Both artists had chart-topping hit songs with this same title. And both songs were sung from the perspective of a person seeking to be accepted by someone they loved.
Eglesis puts it this way:
Why, oh why, tell me why not me? Why, oh why, we were meant to be.
Baby, I know I could be all you need. Why, oh why, oh why?
I wanna love you. If you only knew how much I love you. So, why not me?
While the Judds put it this way:
Why not me, on a rainy day? Why not me, to love your cares away?
Why not me?
Why not me, when the nights get cold? Why not me, when you're growin' old?
Why not me?
It is not surprising that both these songs topped their respective charts. No doubt, this is due to the fact that people in every time and place can relate – not just to the question being asked, but also to the perspective from which it is being asked.
But let me hasten to suggest that the question “Why not me?” can also be asked from an entirely different perspective. In addition to inquiring why someone is not being accepted, it can also be asked to inquire why someone is not stepping up and embracing some given responsibility. Allow me to elaborate.
Brian Harbour puts out a monthly newsletter for Christian communicators titled SeminaryPLUS. The July, 2020 edition contains an insightful story that bears repeating here. According to Dr. Harbour:
A young man went to church on Sunday, saw the empty pews, turned and walked away, and wondered why the church was doing nothing. “Why doesn’t somebody do something?” he protested.
Down the street, he heard the beer glasses tinkle, saw the drunk stagger, heard a child’s cry of hunger, and a curse piercing the calm night. And he asked: “Why doesn’t somebody do something?”
He scanned the headlines of the morning newspaper and noted the lack of morality in our nation and the lack of peace in our society. And he asked, “Why doesn’t somebody do something?”
And God answered all these challenges with this simple response: “Why don’t you?”
Dr. Harbour then observes:
That’s an important question. When you see a person who has needs that someone must meet, why don’t you? When your boss asks for a person to volunteer for an important job, why don’t you? When your child needs someone to put his arms around them and assure them that they are important, why don’t you? When you say to your spouse, “Something needs to be done to put a spark back into our marriage,” why don’t you?
The answer to most of the problems around us can be found within us. Look around this week – at home, in your neighborhood, and in the world. See all the jobs to be done; notice all the needs to be met; recognize all the people to be cared for. Who is responsible to do those jobs and meet those needs and care for those people? Look in the mirror and you will see the answer to that question. YOU ARE.
I challenge you today to personalize Dr. Harbour’s story, along with the piercing question with which he ends it. You can do this by simply changing “Why don’t you?” into “Why not me?”
After all, in the Bible, in the Old Testament Book of Isaiah (chapter 6, verses 1-8), the famed prophet was essentially asked this same question. We read:
1In the year that King Uzziah died, I saw the Lord seated on a throne, high and exalted; and the train of His robe filled the temple. 2Above Him stood seraphim, each having six wings: With two wings they covered their faces, with two they covered their feet, and with two they were flying. 3And they were calling out to one another: “Holy, holy, holy is the LORD of Hosts; all the earth is full of His glory.” 4At the sound of their voices the doorposts and thresholds shook, and the temple was filled with smoke.
5Then I said: “Woe is me, for I am ruined, because I am a man of unclean lips dwelling among a people of unclean lips; for my eyes have seen the King, the LORD of Hosts.”
6Then one of the seraphim flew to me, and in his hand was a glowing coal that he had taken with tongs from the altar. 7And with it he touched my mouth and said: “Now that this has touched your lips, your iniquity is removed and your sin is atoned for.”
8Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying: “Whom shall I send? Who will go for Us?” And I said: “Here am I. Send me!”
In many respects, Isaiah was presented with a fundamental question: “Why don’t you?” His answer was “Why not me!” And with that, he effectually stepped up and said “Here am I, use me Lord!”
In light of Isaiah’s experience, I leave you with two relatively certain and inevitable questions: “Why don’t we?” and “Why not us?”
LYRICS SOURCES: https://www.songlyrics.com/enrique-iglesias/why-not-me-lyrics/; and https://www.songlyrics.com/the-judds/why-not-me-lyrics/.
SCRIPTURE SOURCE: https://biblehub.com/bsb/isaiah/6.htm.
SEE ALSO: http://seminaryplus.org/newsletter.htm.