Note to reader: The following is the result of further study, research and reflection after reading a portion of The Resolution for Women by Priscilla Shirer, a book written upon the influence of the movie Courageous, which hit theaters nation-wide in September/October of 2011.
But you are not like that, for you are a chosen people. You are royal priests, a holy nation, God’s very own possession. As a result, you can show others the goodness of God, for He called you out of darkness and into His marvelous light: “Once you had no identity as a people; now you are God’s people. Once you received no mercy; now you have received God’s mercy.” 1 Peter 2:9-10
In going through this journey to make a resolution in my life, I’ve come to realize this week that I need to value myself and celebrate those around me and the route to that point will not be an easy one.
I’ve been in the world nearly twenty-seven years and, while I am a follower of Christ, life has not been a piece of cake. I’ve been tossed about by the waves of life and have even been dunked a few times. I’ve even bought into a few of the lies; where the world promises to fulfill this need and never ever follows through with that promise.
Pop culture constantly throws these promises in our face. In high school, I was intrigued by the covers of different magazines as well as following my so called group of friends. I wore what I thought was appropriate for a girl my age, according to the latest fashion ads. I spoke and treated people the way my friends did, even though I knew that it wasn’t right. I, a girl who only wanted to fit in, continuously tried to mold myself to what our society wanted. Today, I’m a health nut and read health magazines and articles on a daily basis. Headlines and magazine covers promise results in as little as a week or you can drop two sizes by Christmas. I find myself scoffing at the idea. Things is, God broke the mold when He made me and He breaks that same mold with all of us.
We tend to focus on all the little minute details, or even choose one to center everything else around rather than looking at the bigger picture. When decorating a room, we don’t pick out the tri-colored candle that we love to be the focal point. We take into the consideration the palette of the room, the furniture, rugs or wall art; the bigger things. We don’t center it around something so small and trivial. Decorating would be difficult if we did.
Too bad we don’t always take that same perspective with our lives. I myself, as mentioned before, have based my self-worth on lesser things – like the way I look, the group I best fit into, or the way I measure up to the world’s standards – to determine the type of woman I should be. I’ve bought that candle and made it the focal point of my life, mapping out everything else around it. I’m sure you’ve picked up false information from the world and applied it to your life, just as I have.
We need to take a step back, starting now, today, and take a good look at ourselves. We need to make the bigger, more definitive decisions first. What are you going to do with God’s dwelling place before figuring out where to hang the accessories?
Once we’ve settled the larger issues – our God-given worth – everything else will fall into place. Shirer states that only then will we have the “freedom to build out lives on what really matters, discarding all the things that don’t.”
Jeremiah 1:5 reads I knew you before I formed you in your mother’s womb. Before you were born, I set you apart and appointed you as My prophet to the nations.
He chose you.
He set you apart.
He appointed you.
God chose you – We are all part of a divinely designed, carefully calculated, and eternally significant plan. His decision in choosing you was not half-hearted or quick. Shirer reminds us that it was a “deliberate, volitional act of God Himself made with thoughtful consideration and wisdom.” His choice was based on a deep, intimate knowledge of who you are. Know that there is a reason for why He has you living this life, now in this area of the city/country and that you were chosen for such time as this. You did not choose Me; I chose you. (John 15:16)
God set you apart. We are unique, holy vessels of God and He has set us aside for specific times when the uniqueness we each offer can fully be used and valued. You life touches the lives of many and, at times, only your words and actions will be understand, heard, and accepted by some at a time when they need it most. Only you can deliver that message. They won’t hear it from anyone else. We were each created by God to “do our part…if we fail to do it because we don’t think its valuable enough, great loss will be suffered. Someone, somewhere, needs you – in all of your uniqueness –to step up to the plate of your calling” (pg. 58).
God has appointed you. Being chosen and set apart is quite an honor and it comes with great responsibility. And because you have been chosen and set apart, God appointed us to the places and positions we now hold for His divine design. Every kind of season and weather you individually experience has been divinely designed to surround you with only the conditions that will allow your unique gifts and abilities to reach their maximum potential. You will be able to grow, yield and produce to your utmost extent. Shirer also points out the seeds God has given you will produce a crop that is yours to grow; no one else will shoulder your responsibility.
You are the only you the world has. Cherish it.