Jesus came to earth as a human being just like you and me (we seem to have a hard time believing that). He had a special purpose to fulfill, just like you and me (we can’t seem to believe that either).
God wanted him to show us by his life, death, and resurrection, how deeply and passionately we are loved; how much he longs to bless us; how we should care for and be blessings to others (those truths also seem to have been lost to us on our often broken journey).
Jesus fulfilled his purpose even though he knew he was making a lot of “important” people angry. So angry they would kill him. I’m pretty sure no one wants to kill us for striving to be all God created us to be (though that is not the case for many Christians in other countries). So, we have to come up with a different excuse – and we do: I’m not smart enough, I’m busy, I don’t think that applies to me. I need to straighten up my messy life and my underwear drawer first…wha-wha-wha…
Daily, Jesus had to decide if he would keep doing what he came here to do. And just before they came to take him away, scripture tells us that he was in agony praying that God would just make it go away (Luke 22:39-46). After all, the human side of him did not want to suffer. But, in the end, he accepted whatever God’s will was. Just think about how that turned out!
We are now in Holy Week – when we remember Jesus’ suffering, death and his glorious resurrection on Easter Sunday – which we celebrate because we are reminded of how much God loves us! This is the moment in time when the disciples came out of hiding; when their fears and doubts fell away, and they tripped all over each other to get busy preaching and teaching and glorifying God. Skipping happily to their own deaths (except for John).
Jesus could have made a different choice. He could have said “no” to God. The disciples could have stayed in hiding. What about you?
God tells you in scripture that he made you and had special plans for you before you were even born. He gave everyone gifts and talents and at the same time made each person unique and special. (Jeremiah 29:11)
Sure, you may doubt yourself. You may not want to risk using gifts that you think others will make fun of or criticize. But, if you trust that God gave you those gifts, then you must believe that he has already given you everything you need to use them. Not doing that would be sort of like gifting you with a new car and not giving you the keys wouldn’t it?
So…what do you say? There is no better time than this moment to reflect prayerfully on what your life’s purpose is, if you haven’t already. Sit quietly with God and just ask him to help you consider:
- How are you unique?
- Do you know what your gifts are? Let’s think about that…
- Who do you admire and why? (Often what we admire in others is what we would like to develop in ourselves).
- Do you like helping others?
- Do you consider yourself a leader?
- What makes you happy – sad? What are you passionate about? (These can be thoughts that can lead to discovery of gifts)
- Has someone else told you that you are good at something?
God is waiting for each of us to step out of our comfort zone; to come out of hiding, and serve this broken world.
During this Holy Week, perhaps for the first time, deeply contemplate Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection in light of your own life; your own purpose. Is this your resurrection moment? Is it time for your “yes”?
2 Corinthians 5:17 proclaims that you are a new creation in Christ each new day, “This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun!”
Also, and very importantly, when you’re considering your gifts and how you are called to use them try not to get all full of yourself in the process – okay? It would be easy to do, but, dear heart, this isn’t about you!
Always keep Jesus’ example in the forefront of all you do:
Why did God send Jesus here?
It wasn’t to flex His muscles – although he could have. He could have taken his anger out on our sinfulness and rejection and wiped us all out. He did it before you know…
No, it was to show us in the most powerful way he could how deep his love is for us, and in particular, those who suffer.
It wasn’t to gather groupies who would idolize him, serve him, and cater to his every whim – although, that would have been easier. All he had to do was eliminate free-will. But our free-will to love him – or not – was too important to him. Even though that very will nailed his Son to the cross.
No, it was to model meekness, humility, and service to those most in need.
It wasn’t to puff out his chest and boast of his great might – although he had plenty to boast about. No one, no matter what pedestal we set them on, or place of honor we bestow on them – ourselves included – no one should brag or exult themselves (though we often try).
No, his extravagant love was manifested through his beloved Son, not puffed up and boastful, but rejected and slumped over on a cross.
Now, go on – what are you waiting for? Sure, God knows, you’re a hot mess – so what?