When I was growing up, I was almost always the shortest and the smallest in my class, I was typically slower than all the kids because they were taller than me, I didn’t get picked first, or second, or anywhere near the top percentile for a good variety of activities and games on the playground. I tried hard to be in the “in-crowd”, to be “popular” by being the best I could at sports. I didn’t do too well though. Partly because of my athletic abilities compared to my peers, partly because I was also quickly bored by playing sports as well. Apparently that was something I never outgrew for a majority of sports. The point of this story isn’t the sports I have the attention span to play and not to play, or being the best or the worst, the point is the attitudes I had behind all of it. Despite the fact that through all of this I was
always striving to be somebody I was not. I wasn’t accepting who I was the way Jesus accepts us for who we are. I was willing to let other people’s opinions of who I was define my mind, my actions and my lifestyle.
“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)
I needed to look at myself the way Jesus looked at me: a masterpiece. He made me new when I was just four years old and let me just tell you, I have been a piece of work. Actually, I still am a piece of work. If I were not constantly being worked on, I wouldn’t need Jesus. I need Jesus. We all need Jesus. None of us are perfect, I have my flaws, I have my things that need to be worked on and so does everybody else in the world. But that’s the beauty of Christ. He loves us no matter what.
“But God showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners.” (Romans 5:8 NLT)
I love that God loves us that much. It’s amazing. He’s amazing. In my alone time with Jesus lately, I’ve been learning a lot about love. Both His love for us and how we are to love and treat others.
Now back to the beginning.
“Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.” (Romans 12:2 NLT).
I wish I let this verse impact my life at a young age as I let it impact me today.
But now, it’s today. Here’s what Jesus is doing in me today, what I could be doing versus what I am doing. I could be going to a college paying a lot of money away from God’s plan, partying and getting wasted thinking I’m having a good time and doing something awesome. I could have dated every girl that walked in front of me, not care about her moral standards and do what the rest of the world says I need to do. I could do drugs and think nothing of it. I could be pursuing the wrong things that don’t shape my character to be the man of God I need to be. Instead, I’m going to a private Christian college pursing Children’s Ministry. I want to see young people feel, experience and know the love and power that Jesus Christ has for each one of them. I’m spending my evenings building friendships and relationships that will last a lifetime pushing both parties closer to Jesus in the long run. I choose to treat women with respect and with value. I read my Bible and pray. I have a long way to go, but I’m sure glad that Jesus still chooses to use me for His good.