Have you ever felt unwanted? Unloved? Have you ever wished to be thinner? Prettier? Fairer? Wittier? More intelligent?
There are times when it seems that the world is conspiring to make you feel “less than” – as though you don’t measure up. Life can hurt your feelings. It can rob you of every shred of self-confidence that you have.
If we’re not careful, we’ll get so used to wishing we were someone else that we spend our whole lives trying to be something that we were not created to be. You can easily get to a place where you don’t have a clue about who God created you to be because you never took the time to find out.
Is that you my friend? Are you wearing yourself out trying to fit into a mold that was designed in the minds of men?
Most Christians are familiar with the concept of the armor of God that is expressed in Ephesians 6:10-18. We know that if we are to withstand the attacks of the enemy, we have to use the tools God gave us. But let’s zero in on verse 17:
And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God; (NKJV)
When we read that verse in our English Bibles we see “sword of the Spirit” and many of us envision a long sword that is common in the swordfights we see on our televisions. But that’s not the context of the word used in the Greek.
The original word is máchaira, (pronounced makh’-ahee-rah) which could also mean a knife. It was commonly used in the Bible to represent a large knife typically used for killing animals or cutting up flesh. Alternately, it represented a short sword that was distinctive from a large one.
This is where history comes into play. The Romans typically used a sword called the Hispaniensis. This was basically a short sword designed to be wielded with one hand. Now I know you’re probably wondering, why is Ami telling us all this useless information? I have a point, I promise.
The Roman army distinguished itself at a time when soldiers usually used long swords and javelins to fight their enemies. Their method of fighting required some amount of distance from their enemies in order for their weapons to be effective. The Romans, on the other hand, excelled at hand-to-hand combat in close quarters. Their weapons were designed to be effective the closer they were to their enemies.
The fact that Paul chose this particular word to represent the Word of God suggests that it is something that should be readily available to us and that we’re willing to use in close combat.
The second thing of note was that the word translated as “word” was the Greek rhēma, (pronounced hray’-mah) meaning any utterance or saying. This is separate from logos which is the Greek used when talking about the Word of God.
Are you denying parts of your personality as you strive desperately to earn the approval of the people around you?
I have one word for you: stop. Just, stop.
You are not a mistake or the result of failed contraceptive measures … there was deliberation in your birth. God created you. You are fearfully and wonderfully made and that’s a reason to be grateful. Even if no one on earth wants you – God does. You have been specially chosen by him.
Which person on earth is capable of creating life? Aren’t you grateful that you were created specifically to be here?
Make a list of all the things that are unique about you.
What items on your list are the results of habits resulting from the influences of the world? What items form part of your unique identity? Re-write your list in two columns: those that can be changed and those that cannot.
Jehovah, thank you for creating me and protecting me in my mother’s womb. I am grateful that you chose to make me and place me in these unique situations here on earth. Thank you for my life. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
Further reading: Psalm 139:13-18
Write a letter to God expressing your response to these verses.
This was an excerpt from How to Find Your Gratitude Attitude which is now available on Amazon.
Learning how to be grateful is something that we all struggle with. It’s something that I struggle with. That’s why when God put the words for How to Find Your Gratitude Attitude in my spirit, I resisted. How could God expect me to write about the very thing that I’m still struggling with?
As I committed to write the words for the 21-day devotional, they flowed out of me, because that’s how God works. He wants to use us for His glory. He wants to show us how our weaknesses become strengths when we surrender them to Him.
How to Find Your Gratitude Attitude is now available on Amazon. Order your copy today.