I was thinking that there are many things I cannot do – but, there are some things I can do.
Then: Of those, there are things which I do not do well, but there are some which I do do well.
Therefore I am exactly as it pleases The Lord.
All of the threads that have come down the generational stream contributing to the tapestry which makes up my particular DNA and person-hood play a part in defining my identity and the way I am able to give a unique expression of the glory of God. The threads are many: I pictured the Romany milking a goat, providing for his family’s needs; a seaman facing storms on open water; a stolid Dutchman in meetings attending to village matters.
In all this there is design, purpose. The scripture about the pot confronting the potter comes to mind. Accusing the potter of insufficiency is common to all of us. Why do we do this? Rather than accepting and rejoicing that our gifts are adequate in God’s eyes, we grouse and complain, in effect accusing the Designer of All of some shortcoming. We suggest to Him that He could do better by us, giving us the gift that someone else has. In this state of dissatisfaction we then strive to become something we are not and were never intended to be.
A caveat here: As a Christian I am in process to become the very best I can be. “Yet, to all who received HIm, for those who believe in His name He gives the power (right) to become children of God. “ John 1:12 What a promise, what a hope! In that process we are being conformed to the image of Jesus which is a present and continuing experience. The standard then is not other people’s gifts and talents which we lack, but the standard of Jesus Christ. Excellence should be the norm for every Christ-indwelt believer. But that excellence is to the standard God has chosen for each person.
So I will not be a graceful dancer interpreting story through body movement. I will not be a modern day Rembrandt bringing ideas and concepts to light with paint and canvas. I will not build majestic buildings, invent better surgical procedures, create glorious symphonies. But what I do, I do well to the honor and glory of God alone. Humble as it may be, and unnoticed by the world, if I exhibit excellence in what I do, it is pleasing to God who requires nothing more from me. It is His standard which matters.
Perhaps our personal dissatisfaction is rooted in insecurity about our own value or worth. The striving to become what we were never intended to be is a clear indicator that we have not grasped fully our true identity as cherished creations of The Lord of the universe. Coming to that understanding brings us (you) to a place of rest where striving ceases.
Hebrews 4:9 - 11 There remains, then, a Sabbath-rest for the people of God;
for anyone who enters God’s rest also rests from their works, just as God did from his.
Let us, therefore, make every effort to enter that rest.
John Paul Jackson, considered by many to be an elder or senior voice among the prophetic community, recently shared his testimony of being caught up to the throne room of heaven. There before the Ancient of Days, the all Powerful One, he was instantly aware that God was totally righteous, and that he, John Paul, was not. It was only the covering of Christ which kept him from being totally annihilated before that source of power. He reports that a continual stream of light and power came out of the center – which we might call the heart or center – and with each burst the surrounding creatures and angels would erupt into cries of wonder “Holy!” “Holy” “Holy!!” The noise was deafening, between the continual erupting bursts and the responses of those around the throne. Translated into our present day and world what they were saying was “Wow!” “Wow.” “Wow!!” These were expressions of wonder at His continual revealing of new facets of Himself. They never became jaded, because the revelations were each more awesome than the other. I was reminded of the Scripture which declares that He holds up the world with His power. “The Son is the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of his being, sustaining all things by his powerful word.” Hebrews 1:3
Each eruption was another creative act. Each one elicited a “Wow!” Each was something new and truly awesome in the original meaning of that word. It is not too far a stretch to consider that with the creation of each individual – whom the Bible declares is dearly loved and highly valued – the very angels of heaven are exclaiming “Wow!” We are, all of us, made in the image of God. That image is so inexhaustible that even millions upon millions of persons display something distinctive to the glory of God. As no two snowflakes are alike, and no two magnified grains of sand are alike, so is it with His beloved crown of creation: mankind. You are so unique that the angels are “wowing” over you.
The problem is, not knowing or believing that fact causes many of His dearly loved creations to slide into a downward spiral of darkness, rebellion, and woe. The life that rejects the very Creator from which it came is soon a life of strife, a chain of pain. The spouse batterer, the drunk face down in the gutter, the trafficker in pornography have fallen far from revealing the glory of God. The “Wow” has become “Woe.”
It seems to me, therefore, that the first order of business for the church is believing the truth of our identity, teaching it, and best of all, modeling it. Learning our identity is the way into His rest. Anyone who grasps the significance of who he is, becomes changed, radically so. Moving from “woe” to “wow” he displays a clear demonstration of the gospel’s power.