When my first son was born, the hospital offered to post a picture of him on their website, these were the days before social media. Along with his picture and details of his weight and height, I could add a phrase. I had them put “God was just showing off when he made me.” I thought it was cute.
On Christmas, a couple months later, I opened a gift from my dad. It was a glass bottle that was engraved with his name and status at birth. I turned it over and read the phrase, “God was just off when he made me.” Wait… What? I had to take a closer look. The word “showing” made all the difference. It went from a compliment to a slam in the matter of one word. I quickly realized that it was an innocent mistake by the engraver and we keep it around as a way to tease my son.
But in all seriousness, how many of us live by that second phrase? We live our entire lives feeling like God must have been off the day he made me. Why did he give me this flaw? Why didn’t he give me that gift?
Genesis 1:31 God saw all that he had made and it was very good.
Do you realize that this verse comes after he created humans?
A large percentage of my Splankna clients are teenagers. Across the board the thing I say the most is, “God made you perfectly you!”
One time during a retreat we did a humorous skit that diagnosed the main character with comparative-worthitis. It was such a great visual of how much we let our worth be found in how we compare to each other.
Our worth and “rightness” is not determined in how we compare to one another. It is in how well we match up to who God created us to be.
Let’s think about Simon Peter for a moment. He was very compulsive. He often talked and acted without thinking. He was the disciple who drew his sword against the soldier and cut off his ear. Can you imagine how much the other disciples wanted to change him? “Peter, think before you speak?” “Peter, why are you so uncontrollable?”
In reality God created Peter like that. When he added up the ingredients to design Peter, he must have thought to himself, he needs an extra measure of zeal. God had designed Peter this way for his calling in this world; he needed every ingredient God gave him when He knit him together in his mother’s womb. (Psalm 139:13) God had no desire to change how Peter was designed. When God transforms us into his likeness, he does that with all the ingredients. (2 Corinthians 3:18) God looked at Peter and said “very good.
”There is absolutely nothing wrong with the way we were made. God does not make junk. God does not make mistakes. You are perfectly you!
The problem comes in how we use our gifts and ingredients. Peter needed to learn, grow, and mature to be who God created him to be. He didn’t need to stop being spirited and energetic. He needed to use it for the purpose God created it.
Many years ago, I was asked to give a testimony on victory over sin. I prayed long and hard on what God wanted me to share. He woke me up in the middle of the night and showed me some really cool things. Things I didn’t even realize about myself. He showed me the victory I had over the sin that was done to me when I was an innocent child. One major lesson was that God created me stubborn, strong-willed and a little like Peter. I spoke my mind with no regard for my own safety. I would run into an abusive situation and stand up for the one who couldn’t stand up, no matter the consequence. He showed me that being stubborn and strong-willed was not a flaw or mistake in my character. They are ingredients he gave me to survive my childhood and to become a fierce voice of reason when needed.
As I grew to know him and learned to be led by the Spirit of God, I began to realize some essential truths. All I needed to do was surrender all of those ingredients to his perfect will, see them as gifts, use them for his purposes, do nothing out of selfish ambition. Over the years I’ve had the privilege of being used by God on behalf of his children, much like Peter.
You see, this isn’t unique to Peter. This isn’t unique to the leaders in the church. This is true of everyone. Every person God created was created with a purpose and a calling. God gave each of us the ingredients in our design to accomplish His plans. Of course with man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible. (Matt 19:26)
I implore you to cure yourself of comparative-worthitis. Embrace your design. See who God created you to be and stop seeing yourself as wrong. Tell yourself the truth. God designed you according to his perfect will. When he created you he said, “All I have created is very good.” Embrace your uniqueness. Embrace your beautiful design, because your Father in Heaven looks down in love and awe of you.