Numbers


Exams.

What a fun time of the semester. Love this week aka “hell” week because it is a life of terror consumed by the horror that is finals week. “Remember everyone, you are much more than a test grade.”

Even in high school, there was a good chance that you have felt defined by your GPA, ACT scores, numerical averages, test grades or the number of AP courses you took You may have felt inferior to a peer whose class rank is above yours. You may have been looked down upon because you take “regular” math instead of Accelerated Calculus. You may have felt less intelligent because everyone you know is taking more AP courses than you. Well for me, I constantly allowed low test grades to make me feel inferior.

People use those numbers to assign value, to decide who’s in and who’s out, who’s worth their time. They use them to put themselves above others, to feel better about themselves, to claim a temporary space in the world.

But we are so much more than a number.

A number is just a snapshot. It is one picture in a huge collage of the whole of who we are. And most of those outward numbers represent transient, arbitrary, and superficial aspects of our lives. They can change tomorrow, for better, or worse. They won’t be true of us in a week, a month, a year.

They are a poor foundation on which to establish our worth.

They do not measure how much we are loved. They do not measure how well we love others. They aren’t a measure of our intelligence, attractiveness, importance, or character.

They do not define what we give to the world. They do not define our gifts or passions. They do not define our worth in the eyes of God. They don’t add or subtract to any of that one iota.

Some numbers are necessary, for a time. That’s ok. Let’s hold them with a grain of salt, though, and remember that they do not name who we are. We are so much more than a number.

You deserve to be nicer to yourself. You are intelligent, loved and amazing either way.