t agree with the you-can-be-anything-you-want-to-be philosophy. I don’t think it’s Biblical. Paul says in 1 Corinthians 12:4-7, “Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit; and there are varieties of service, but the same Lord; and there are varieties of activities, but it is the same God who empowers them all in everyone. To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good.” God gave people different abilities, and he wants us to use them, not seek to be something we are not designed for.

Anyway, back to Monsters University. The movie starts out with Mike Wazowski wanting to be a scarer; he’s wanted it all his life, despite not being scary. So he goes to college to study scaring. There he meets Sully, a scary monster who is the son of a famous scarer. At first it seems like a typical you-can-be-anything-you-want-to-be movie. There’s Mike who has no talent, but has all the determination in the world, and there’s Sully, who has so much talent he puts forth no effort. At the end, it seems that Mike wins the big competition for them.

But then it’s revealed that Sully rigged the competition so Mike could win. They’re kicked out of school, and Mike realizes that even though he knows everything there is to know about scaring, he will never be able to be a scarer himself. He tells Sully, “I’m okay with just being okay.” I was like, “Ooh! Wow! Was that line really just in a movie?!”

Of course, it’s a Pixar movie, so it doesn’t end quite there. Sully and Mike get jobs in the mail room at Monsters, Inc., and gradually they work their way up. Sully becomes a famous scarer, and Mike is his assistant and a big part of his success.

It’s such a happy ending. They use their talents to work together, and thus achieve more than either of them could have been alone. It kind of sounds like how Christ’s body is supposed to work. What we are designed to do may not seem as important as what someone else was designed to do, but when we work together, it results in something better than any of us could have achieved on our own.

If all were a single member, where would the body be? As it is, there are many parts, yet one body.

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