I had lunch with a financial advisor friend a month or so ago. I arrived at the restaurant my typical ten minutes early (my family and baseball team know that as “Goldberg Time”) and was seated by the window with a view of the front door. The restaurant is a great little bistro with excellent food and is normally crowded, but this particular day it was fairly empty. In fact, other than me, there was only a single other guy at a table in the corner. Before my friend arrived, I was enjoying the spectacular (free) sweet potato fries and catching up on an email or two when the front door opened. I looked up to discover that the guy who had just walked in was not my friend. The new arrival was standing just inside the door when the guy sitting in the corner asked, gesturing at me, “Are you here to meet him?” New guy looked at me and then back at corner sitting guy and said, “Nah, he’s just some guy.”
Some guy? Seriously? Are you kidding me? Doesn’t he know who I am? As all of those questions ran through my mind simultaneously, I actually started to chuckle. I grew up with parents who thought I hung the moon. They taught me that I was a unique person, irreplaceable, with a special place in the world. In fact, my Mom’s nickname for me was “Mr. Wonderful.”
So who was this tool that had the nerve to call me “some guy?”
The reality is that no matter how important we think we are, to most people on the planet, we are all “just some guy.”
I have been thinking about that encounter for a month now, wrestling with the fact that in reality, I am just one of approximately six billion humans on the planet. With those numbers, how much of a difference can I really make in my 80 plus or minus years here? How much good can I do and what will people remember about me when I’m gone? Those are some of the interesting questions that we discuss with families every day in our law practice. They become even more interesting when you discuss them in the context of your own life, with your own family.
Psalm 139:14 says that I am fearfully and wonderfully made. And Jeremiah 29:11 says that God has a plan for me and my life, a plan to prosper me and not to harm me, a plan to give me hope and a future. So, what’s that mean? It means that the human body is the most complex and unique organism in the universe. It also means that each of us, individually, is different from everyone else who was ever born, or who will ever be born. We are each unique, different and special. It’s an interesting discussion and a topic much more deserving of a deeper conversation than a simple blog post.
So, here’s my conclusion on the “just some guy” issue. While most of us won’t ever win a Nobel Prize or walk on the moon, we each have a purpose and a place in the overall plan. Maybe your purpose isn’t seemingly as “important” as someone else’s, but you can sure make a difference in your own little part of the world. In short, while to most of the world you may be just some guy and just one person, maybe to that one person, you just may be the whole world.