Uniquely You

“I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Marvelous are Your works, And that my soul knows very well.” Psalm 139:14 NKJ

I am a corporate trainer who has lead thousands of individuals through an exercise designed to reveal just how uniquely each person thinks.  Ironically, as the exercise commences the competition inevitably sets in and it is as though the small groups are in a race to prove how much they think alike!  It is almost as if uniqueness were a plague.

As I debrief, and we assess the experience, my heart secretly pleas for each one to understand and value the beauty in his/her own uniqueness.

We discuss the fact that from our very birth we have different experiences from one another.  We are borne by different mothers, into various cultures and socio-economic status which all shape our thinking.  Even siblings brought up in the same family, experience life from their own unique perspective.  Each child has a different place at the breakfast table, a unique birth order, different set of teachers, friends and so on.

Intellectually they understand the reasons for the uniqueness and seem to value it at the time.  However, as human nature goes, we quickly forget those ‘Ah Ha!’ moments without continual reinforcement.  And soon, we are back to either desiring the likeness of someone else or quick to temper with those that are NOT like us!

As I mentioned, I have conducted this exercise with slews of individuals a multitude of times, so why is it that I still found myself desiring the characteristics and qualities of others???   I wanted to be perfect in all things: covetous of others’ spiritual, physical, and intellectual gifts. Longing to have my house perfectly clean and organized like Lynn, for a great figure like Kristin’s, and for a sweet and godly spirit like Tammy.  All of this and still have time to run and write and serve AND take care of my family!

Thankfully, I have learned over time spent in God’s Word, He does not want me to be just like my friend, or sister, or Bible Study Leader.  He wants me to focus on the gifts He has given me uniquely and to be all that I can be in His perfect Will.  This has been one of the most freeing lessons the Lord has provided.

“For the LORD does not see as man sees; for man looks at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart.”  1 Samuel 16:7b NKJ

Dear One, are you longing to be like someone else?  The one who always seems to have her outward appearance together?  You know the one with manicured nails, perfect hair color and latest style, and she can wear anything and make it look great.  Or do you long to be as organized as your administrative friend?  She can pull off a party in a week flat, with all the bells and whistles that make the women feel so special and want to come back again and again.  Do you wish you could teach the Bible like your Bible Study leader?  Do you wish you could write or speak like Lysa TerKeurst?  While it doesn’t make it wrong for us to desire greater qualities, it is wrong for us to invest abundant resources, such as time, money, energy and passion, on anything without the Lord’s approval. These vain attempts will only cause us greater dissatisfaction and perhaps spiral us and our families into bankruptcy or deep depression.  This is because we will not receive joy or perfect peace in ‘chasing after the wind’.  It is in God’s will that we receive the fruits of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22-23).

A wonderful resource to discover and foster your uniqueness is The Gift in You by Dr. Caroline Leaf, a Christian Neuroscientist, who has created a profile to assess your thinking style(s).  This reading will expand your appreciation of your own design, as well your appreciation of those who are different.

God designed you to be Uniquely You! So look at your lovely qualities and capitalize upon them; look at your ugly qualities and surrender them to the Lord for his healing and maturing power.  In all things, lean not upon your own understanding, but in all your ways acknowledge Him and He will make your path straight, bringing out the full beauty of the perfectly, wonderfully made you!

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