Have you ever spent the afternoon tag-less? Exactly what does that mean? Let me tell you what happened to me and you’ll get the idea. I went to a seminar recently. After finding my assigned room and signing in, I quickly wrote my name on my name tag and proceeded into the conference room.
I sat on the front row, of course, because I’m a ‘first row’, Type A, kind of person. I was extremely excited about being there and didn’t want to miss a thing. I wanted to make eye-contact with the presenter… you know, smile and show that I was attentive.
I pushed back my chair to go get a muffin and tea. It was then that I noticed that seemingly everyone else had only their FIRST name written in bright red on their name tags. I had written my first and last name. And it was in blue not red. WELL!! That nervous feeling came over me. I retrieved my muffin and tea and took my place at the front table.
I then looked up on the screen where various slides were being shown prior to the speaker’s arrival. There it was. The slide said as clear as day, “Write only your first name on your tag.” That was all it took. I was out of compliance! Oh no!! Then my mind began to race, “Was there something special about these name tags that I didn’t know? Were the name tags going to be used in some sort of activity later on? OH MY!! Here I was sitting with both names on my tag instead of only one.
The conference began. The presenter had everyone to stand up. We had to sit when she called out the area of education we were in. I told her, “Music,” and sat down. The longer I sat, the more anxious I became. I sat there thinking about my ‘tag situation.’ I thought, “Okay, now what am I supposed to d0?” I discreetly took off my tag and using a red pen, I first tried to scribble out my last name. Oops. That didn’t work. They could still see my last name through the red. “Okay. I’ve got it, ” I thought. I grabbed my black ink pen and re-scribbled over my name. Then I looked at the name tag. “There, that got it.” I put it back on. I was in compliance now. Whew!
Then I slowly looked down at my tag. It looked so stupid with my last name scribbled out. “What could I do now?” I thought, “I know.” I took it off again, placing it on the table so I could fix it. The back of the tag started to stick to a napkin I had accidentally placed it on. Whew! I was able to unstick it just in the nick of time. I pulled off the little piece of napkin that hung on to one side, and tore the name tag down the middle. Breathing a sigh of relief, I placed the side with my first name on it back on my jacket. Yes!! I finally had it right. That was much better!
I sat there for a minute. Then I looked down again at my tag and thought, “Now you REALLY look stupid with half of a tag sitting on your chest!” So, I tore it off, folded it into a ball to be tossed out later. I would get a new tag when we had our first break of the morning. Break time finally came. I’m sure I don’t have to tell you that there were NO name tags when I went out to the sign-in table at break time. No one was around to help. So now I was in a real pickle.
There I was, sitting on the first row, in front of the lady, for the remainder of the day…. tagless. The presenter didn’t know my name so she couldn’t call on me. She was walking around the room calling on participants who had on name tags. “Jerry, what do you think about …” ” Kim, what did your group come up with?” Well, she couldn’t call on me because I was… tagless.
I was beginning to grow desperate. I really wanted to participate. I wanted her to call on me too. I looked down at my white cocktail napkin which was next to my water glass. Maybe I could scribble my name on the napkin and tape it to my chest. Yes, that was what I was actually thinking! Then suddenly a tickle began to rise up inside me. I thought about all of the insane things I had done all because I wrote my last name on my tag and I wanted to holler. (LOL)
Okay, so I had to endure the rest of the afternoon being invisible, but I made it. At the end of the conference, I walked up to the presenter’s product table to take a closer look at one of her books. She said, “Hi, I didn’t get your name. I noticed you didn’t have your name tag on today.” I fell out laughing.
I said, “Yes, I figured you probably looked at me and said, “There has to be one rebellious person in every group.” Then I told her all of the things that I had done and about my desperate napkin idea. She laughed with me and said, “Oh, I remember you. You are the music teacher.” “Yes, I replied, “that was before I took my tag off.” She laughed again.
I bought her book.
It was the least I could do after being tagless all day.
Seriously, I think that the book is going to be great for me. It was on how to help students with low self-esteem, by giving them hope. (Right up my alley, right? LOL)
Seriously, God does not want us to live our lives filled with anxiety over the mundane, trivial, or even serious events in our lives. Our self-esteem cannot be hinged to a name tag, a friend’s or family member’s opinion of us, what we have or do not have, or anything else other than God’s love for us. For truly we are valuable people… not because of anything that has to do with us, but all because of Him. He loves us unconditionally… whether we have a name tag or no tag.
Oh how He loves you and me. It is this great love God has for us that provides the hope we need to make it, regardless of any situation. We can make it. We are going to make it, for Jesus Christ is our peace, our joy, our strength, and our hope. Because of Him, we can make the journey!
Questions to consider:
1. Have you ever had an insane ‘tagless’ moment? What did you learn from it?
2. How does God renew your hope in times of low self-esteem and hopelessness?
Scriptures to consider:
Job 17:15 where then is my hope— who can see any hope for me?
Psalm 25:3 No one who hopes in you will ever be put to shame, but shame will come on those who are treacherous without cause.
Psalm 25:5 Guide me in your truth and teach me, for you are God my Savior, and my hope is in you all day long.
Psalm 25:21 May integrity and uprightness protect me, because my hope, Lord, is in you.
Psalm 31:24 Be strong and take heart, all you who hope in the Lord.
Psalm 33:18 But the eyes of the Lord are on those who fear him, on those whose hope is in his unfailing love,
Psalm 33:20 Our inner selves wait [earnestly] for the Lord; He is our Help and our Shield.
Psalm 33:22 22 Let Your mercy and loving-kindness, O Lord, be upon us, in proportion to our waiting and hoping for You.
Psalm 42:5 5 Why are you cast down, O my inner self? And why should you moan over me and be disquieted within me? Hope in God and wait expectantly for Him, for I shall yet praise Him, my Help and my God.
Psalm 62:5 5 My soul, wait only upon God and silently submit to Him; for my hope and expectation are from Him.
‘Until next time, remember there is hope in Christ and enjoy the journey!
2013 © God’s Perspective Publishing
This post has been republished from the archives in case you missed it. This summer, I am moving posts around and republishing some of the earlier lessons that you may not have read. I hope that something I’ve learned will help you along your journey.
Thank you for visiting with me. You don’t want to miss the next post on Enjoying the Journey3!