Matthew 5:5 (the message)
You’re blessed when you’re content with just who you are-no more, no less. That’s the moment you find yourselves proud owners of everything that can’t be bought.
We are in transition with our Internet service so lately I have been blogging on my phone.
On my phone, people!
Smile…a friend and I were talking the other day about how you know your passion when you’d do it for free. Or on your phone. I do okay with the text/typing, it’s the editing at the end when I’m determined to pass this little test!!
Random and nothing to do with my post today. But I’m a girl and that’s allowed.
So my little fair-skinned, mini-van driving mama self loves some Lecrae. He’s like Christian Hip Hop, I guess. I first discovered him at an event where he performed. I had to focus to keep up with the lyrics (I’m all about lyrics!) but I was taken with that first song I heard, Don’t Wanna Waste My Life.
Anyhow, I have a few of his songs on a playlist and sometimes my girls and I pump it up. The other morning we had it on during breakfast and Rivers kinda gawked at my attempt to sing along. (No amount of gawking from my children will ever stop me.). So a few of the words from one song, called Identity, go like this:
I’m not the shoes I wear
I’m not the clothes I buy
I’m not the house I live in
I’m not the car I drive
No, I’m not the job I work
You can’t define my worth
My identity is found in Christ
Identity is found in the one we trust
Any other identity will self destruct
My favorite line is when Lecrae declares “you can’t define my worth.” It rings loud and true in my soul. But over the past few days as I linger on these first verses of Matthew five, I’m reminded of something powerful. While I might be rockin’ out with Lecrae that stuff and others can’t define my worth, I need to understand that I can’t even define my worth. I’m not really meant to live life with an ever-ready list of my personal pros and cons.
He means for me to be content with just who I am.
I know. I know what some of you may be thinking. Because when I read that verse my initial reaction is the same…I could never give myself permission to (hold on it hurts) like myself. Well, hear this: God is giving permission .
I get it, I’m all about working on myself. My flaws often carry far more weight in my life than my strengths. Here’s what got me about verse five this week… Jesus is telling those hillside climbers they are blessed–blessed!–when they learn to be content with just who they are, no more and no less.
Put on the brakes and lets park here. (Smile, it’s Friday peeps!)
No more and no less He says.
This blessed contentment comes when I unapologetically refuse to be less than He made me and secure enough to not strive to be more.
We so often diminish ourselves. Maybe we confuse recognizing the wonder in how He made us with pride. Sometimes we live less than He means for us to be to satisfy others or even fear. Fear of rejection or judgement if we just go ahead and shine.I have a sneaky suspicion that many of us spend so much effort trying to be different that we still end up being less of what He means for us to be.
It’s not about pride or being puffed up. Less and more are relevant only in regards to who He means for us to be…His unique and fabulous plan for each of us.
We can never really be content with our life if we are not content with who we are.
Does this contentment mean we ignore sin or areas of our lives God wants to work in? No, not at all. I really believe contentment hinges on one thing. One amazing thing.
In His grace He gives us strengths, abilities, giftings and passions. We cannot produce them, we can only recognize and cultivate them. We shouldn’t take credit. But we shouldn’t diminish them and live less. Creator wants to fill and flow through our unique personalities so He can touch others.
If we live striving to be more all the while living discontent and less, it costs others, as well.
Instead of striving to be more than He designed us to be, I believe He asks us to rest in His grace, His un-earned favor. I know He likes to see His Son reproduced in our lives…I know being a Jesus follower means letting God sand the rough edges. But even then, it’s a response to grace.
So, this morning as my runny-nose Leighton takes an early nap I’m soaking in this freedom.
Freedom to be me. No more. No less.
Freedom, God-given permission, to like myself.
Freedom to trust that as I love Jesus in this life He will bring needed change. He will help me.
I’m free to live as a responder, not a researcher. Jesus tells us to seek Him first. If knowing Him, if hearing and responding to His voice is my aim, then I can trust Him to make me exactly who He wants me to be.
And why wouldn’t I like that girl?