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I am significant…I was created for good works in Christ Jesus.

Do you ever have the sneaking suspicion that you were made for more?  That you were actually made for greatness?  Do you ever feel like there is something significant that you were created to do/be/offer this world, but you just can’t quite picture it or figure out what it might be?  Everyone has questions- deep questions about life, our purpose here on earth, what is wrong with this world, how it will ever be fixed, and what is our part it that?  On a personal level, everyone comes to a point when they wonder,

“What am I here for?  I’ve gotten this far in my life…whether that bfinishing school, getting married, growing as a family, nailing a career…but really, is that it?  Is this all there is?” 

Growing up,  I wanted to live for a purpose bigger than me and to leave a mark on this world with my life.  I didn’t want to grow up, be a “normal housewife” and have 2.5 perfect kids and play tennis and golf everyday (although it does sound nice now).  I wanted to do something special with the time I was given.  But what?  But how?  I am just…me.  Along with my desires for significance, I felt pressures from all around me trying to squeeze me into a box of normalcy, predictability and insignificance that fed that “I am just little ‘ole me” mindset.  “Just be like everyone else”, the pressures kept saying.  Something deep inside me rejected that pressure, and I found out as I continued to grow in my faith that what was resisting that pull to “normalcy”, insignificance and complacency was the Spirit of God inside me claiming me as His own, claiming me as His workmanship for His glory.  

When we have a heart-to-heart connection with God through Christ, we no longer function according to the standards, expectations, and systems around us.  We are called to exceed them and live for eternal purposes that bring eternal good to the people, systems and nations in which we live.  We are called to live not for temporary significance that comes through promotions, wealth and success, but for eternal significance that comes from partnering with God to see His will done on earth as it is in heaven.  We were created to live significant lives for His glory, for His purposes and for our own good.  

We are given an invitation to walk in that significance.   It will look different for each person (and could involve being a housewife, a parent, a tennis player, a businessman, a senator, a street-sweeper, a bus driver, an economist, an actor, or an IT developer) but will encompass a deeper purpose that drives and empowers us in all of those roles.  The jobs we have, the positions we hold, the degrees we’ve earned, and the titles we posses are no longer what gives us significance internally; they instead can become platforms from which we live out the eternal significance we were made for.   We don’t have to wait until we’ve “arrived” at a place of importance in the standards of our world to find significance and purpose.  

Are you waiting around to find your significance and purpose?  Does this sound familiar??  I know it does to me

When I have a college degree, then I will have something positive to offer the world.  When I get married, then I will have found someone to complete me and to love.  When I have a steady and impressive job, then I will be able to influence others for good.  When I have kids, then I’ll have a deeper purpose that I can really be committed to and sacrifice for…When I…

When all these times, seasons, stages come and go, its clear that none of them bring the feeling of significance that the heart needs.  What I have realized is that when my eyes are always on the “when this happens” and “if only I had this” aspects of life, I am never fully satisfied.  My deep need to be significant, and to contribute to this world in a significant way are never fulfilled when my eyes are on myself and my feelings.  I find significance in partnering with God in His mission.

My hunger to for significance is satisfied when I am connected on a heart level to God, and am in tune with His heart for the people, events and the world around me.  I am most content when I am following His lead, and being a “minister of reconciliation” to those around me- just as He reonciled me back to Him, He is reconciling the WORLD- not just individuals and families, but the world–which includes communities, marketplaces, education systems, economies, culture, the arts and entertainment industries, science and technology, and beyond.  He is working in us- as we are witnesses of His redeeming grace and healing power, to influence, change, and improve the world in which we live according to His good purposes.

When He is king in our lives, His reign gets worked out into the spheres of influence where we live our daily lives.  When we submit our lives to Him and follow His lead in our moments and decisions, we will make significant differences in other’s lives and in the systems that surround us.  In doing so, we usher His rule, His peace, His wisdom, and His heavenly kingdom into the every sphere of society on the earth, which will impact, change, and disciple the nations.

His will being done on earth, as it is in heaven, as Jesus prayed.

This, in a tiny nutshell, is the Gospel of the Kingdom we are called to live and proclaim- that God cares about the whole world- and He, through Christ, and Christ through us, is healing our whole world, and renewing it all through His grace, power, truth and love. His plan is to bring this broken and hurting world back to the order of perfection and beauty that He originally established in the beginning.  He is the author and finisher of this great mission, and we are His ambassadors, called to prepare the way for the King’s coming and final rule.  What a significant role we have. What significant value we hold in His heart.

Colossians 1:13-20 (New International Version)
13 For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves, 14 in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.   15The Son is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. 16 For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him17 He is before all things, and in him all things hold together. 18 And he is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning and the firstborn from among the dead, so that in everything he might have the supremacy. 19 For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, 20 and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross.

Dear Friend,

Please know that you are significant because the same power that raised Christ from the dead lives and works in you to reach out and bring resurrection life to all things which includes all things–all individual people, all families, all communities, all businesses, all cultures, all the systems and structures of society around us and to which we relate.  You are significant becuase you have been invited by God into His mission to bring all things- the whole world- back to Himself.  Wherever you are, He wants to be there, working out His power, love, salvation and transformation in your midst.

You are significant because He loves you, He lives in you and He is working through you for eternal purposes, in the everyday situations, decisions and relationships you have.  He’s a networking, relational God who works in individuals, connects them with each other and Himself, and equips them out to apply the power of His love, healing and redemption to all things– everything we do, everyone we know, and everyplace we go.

That is significance.  May we all be transformed by knowing God heart to heart, and walk in His transformation power in all we do each day, from diapers, to documents, from family relationships and serving neighbors to leading corporations, serving in public office or driving the public bus.  It is all His, and we are a part of drawing all things back to His good and perfect heart.

This is who we are according to God’s unchanging word: 
 
I am the branch of Jesus Christ, the true vine, and a channel of His life ~ John 15:5
I have been chosen and appointed to bear fruit ~ John 15:16
I am a personal witness of Christ’s ~ Acts 1:8
I am God’s temple ~ 2 Corinthians 3:16
I am a minister of reconciliation ~ 2 Corinthians 5:17-20
I am God’s coworker ~ 2 Corinthians 6:1
I am seated with Christ in the heavenly realm ~ Ephesian 2:6
I am God’s workmanship ~ Ephesians 2:10
I may approach God with freedom and confidence ~ Ephesians 3:12
I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me ~ Philippians 4:13

May God’s abundant blessings and His ever present nearness assure you that you are significant in Him, by Him and for Him.

~ Wrapped in His Affection ~