Are you brave enough to be vulnerable? To reach out to another man or woman when you need help and dive in head first into your shame?
Are you strong enough to be sensitive and cry whether you are hurting or happy, even if it makes you look weak?
Are you confident enough to listen to the people in your life and hear their ideas and their solutions? To hold their anguish and actually believe in them even if what they’re saying is against you? Whether they are young, old, a person who had the perfect grades and a degree or someone who didn’t go to college?
This is what we need in this world. Brave peers. Strong mentors. Confident leaders.
And if you think about it, you are totally that, if you step foot out and take that challenge. What you need to do before you go off conquering the world, is focus more on your character rather than worrying of your reputation. Your character is WHO you are behind the curtains, and your reputation is what you’re known for (both mistakes and victories). Your character is how you act and what you do by yourself….and in front of God.
Your character can also help your reputation. The ultimate example in this case would be Jesus. He says who He is by Himself, and depending on who you’re asking, His reputation varied. If you asked His disciples, He is the Son of God. If you asked those who persecuted Jesus, they believed He was a joke. In conclusion, Jesus is the Son of God, AND your reputation isn’t the same everywhere, it’s an opinion.
An opinion at which you have the power of choosing how to respond to it. You could be angry at it, offended, or choose to accept it or ignore it and move on. You can’t live your whole life trying to impress everyone because it’s only going to drain you out. You’ll end up doing things that you normally wouldn’t do, becoming a whole different person, and a secret you may not have heard is that, private victories translate into public victories. You’re doing the right thing when you’re by yourself, which will turn around and become a public thing because that’s what you’re use to, how you work, what you do and people will see the salt and light that you are.
What does your character look like when you’re angry or irritated? Of course anger isn’t wrong, I mean Jesus even got angry at times; but analyze yourself in a place where you want something, but God says ‘no.’
“In your anger do not sin”: Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry..”
Ephesians 4:26 NIV (read further in your bible, it gets intense!!!)
A ‘no’ often means that there’s a better ‘yes’ somewhere else, but in those times, rejection or that simple “no,” is not really the answer we want to hear.
So then you lose patience or you get frustrated.
Your frustration is trying to tell you something, that something doesn’t really fit in your life anymore. It’s telling you that something needs to be adjusted and that God is requiring a GREATER level of focus.
That frustration will help you focus. You’ll be bothered by a lot of things and you just need a good dose of that frustration every now and then to make you mad enough to help you see and focus on what you’re missing out on. Like five year olds who throw tantrums when parents say no, we are exactly that when our God who is also like our parent says no, for our own good.
So I’m challenging you today, my reader, to take some time in your day to think about how you can glorify His name by your actions and words. Forgiving, loving, sharing, asking someone how their day is. Become a leader and believe in yourself. Don’t beat yourself up too much because you’re only taking steps back when you need to move forward. It’s definitely not going to be easy, but you have the FULL ARMOR OF GOD on and nothing can stop you now. You can’t blame anyone else but yourself if you give up, so get up and move.
By God’s grace that saved a wretch like you and like me, we are found. We are called conquerers, we are called His, we are called to be salt and light and to share the joy that we are blessed with. To glorify His name that is high and mighty and that darkness trembles at. In His name, we are given strength, we are made beautiful, we are forgiven.
Though our shames and sins are ugly, His grace and love for us are bigger and more beautiful than what can compare.
Be fine, fierce and friendly.
Love y’all buckets,