The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America


April 21, 2009

Got talent?

Susan Boyle’s
appearance on Britain’s Got Talent drew snickers until she started to sing ... and then wow. For most, the moral of the story is “Don’t judge a book by the cover.”

But Chicago Tribune columnist Mary Schmich asked: “What if Susan Boyle couldn’t sing?” Her response: “She’d still be the kind of person some people avoid sitting next to on the bus. ... What’s the lesson? That we shouldn’t make fun of odd people because they might have talent?”

Schmich then tells about her sister who has struggled with a disability all her life but doesn’t have a  “dazzling talent. She can’t sing or dance. She paints and draws in ways that move me but elude the multitudes.” Her sister often feels “different.”

The column concludes: “The lesson I’d hope we take from Susan Boyle is that people deserve respect, however strange they are, even if they don’t have talent.”

I’d like to add to that: Respect all and don’t judge a person’s talent or gifts. After all, doesn’t God give everyone gifts and talents to share—even if they aren’t considered “normal”? Do you know such people?

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