This week, while preparing to teach in a new state, at a new school, for a new school year, I taped a poignant prayer to my computer monitor.
It wasn’t the masterful, insightful words of a Francis of Assisi, or Teresa of Avila, or even an average pastor on an average Sunday morning. It did not ask God to glorify himself through me, or to make me a better man, better teacher, or better Christian.
It was far more basic and less spiritual:
“Dear Lord, help me not to be a jerk today.”
That’s all. I wish it were something more profound, but the truth is – sometimes I can be a jerk.
There are a number of reasons my jerk nature erupts. Sometimes it’s because I just disagree with someone about something. Or I’m ticked off about the way something went. Or – here’s a big one – some authority over me (say, my employer, or my local government) implements a policy that I hate.