Just some early morning thoughts from me to you…
“The Lord will fulfill His purpose for me; your love, O Lord, endures forever—do not abandon the works of your hands.” Psalm 138:8 (NIV)
One month into the New Year with King David, and you and me.
Hold that thought for a moment, because first, I want you to do something for me, and for yourself.
Right where you are now, take a look at your fingertips—not just the chapped skin or chipped nails from the cold weather—but look closely at the whorls and lines on the inner surface of the last joint of your finger. We learned the truth in grade-school that our fingerprints are unique to each of us—no one else has the same pattern of whorls or lines. Now work your way down to the palms of your hands, looking closely at the configuration of lines and markings you see there. Stop for a moment and think about this truth—what you just saw is unique—no one else in the world, now or ever, has or had what you just saw.
Okay. Keep going. Look at your wrist, forearms and arms. Thin wrist, or thick, or somewhere in between. Shoulders. Chest. Stomach. Hips. Legs. Ankles. All the way down to your feet and toes. Same truth for you to embrace: that no one else—now or ever—has or had what you just saw. Now there is something about that truth which screams—“Special”—“The Very Best There Is”—“A Gloriously Perfect Child of God.”
Yet if you have had some of the same experiences which I have—even perhaps during this past week—it seems clear that the world doesn’t see you, or me, that way. Because if they did, the world would cherish each of us the way the God Who created us does. But instead we too often get put down by others, or we—think about this for a moment now, especially as it may apply to our spouses or children—put others down ourselves. And God’s voice from above which is whispering: “Special, or Best, Perfect, A Child of God”, is drowned out in the chorus of boos, criticism and put-downs from the world around us.
It may all be unintended. Comments, facial expressions, a tone of voice, ignoring you over others. I’ve been guilty of all of those, and I have been the recipient of all of those. You have, too.
Perhaps it’s our circumstances that we allow to put us down. Others seem to be dressed better than we are, or seem more in control than we, are more polished, have better jobs or more money, a nicer home or cars. And people around them seem to be attracted to them, while we stand against the wall wishing this moment in public would end, or that someone who loves us—anyone—would come to rescue and affirm us.
Perhaps it’s our past track record which we allow to put us down. As our feet hit the floor each morning, all we can remember are the problems and mistakes of yesterday, and the criticisms of others. All we seem to remember is our last failure at school, or at work, or in an interaction with our children. You wonder—as you make your way to the bathroom to wash your face and brush your teeth—if you will ever get it right. The failures and mistakes—you just can’t seem to shake them from the present back into the past where they belong.
Now before you brush your teeth, look at yourself again in that mirror in front of you. Look deeper, past the mussed hair, wrinkles sleep-filled eyes. Past the uniqueness of the way you look on the outside we just rediscovered. Look deeper this time, into the feelings, passions, abilities, talents, desires, gifts that are within you—or which you believe are within you. See them? Keep looking, you will. See them, now?
Good. Then here’s another truth: No one has the same potential, the same gifts, abilities, passions, desires, talents, platforms, or intended purposes which you have—no one. You were wired, created, formed and sent forth by God like no one else—to do what no one else can or is supposed to do.
Now back to King David. A few thousand years ago, David—a shepherd boy anointed by God as King—committed adultery and murder. The Psalms he wrote thereafter—like the one set out above—reflected those past deeds, and the guilt, anguish and undeserving feelings he had for the position he continued to occupy. But they also reflected God’s grace, God’s enduring love and forgiveness for David—and for you and for me. Corrected, redirected and loved by his God and ours, David moved on to lead the people of Israel.
Just like you and me.
We are unique—on both the outside and inside. Uniquely created by the God who knew what the world would be like when we lived and knew what the world would need when we lived. Not perfect and as a result there will be times when we fall short—and where the grace of the God who created us will pick us back up and send us back out. The same God who is always busy creating and placing within each of us unique gifts, passions, abilities, talents, potential, desires, platforms and purposes of our lives, so that we might become all He intended for us to be.
Now here’s a final truth to embrace: With the God of all creation behind us, and with all that He put within us, who or what do you think can put us down or keep us from becoming all He intended for us to be?
You’re right—no one can and nothing will!
Now go and be all He created you to be!
In His Name—Scott
Copyright 2013. Scott L. Whitaker. All rights reserved.