So I know I have been away for a short time but it’s been for a good reason. I was blessed to attend a C.A.L.D. (Christ Appointed Leadership Development) workshop hosted by the PWOC (Protestant Women of the Chapel) group that I am a part of. I encourage you that if you live near a military installation , check and see if their chapel has a PWOC. Whether you are a military spouse or not I know you will be blessed. Anyways I would love to share with you what God shared with me during this workshop.
First and foremost God has created us individually and has penned a very unique signature on your life. How He has signed my life will not look like how He has signed your life, and my story won’t look like your story. But He has a very good reason for this (obviously). Before I go further let me explain what I mean by signed (full disclosure this is something I learned at the workshop so I can not take credit for this nifty acronym): Strengths, Interests, Gifts, Nature, Experiences, Devotion… S.I.G.N.E.D. We each have different strengths, interests, gifts, nature, experiences, and devotion, and combined together they make up God’s signature on our life.
What spoke to me the most was the experiences part. We all have vastly different experiences that God has allowed us to go through for a reason. He has allowed me to experience infertility, years of trying to conceive, the joy of pregnancy and child-birth, and sadly the tragic loss of my son and daughter. Although I may not fully understand the why of all this, I am confident of three things. First God has a very good reason for it. Second, this is exactly what He had planned for me before I was formed in my mother’s womb. And third, He is working it all out for my good! Praise God!!
In Jeremiah God speaks to Jeremiah and tells him, “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations” (Jeremiah 1:5). Now we may or may not be appointed prophets but you better believe we have been set apart. God has written your infertility and/or loss story on your heart and He desires that you use it and share it to glorify Him. As we contemplate the story He has written and how uniquely He has signed His signature we need to recognize three things: How has He made us, how He speaks to us (believe me He is ALWAYS speaking the question is are we ALWAYS listening), and how do we fit into His design.
Now you may be like me and hear all this and think, “Goodness why use me, I’m flawed, broken, insufficient, sometimes I feel worthless”. But when God looks at us all He sees is a perfect vessel that He can use. Remember 2 Corinthians 12:9 God says, “For my power is made PERFECT in weakness!” All He requires is faith and obedience, He can take care of the rest. And something else we are God’s masterpieces, lovingly and carefully created (inside, outside, and all that we experience) as a one of a kind work of art to be used however He chooses. That means all strengths, weaknesses, triumphs, and trials. Ephesians 2:10 says, “For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God has prepared in advance for us to do! And we know that God causes EVERYTHING to work together for the good of those who love Him and are called according to His purpose (Romans 8:28).
Are you still not convinced that He created and signed us and our experiences for a purpose? Do you still not feel adequate enough (I know I need a little more convincing sometimes)? Let me share this with you that I found recently floating around Facebook. Next time you think God can’t use you remember: Noah was a drunk. Abraham was old. Isaac was a daydreamer. Jacob was a liar. Leah was ugly. Joseph was abused. Moses had a stuttering problem. Gideon was afraid. Samson had long hair and was a womanizer. Rehab was a prostitute. Jeremiah and Timothy were too young. David had an affair and was a murder. Elijah was suicidal. Isaiah preached naked. Jonah ran from God. Naomi was a widow. Job went bankrupt. Peter denied Christ. The disciples fell asleep while praying. Martha worried about everything. The Samaritan woman was divorced more than once. Zaccheus was too small. Paul was too religious. Timothy had an ulcer. And Lazarus was dead!
I might add myself to that list… I don’t have a sense of smell, I have half a uterus, I’m infertile, I’ve lost my children, I’m terrified of public speaking, and I tend to be socially awkward and yet I am learning when I answer God obediently, He can do remarkable things inspire of my weaknesses and failures. Praise you Father in Heaven that you are far bigger, stronger, and greater than me!