I've always had this little problem.

I like to succeed. I want to do well at the things I do. In school, this was fairly easy for me to do. I am a fast reader and good at taking tests. Those things combined to make me a pretty good student. I like doing my best and pushing myself to succeed. (This is the non-problem.) But deep down, part of me reveled my ability to do well - idolized the gifts God has given me. I secretly rejoiced in knowing that I did better than other people. (This is where it starts to be a problem.) Part of my identity as a person (unfortunately) comes from the fact that I have always been somewhere near the top of my class.

As a resident, I still want to do well and be the best. But obviously, I'm a young doctor. And we tend to make mistakes. Mostly it's just little things, learning how to manage patients, how to be organized and present information to our attendings well. But I was reminded today that I am still young and do need to work on a few things. And I did not like it one bit. I find my attitude to be stubborn as I mentally make excuses and my heart stiff as I feel personally attacked by these very appropriate reminders of how I can be a better doctor. A better servant of the Lord.

I realize that deep down, I still foolishly cling to this mute idol of success. I still am trying to trust in the gifts I've been given, and not in the giver.

I am a daughter of the King, loved and redeemed from the blackest pit of my own pride and wickedness by the ruler of the universe, who has chosen to soften my stony heart and cleanse the filth that is inside me and make me righteous. That is where my sole identity should be.

I praise him that he continues to work his grace deep into those stony crevices, and pray that he would continue to shed his light into the darknesses inside me, soothing this sad little heart with the healing balm that flows only from his cross.


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