It can be so easy to magnify our cracks and flaws; our issues, our mistakes, our shortcomings. But, what if we actually began to see ourselves from a different perspective? What if instead of seeing ourselves through the dirty, distorted lens of the world, we were to see ourselves through the clean, clear mirror of God? What if we spent time with Him, and I don’t just mean looking over a bible verse or two, but really invested quality time with Him to learn more about who we really are?
There is a children’s book by Max Lucado called, “You Are Special”, that speaks to this. (PSA: This is such an amazing book, and one of my favorites. It is short, simple and a must read). In this book, there are wooden people called Wemmicks, and they spending their days going around sticking beautiful, golden stars and dingy, grey dots on one another. Golden stars were for the ones that were able to do amazing things, and faded, plain dots were for those who couldn’t do things “right” or who they felt weren’t “good enough” at something. In this story, there’s a Wemmick named Punchinello. According to the standards and thoughts of the other Wemmick’s, he wasn’t good at much of anything. Even when he tried to do things the others did, he would mess up, and they would stick dots on him. His appearance, his voice, his clumsiness, and even his trying would earn him more faded dots. Soon he got so down that he didn’t want to be around anyone.
It’s easy for people to have a distorted perception of us because we don’t fit into their box of what is acceptable. People will tear us down in a heartbeat just because we aren’t what they expect or want. It can also be just as easy for us to do the same thing to others. I for one know that I am not everyone’s cup of tea…hahahah…and that’s okay!!! I’m just being me! None of us were created to fit into a nice, neat box that others made for us. If that was the case, we would all be frazzled, crazy people with hundreds and thousands of boxes attached to us to fit the mold of whoever we talked to. But, what if we chose to break out of our boxes, and be the phenomenally, wonderful people we were created to be? What if instead of trying to be what everyone else wanted, we would simply be us? What if we began to see ourselves the way Christ sees us?
That sounds really good, right? Just go out and be you!!! Yaaasss!!! But… if you’re going to go out and just be you, there’s now a question that’s attached to doing this, “Who am I”? This is where things seem to get a bit hazy. So many of us have surrendered to everything people have said we should be for so long, that we don’t even know who we are. The original, hard copy of ourselves has been mixed up, chopped up, and shuffled at different stages and phases of life. So, how do we discover ourselves, you may be asking. Discovering who you truly are at your core, comes by investing quality, soul-searching time with our creator, God Himself.
Later on in the book, Punchinello meets another Wemmick named Lucia who had no dim, dull dots or shiny, twinkling stars. When people tried to stick them on her, they would fall right off; the people’s opinions weren’t important to her. When he asked her why they didn’t stick she told him that it was because she was spending time with their creator, Eli. Because she was being affirmed, told her purpose and loved on by the one who made her, she knew her worth beyond a doubt. In knowing who she really was, it was impossible for things to attach to her that were not told to her by her maker!!! This beautiful image is one that God desires for us to walk in. That we would invest so much time with Him, that nothing but His words would be able to shape us, and mold us to fit the purpose and destiny He has written for our lives.
Pastor and author, Myles Munroe said, “Where purpose is unknown, abuse is inevitable”. We allow ourselves to be misused, abused, lied to and misshapen because we do not know who we really are. This rings loud to the importance of sitting still and allowing God, our Father, to love on us, and reveal to us who we are! It doesn’t just happen after one sit down with God either. At the end of the story, Punchinello went to see Eli. He sat still and listened to his creator tell him how wonderful and special he was. He listened to him, and learned what he thought of him. Eli told Punchinello to make sure he came back every day, so he could tell him how much he cared about him. After their talk, he was still covered in faded dots, but believing the things Eli said to him, one fell off.
Becoming who you’re really supposed to be takes time, but the more time you spend with God the more you see yourself the way He desires. The more time you spend with Him, the more He is able to smooth out the dents and scrapes of people’s false opinions of you. When He made you, He made you with a purpose, and a specific plan to draw people closer to Him through your life.
“Be still, and know that I am God;” Psalm 46:10a NKJV
We pass up opportunities to be still because we don’t understand the treasure and value in it. We don’t understand its great necessity. We tend to have microwave time segments with God, and expect four-course meal answers and results for our lives. I am still learning the importance of still, quality time with Christ, and it isn’t always easy to do, but it is the key component in discovering who I really am. We all need real, consecrated, private time with God, free from the distractions of this life to embark on the journey to self-discovery.
“The Lord will perfect that which concerns me; Your mercy, O Lord, endures forever; Do not forsake the works of Your hands.” Psalm 138:8 NKJV
Did you know that God is not angry with us for not knowing who we are? That He knows that this world has put dents and holes in us that have warped our image? I was once told by my mentor that God is an artist, and that an artist loves working on and perfecting their work. That they enjoy smoothing out the rough places, and bringing forth the image they desire to see. Did you know that God is an artist who loves to mold, smooth, and shape the vessel of your life? I have found that the more time I sit still listening for God’s voice, reading the Bible, worshipping Him, praying (communication, open dialogue with God), my life has changed in momentous ways for the better. This is how He continually opens opportunities to show me who He is, who I am and what I have been created for.
“For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things He planned for us long ago.” Ephesians 2:10 NLT
Spending time with God is some of the best time we can have. When we date someone, just being in their presence, breathing the same air they breathe, can be so comforting and invigorating. Why can’t we do this with God? Just sit listening to music about Him, learn about Him, learn what it means to be in His presence, learn what His plans are for us, learn how He wants us to live, the list goes on and on. There is so much more to us than we know, and if we were to be still and get to know the One who created us, and in turn get to know ourselves, everything would change. I haven’t perfectly mastered this yet, but I do know with each opportunity I take to invest in growing closer to God, something is imparted into my heart about who He is and how loved I am by Him. The more I experience His love, the more I know that He will never leave me up the creek without a paddle, even in my knucklehead and stubborn ways. His love makes me want to learn what it means to love Him wholeheartedly, and it makes me want to do what He desires me to do. He loves us, and desires us to surrender our hearts fully to Him, and as we do, carving out time for Him won’t be so hard. With each piece of our heart that gets turned over to Him, the more our lives will transform and become something greater than we could ever even imagine or think.
Prayer: Father, forgive us for putting life’s worries, standards, hopes, and people’s opinions above time with you. Help us to draw closer to You the way You desire.
In Jesus Name, Amen.
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