Tuesday, May 20, 2014

How to Be Yourself, Not Someone Else

Today's discussion is on not asking God why He made us the way He did. God is all seeing, all knowing, and He has his reasons to do what He does. We don't have the knowledge or wisdom that He has nor the foresight to know that He made each of us for a specific purpose. I know that my hardships and defects make me a stronger person and makes those who see those and how I still have a relationship with God, brings them closer to Him as well. At first, yes I questioned it but then I realised its not for me to question, its part of me and either I can get over it and accept it or I can just quit. As you can see I didn't just quit, I carry on and I thank God for every day He gives me. Asking "How can you use me today Lord? For I am Your humble servant. Let Your light be shown through me to those around me in your name."

“But who are you, my friend, to talk back to God? A clay pot does not ask the man who made it, ‘Why did you make me like this?’” (Romans 9:20 TEV)

Since God knows what’s best for us, we should gratefully accept the way he has fashioned us. The Bible says, “But who are you, my friend, to talk back to God? A clay pot does not ask the man who made it, ‘Why did you make me like this?’” (Romans 9:20 TEV)

Your shape was sovereignly determined by God for his purpose, so you shouldn’t resent it or reject it. Instead of trying to reshape yourself to be like someone else, you should celebrate the shape God has given only to you. “Christ has given each of us special abilities — whatever he wants us to have out of his rich storehouse of gifts” (Ephesians 4:7 LB).

Part of accepting your shape is recognizing your limitations. Nobody is good at everything, and no one is called to be everything. We all have defined roles. Paul understood that his calling was not to accomplish everything or please everyone but to focus only on the particular ministry God had shaped him for (Galatians 2:7-8). He said, “We will boast only about what has happened within the boundaries of the world God has given us, which includes our working with you” (2 Corinthians 10:13 NLT).

The word “boundaries” refers to the fact that God assigns each of us a field or sphere of service. Your shape determines your specialty. When we try to overextend our ministry reach beyond what God shaped us for, we experience stress. Just as each runner in a race is given a different lane to run in, we must individually “run with patience the particular race that God has set before us” (Hebrews 12:1 LB).

Don’t be envious of the runner in the lane next to you; just focus on finishing your race. God wants you to enjoy using the shape he has given you. The Bible says, “Pay careful attention to your own work, for then you will get the satisfaction of a job well done, and you won’t need to compare yourself to anyone else” (Galatians 6:4 NLT).

Satan will try to steal the joy of service from you in a couple of ways: by tempting you to compare your ministry with others, and by tempting you to conform your ministry to the expectations of others. Both are deadly traps that will distract you from serving in the ways God intended. Whenever you lose your joy in ministry, start by considering if either one of these temptations is the cause.

13 We, however, will not boast beyond proper limits, but will confine our boasting to the sphere of service God himself has assigned to us, a sphere that also includes you.  - 2Corinthians 10:13 (NIV)

1 Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us,  - Hebrews 12:1 (NIV)

4 Each one should test their own actions. Then they can take pride in themselves alone, without comparing themselves to someone else,  - Galatians 6:4 (NIV)

20 But who are you, a human being, to talk back to God? “Shall what is formed say to the one who formed it, ‘Why did you make me like this?’”  - Romans 9:20 (NIV)

7 But to each one of us grace has been given as Christ apportioned it.  - Ephesians 4:7 (NIV)

7 On the contrary, they recognized that I had been entrusted with the task of preaching the gospel to the uncircumcised, just as Peter had been to the circumcised. 8 For God, who was at work in Peter as an apostle to the circumcised, was also at work in me as an apostle to the Gentiles. - Galatians 2:7-8 (NIV)

This devotional © 2014 by Rick Warren. All rights reserved. Used by permission.