We ask how much a man has done, but from what degree of virtuous principle he acts, is not so studiously considered.We inquire whether he be courageous, rich, handsom, skillful, a good writer, a good singer, or a good laborer; but how poor he is in spirit, how patient and meek, how devout and spiritual, is seldom spoken of.
-Thomas A Kempis, The Imitation of Christ, Book III, Chapter 31
I often ask this myself. Both of men and peers in church and in the world. I have admired the courageous. I have certainly been jealous of the rich. Cynical of the handsome, especially when riches seem to come to them as a result. I know I have some fine skills. I wish I had others too. I could be a good writer if I wasn’t so slow. I could have been a good singer had I invested more time into it. My labors are a mixed bag: some good examples, some lousy.
“Man looks on the outside, but the Lord looks on the heart.” Too bad that outside success still holds such social capital, even within the church community. Even largely in my own heart.