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Essay by Don Lane: "Who God Created You to Be"

March 19, 2017

 

 

 

 

Who God Created You to Be

 

 

     Have you ever looked into the mirror with thoughts dancing around in your head about how nice it would be if you could be someone else, or if you were more like some of your friends? Thoughts like, “They seem to have it all together: good looks, good hair, flawless complexion, much taller than I, cuter figure, good in sports, sings or dances better, and more likable.” The list is endless for what we see as positives in others and lacking in us. This is nothing unusual; we all do it. Your friends may be wishing they were more like you.

    When we start comparing ourselves with wishful thinking, we never seem to measure up and see ourselves as good enough in our comparison. Do you ever want to be like someone so badly that you begin to act, walk, talk, and even dress like this person in an effort to become that person? In your efforts to be like someone else, you hide who God created you to be. You are depriving us of your beauty, a beauty so unique that the angels in heaven sing praises for such a gift given to the world. You are a gift and must remain true to your gift.

      You’ve heard the saying, “They broke the mold when they made you.” That’s a true statement. There will never be anyone just like you ever again, never.  Remove your camouflage image and let the world see you with all your potential just waiting to be released. Embrace your dreams and cling to the desires inside you. Declare your intentions to God and see all the angels come and stand at your side. It will happen, and you will never be the same. Ready yourself for your great adventure.

     As you begin to blossom in this new life, some of your friends may look at you and wonder who this person is. Some may try to discourage you from becoming that person. They may begin speaking words of discouragement in an effort to derail you from reaching your fullest potential. Jesus said we are to love everyone; this is required from each of us without exceptions. The time may come for your own good to love some of your friends from a distance.

     There’s a story in the Bible where Jesus was asked to give life back to a little girl who had died. (Luke 8:51-56.) The girl’s room was full with those mourning her death. When Jesus arrived, He told the people, “The girl is not dead. She’s only sleeping.” When those in the room heard this, they laughed and jeered at Jesus. What He did next is significant to us. He showed them the door. He asked them to leave the room. Only Peter, James, John, and the girl’s parents were allowed to stay as He performed the miracle of bringing this child back to life.

     If some of your friends are not giving you the encouragement you need, you may find it necessary to follow Jesus’ lead and show them the door. This is what I mean when I say you may have to love some friends from a distance. You can help them, pray for them, and remain their friends from a distance, but don’t let them pull you down or discourage you from what God wants for you. You have a life to live and a mission with your name on it. Connect with people that love you and are willing to help you reach your destiny.

     Friendship is the basis of all fruitful love. Jesus was very close to Peter, James and John. There were nine other disciples, but these three seemed to be invited to accompany Him more often than the others. Who you have in your inner circle is very important. You and God make a majority. Still, you will need support to stay true to yourself if you are to accomplish your destiny. A good friend will build you up with kind words and never tear you down with unkind words. You need to be a good friend as well, encouraging others and experiencing the connection of love developing between you.

     When I made the decision to become a Christian, I had friends trying to discourage me with statements like, “Your fun days are over, big mistake. You’re going to lose some of your best friends because of this.” That was many years ago, and I still have no regrets with my decision. Life is too short, time too valuable, and your destiny too great to let anyone pull you down and keep you from what God has in store for you. God wants nothing more than to encounter you as the person you are, your true self.

     Today is the first day of the rest of your life. Make the most of it. There are no rewinds or do-overs in life. You’re going to make mistakes (sin), we all do. The good news is, when you invited Jesus to come into your heart, you became connected to God and are now a child of the most high. Feelings of hatred, jealousy, pride, lust, greed, and fighting can be replaced with the fruits of the Holy Spirit: “love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control” (Galatians 5: 22-23).

     It will not be easy rooting out the negatives in your life. This is something we all struggle with daily. The good news is we are not alone in our battles. We have the Holy Spirit to help and guide us. The Holy Spirit is our bridge to God. He is our constant resource and companion.  Pray and seek his counsel and have faith and trust knowing your prayers will be answered.

     In the beginning of your prayer life you may think, “I’m doing my part. I’m praying every day asking God for help. When is He going to answer my prayers and do His part? Is God listening?” We live in a world that wants and expects results quickly. Prayer is not like text messaging. You may not have your response so quickly. God looks at time differently than you and I. Trust me. He hears every prayer and is never late in answering our prayers. Praying will require patience and discipline.

     Let me give you an example of how we sometimes assume what we want is not going to happen. I have a friend who lived in L.A. She came to Portland on a job interview. Weeks went by and not a word back about the job. Later in a conversation with me, my friend said, “I didn’t get the job.”

     I asked, “Did they explain why?”

     She responded, “I haven’t actually heard from them. It’s been so long since I interviewed for the job, I just figured it’s not going to happen.” A short time after our conversation, she received a call telling her she had the job.

    It can be the same when we pray. We think, “It’s been so long, and nothing is happening.” Learn to pray with expectation.  Have faith and trust God. He will not disappoint you. You will receive an answer to your prayer in due time. The lesson we all need to learn is to become more patient in our prayer life. As you become more comfortable praying, you will begin to discover how much God loves you and wants to be included in your life.

    You will develop a desire to pray for your friends and want to share with them what God is doing in your life. Don’t be afraid to share your story with your friends, and don’t worry about what you will say. The Bible says we are to have faith and trust in the Holy Spirit to give us the words when needed. God has given us our tongue to speak words of encouragement to each other and has given us the Holy Spirit to pray for our needs, the needs of others, and to praise Him for all His goodness. You will learn to do this with a loving and sincere heart. Believe when you pray, and you will experience the power of Jesus. You will see positive changes take place in your life.

     In conclusion, let me share one more Bible story with you. It’s the story of a rich young ruler. (Mark 10:17-22.)  Even though it’s a story about someone who is rich, this story can be applied to us all.  If we look closely we will see an underlying theme in this story.

     This young ruler said to Jesus, “I have kept all the commandments since my youth. What do I still lack?”  

     Jesus answered, “If you want to be perfect, go, sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasures in Heaven. Then come, follow me.”

     When the young man heard this, he went away sad because he was unwilling to give away his wealth. I’m not suggesting we have to give away our possessions in order to be a worthy follower of Jesus. The point to the story is the rich young ruler was willing to do everything “but” this one thing to become a follower of Jesus.

     When it comes to making the decision to follow Jesus more completely, many today say the same thing, “I’m willing, but . . .” When you talk to God, what is your limitation? Is it, “Lord, I will do anything but . . . ,” or, “Lord, I will deal with anyone but . . .”? Is it, “Lord, I can forgive everything but . . . ,” or, “Lord, I will love everyone but . . .”? Don’t become like the rich young ruler who walked away sad.  Life is too short and your destiny too important to walk away sad.

     The possibilities for your life are endless. Don’t let anything become a hindrance in your life. Allow the Holy Spirit to guide and protect you as you begin your life’s journey. Have faith and trust, and God will help you along your way. Isn’t it great to know that the creator of Heaven and Earth has our backs?  

© Don Lane

 

 

 

Don Lane, who grew up in Michigan and retired from a railroad career with Southern Pacific and Union Pacific, lives with his wife and their dog in Beaverton, Oregon. Don writes spiritual, spirit-filled messages to provide hope, encouragement and inspiration to family, friends and others.

 

 

 

     

 

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