“Lord lift me up and let me stand . . . Lord plant my feet on higher ground” *
In life there are those who will help you and there are those who will not. For whatever reason, the latter will choose to use every opportunity to let you know you are not perfect, that you have flaws, that you are not as good as someone else.
I know my flaws and it doesn’t take much to bring them to my remembrance, to bring me down, even in the midst of accomplishment.
When I decided to improve my lot in life and go back to school, there were many people who encouraged me and even more who helped me achieve my goal to earn a college degree, however there were a very few who were less than encouraging to me.
I remember one class that I struggled in and after I completed a mid-semester paper and received a grade of “B-“; I asked the professor if I could rewrite the paper to possibly improve that grade.
“Yes,” he quickly responded, “Sure.”
After a tremendous amount of extra work and a greatly improved product, the professor smirked as he changed my grade to a “B+”.
Even though I was devastated, doing all of that extra work and having it make zero difference to my grade point average, I didn’t let it deter me.
I stayed in the class and continued working hard to earn as high a grade as I could. After completion of the course work I stopped by the professor’s office to find out my final grade.
He was very pleased as he opened his grade book and pointed to the “A-“ I had received for my semester grade. He smiled as he looked up at me and said, “I am sorry but not enough for a 4.0.”
The look on his face turned to one of puzzlement as my face brightened and then as his smile completely disappeared he said, “You are under the old system, aren’t you?”**
My smile got even bigger as I nodded, “Yes.”
He and I both realized at the same moment that I had earned the highest grade possible but with two diametrically opposed opinions at my achievement.
I walked out repeating under my breath, “Four-Point-O, Four-Point-O, Four-Point-O, Four-Point-O, Thank You Father in Jesus’ name.”
“But thou, O LORD, art a shield for me; my glory, and the lifter up of mine head” Psalms 3:3 KJV
Heavenly Father, I lift up all who read these words and I ask you to encourage each one of them in Jesus’ name!
To close, be encouraged by the words of those who lift you up and reject the words of those who would diminish you.
Wayne Brady 2/8/2016
Footnote: I didn’t earn a perfect grade for my time in college because of some of my earlier grades but I did graduate magna cum laude from a major university.
*From the hymn: Lord Lift Me up and Let Me Stand, lyrics by Johnson Oatman Jr.
**Grade point systems: For years average grades from 91-100 were an “A” & earned a 4.0, from 81-90 were a “B” & earned a 3.0, from 71-70 were a “C” & earned a 2.0, and 61-70 was a “D” & earned a 1.0, and anything less was a failure & earned zero. These numbers were used to calculate a student’s grade point average. Later a number of colleges changed the system to reflect something more, such as in the new system a grade of 97-100 may be an “A+” for a 4.33, 93-96 an “A“ for a 4.0, 91-93 an “A-“ for a 3.67, etc.
I started under the older system and was able to remain in it through graduation. The older system was kinder to me.
Encouragement we all need, daily. When things try to get me down I remember the words to that old Hymn. Thanks so much, Wayne.
Wayne, you are such an encouragement to us. Thank you for putting into words how much it means to choose our words and be an encouragement to others. You’ll always be an A+ guy in my book.