Are you happy being who you are?
Do you have good self-esteem?
Does it really matter?
Are you comfortable in a room full of strangers or do you compare yourself to everyone; focusing on your flaws?
I think many of us struggle everyday with who we are. I’m not talking about how we wish we could lose 20 lbs or how I wish my hair hadn’t started falling out in my mid-twenties. Those are minor cosmetic issues. I’m talking about the big stuff that becomes chains shackling us to the walls in the dungeon of depression.
Our society is going through many trials in these difficult times. Many are losing homes and jobs, going bankrupt and feeling like failures.
Do you feel like a failure?
Do you feel not good enough?
Are you jealous of those who seem successful and have it all?
Do others have better jobs?
Are others more attractive?
Is their house, wedding ring, or motor home that much bigger and better than yours that you feel like a loser around them?
Do you ask why them and not me?
These thoughts of discontentment will eat away at our self-confidence and self-worth. But what is self-confidence and self-worth? Where does self-confidence and self-worth come from?
We need to start by taking our eyes away from the mirror for a change and look up. We need to look up toward our creator and savior Jesus Christ. We spend so much time looking at ourselves and comparing ourselves to other people that we don’t have time to look at God. Let’s get into the encouragement that can only be found in the Word. Here is what God says…
Then God said, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness.”
Each one of us is uniquely and specially made in the image of God, which means we each carry unique attributes of God. We are all different, but no less made in God’s image.
13 For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother's womb. 14 I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made.
God crafted our bodies, minds, and spirit in our mother’s womb in a unique and special way. We are wonderfully made in an awe-inspiring and fearful way. We are no accident. We are different, but each one of us is formed by the hands of the living God, who is infinitely holy, perfect, and good.
Isaiah 43:1-2 & 7
But now thus says the Lord, he who created you, O Jacob, he who formed you, O Israel: “Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name, you are mine… 7 everyone who is called by my name, whom I created for my glory, whom I formed and made.”
God is very serious about these facts: He made us in His own image. He uniquely formed us from the inside out in our mother’s womb. He made us for His glory – for His purposes. Based on these scriptures (many others tell the same story), we should be able to deduce that we are not a freak occurrence of nature or and accident. We were not the results of strange biological evolutions or random chemical combinations. Each and every one of us was uniquely planned, creatively designed, precision engineered, and delivered with a purpose. God made us the way we are for a reason…for His glory. God made us just as we are for His purpose and His glory alone. There is nothing more valuable or perfect in the universe than God’s delight, purpose, and glory.
I hope you find comfort and confidence in this. We can not compare ourselves to others when we know we are unique for God’s purpose. We should instead search out where God has gifted us and apply our lives fully to those gifts and let God do the rest.
But why has he made us this way or that way?
But, if God makes us in His image, why is everyone else more interesting, more desirable, more rich, more important, more everything?
Is it not enough that you are the image of God?
My current favorite passages of scripture finish the story. These verses add power to our created nature and they describe the scope and depth of the power of the God who created us.
And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.
In him we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to the purpose of him who works all things according to the counsel of his will…
These two phenomenal verses show that God’s will and purpose rules our existence. All things work for good – good in God’s eyes, not our own – and He works all things according to his predestined purpose. We and our lives are chosen and planned before time began in order to fulfill God’s ultimate design, purpose, and pleasure. This is good news. There are no mistakes and no failures…ever. Everyone has a purpose.
Not only do all things work for good, but all things are being maintained and held together by Jesus Christ. Right now, Christ is holding the stars in place in the sky, choosing the exact amount, size and speed of the rain drops falling in another part of the world while He is orchestrating the events of your life. I’d even argue that He is beating your heart to keep you alive.
…and he [Jesus] upholds the universe by the word of his power…
And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together.
The best part is that it is all good. It was all planned to be this way. You were planned to be this way. Have hope and have courage to serve your purpose to God’s glory. Find your purpose and work it out.
If, however, you are not encouraged and you still want to complain to the all knowing living God, I would caution you. We must be careful in complaining to the creator. Gratefulness and thankfulness should rule our hearts. We in today’s society have lost the healthy respect for God. We need to know our rightful place in the universe. This verse helps keep perspective:
20 But who are you, O man, to answer back to God? Will what is molded say to its molder, “Why have you made me like this?”
Do we have higher standards than God? Or should we find peaceful contentment in how we were molded? Should we change our self-consumed focus from what we don’t have to God, His purpose, His glory, and His genius? I’d say so.