We are all different. Unique. There is no one like you. Nobody has the same giftings, abilities, appearance, and passions as you.
We are like parts of the body, all with different functions but working together to function well and live out our lives the way God wants us to.
1 Corinthians 12 14-27
For the body does not consist of one member but of many. If the foot should say, “Because I am not a hand, I do not belong to the body,” that would not make it any less a part of the body. And if the ear should say, “Because I am not an eye, I do not belong to the body,” that would not make it any less a part of the body. If the whole body were an eye, where would be the sense of hearing? If the whole body were an ear, where would be the sense of smell? But as it is, God arranged the members in the body, each one of them, as he chose. If all were a single member, where would the body be? As it is, there are many parts, yet one body. The eye cannot say to the hand, “I have no need of you,” nor again the head to the feet, “I have no need of you.” On the contrary, the parts of the body that seem to be weaker are indispensable, and on those parts of the body that we think less honorable we bestow the greater honor, and our unpresentable parts are treated with greater modesty, which our more presentable parts do not require. But God has so composed the body, giving greater honor to the part that lacked it, that there may be no division in the body, but that the members may have the same care for one another. If one member suffers, all suffer together; if one member is honored, all rejoice together. Now you are the body of Christ and individually members of it.
Early on in my Christian walk I was so worried about my heart being changed, and turning away from sinful behaviour. Trying to be the woman I thought God wanted me to be. Taking verses about women at face value about meekness, submissiveness, or remaining quiet. I felt like I constantly fell short of the quiet, kind, submissive, “men first” woman that God wanted me to be. I was too forward, too independent, too loud, too abrasive.
And I think when we do what I did, and not dive deep into the context of these verses and what God says about women, it is easy to think the Bible is a he over she book. That women are meant to be seen and not heard. When in fact that is not the case at all.
God creates the world and everything in it and “He saw that it was good.” It was very interesting to me that the first time God says “and it is not good” was when he created man. He says in Genesis 2:18 – It is not good that man should be alone; I will make him a helper fit for him.
And don’t get down on the word helper and think that God is elevating man over woman here. The Hebrew word “EZER” is better translated as “rendering aid” or “neccessary ally” and God himself is referred to as Israel’s helper in Hosea 13:9.
He destroys you, O Israel, for you are against me, against your helper
So ladies, this does not mean we were put on this earth simply to assist men, to sit quietly on the sidelines and take care of babies and make sure our husbands needs are met. But we were designed to be a complete picture of humans, created in God’s image.
I look at many women in my life and I see soft, gentle, humble, quiet spirits and although I believe through sanctification and testing God will develop my character and strengthen some of those qualities in me, I have also realized he gave me a strength, wit, boldness, say it like it is kind of attitude for a reason.
He has called me to be an advocate for orphaned and vulnerable children. And I believe that job takes strength, boldness and a willingness to speak up for kids when so many turn their back and say not my kid, not my problem. I am not naturally hospitable or thoughtful like so many of my friends. That takes me being intentional. But, I am naturally fiery and passionate and tenacious.
I may not be the first mom to drop off a meal when a family is need after a surgery or death in the family. But I am the first mom who will make room in my home for a kid who needs it and battle the broken foster care system to advocate for their best interests. I am willing to put myself through grief over and over and love and let go because I know God will give me the strength to do so.
So, I want this to be an encouragement to you that God made you the way you are for a reason. When you find your purpose and calling (or purposes and callings) you will better understand why you are the way you are.
You have something to offer this world that no one else has. So many of our problems, or shortcomings, come because we are so busy trying to be like someone else that we don’t put any effort into being ourselves and using our individual character traits to glorify God.
Yes we are all called to develop our fruits of the spirit and turn from works of the flesh but let us not mistake our boldness, loudness, outspoken ways as sinful behaviours. We need to channel them into thoughts and actions that glorify God.
Ephesians 5:22-23 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.
So my kindness does not naturally manifest in a quiet, soft spoken, cook a meal for a friend, write thank you notes for everything kind of way. My kindness manifests in unknown children having a home in my home. It manifests in being there for their parents who are broken and really struggling. So they have someone in their corner when so much of the world just shuts them out or looks down on them.
My love doesn’t naturally manifest in a invite fellow believers over for dinner and fellowship, it manifests in actions against the great injustices that God has broken my heart for.
I don’t know who needs to be reading this right now but I spent so many years trying to change, to be more like the quiet, meek, humble Godly women in my life, and who I thought I was supposed to be that I missed out on using my fiery, passionate, bold, outspoken heart for His good and glory.
Stop trying to change your personality and instead use your personality and giftings in the way He wants you to use them. Remember some of us are feet who support and move the body forward, some of us are ears that do more listening, some of us are mouths that speak out against injustice, some of us are brains that teach and lead and shepherd.
Own who God made you to be. Only ditch the stuff that won’t bring him glory like laziness or slandering, gossip or drunkenness (God didn’t put you on this earth to party all the time.)
If you are loud and outspoken, be a loud mouth for God. If you are quiet and introverted, learn everything you can and teach others about His goodness.
You are unique. You are gifted in different ways than everyone else. Use those gifts. Don’t shrink or hide them. God knows everything about you already.
O Lord, you have searched me and known me! You know when I sit down and when I rise up; you discern my thoughts from afar. You search out my path and my lying down and are acquainted with all my ways. Even before a word is on my tongue, behold, O Lord, you know it altogether. You hem me in, behind and before, and lay your hand upon me. Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is high; I cannot attain it.
We are called to love God with all OUR hearts, mind, soul and strength and to work hard in OUR own way. We are not to focus on the success of others and strive to be that person. Everyone is given their own races to run.
Galations 6:4 But let each one test his own work, and then his reason to boast will be in himself alone and not in his neighbor.
Thanks to social media, today more than ever, we fall prey to the comparison trap and that is not the way God wants us to live our lives. Wake up each day and ask God to help you. Ask Him to show you the gifts and talents within yourself, lead you to ways you can serve and glorify Him using YOUR unique gifts and personality.
We can’t honor God running someone else’s race. We can’t honor God trying to fit into some else’s personality. We are leaving so much said unsaid and undone when we don’t focus on what He has put before us. So this is your reminder to own who God made YOU to be.