God is changing lives at Immanuel because of your generous partnership with Accelerate! Thank you! Every Friday, we’re taking a peek at how God is working in the lives of our high school students. These servants of Jesus are walking daily by faith as they navigate the hallways and relationships inside their school walls and beyond. Our weekly series will highlight what God is up to in their lives in their voices. Leave them some encouragement by commenting?
by Alexus Jones
As I type to you, it is Thursday, January 31, 2013. In knowing that February lies just beyond the horizon, I praise the Lord for the ending of this month. I look forward to the next twenty eight days of this year and pray that they will not reflect the first thirty one. Trials and hardships and tests have not been scarce this season, and I must admit that I’m not very sure how to handle them. With school, music, relationships, harmony at home and my sanity all hanging in the balance, I can feel a looming sense of inadequacy that sinks down to crush me a little bit more every day.
In my sixteen—almost seventeen—years of life experience, I have yet to find a more all-consuming, petrifying, fear-instilling beast than the fear of inadequacy. That ever-lurking, ever-urging, ever-pushing necessity to be “enough” has brought wonderful people into the deepest, darkest misery. There is not a human being on this earth that does not desire better sufficiency of some quality.
Some desire to be smart enough. Some desire to be pretty enough. Some desire to be talented enough.
Many, like me, desire all three and more. I am reminded of the disappointing nature of my physical, emotional and personal features on a never-ending, daily cycle, and I’m very aware that I am not the only one caught in this hamster-wheel-like trap.
We as humans have a tendency to allow other people to chew us up and spit us out. We compare our appearances and personalities to those around us, and we always manage to find that one person that we could never be better than. We tell ourselves, “I just wish I could look like this person,” or, “If only I could be as likeable as this person.”
With Christianity, I often find myself thinking, “I wish I could be as holy as this person.” I think we have fooled ourselves into believing that God looks at us in the same way—that He only sees what we could be and never simply loves us for what we are right now. How could He? I mean, look at me. I am a screw-up. I am a teenage punk with bright red hair and a terribly selfish personality. How could God ever use me and all of my inefficiencies to serve His perfect will? When I looked into this topic of inadequacy in the Bible, I discovered something interesting. Moses in all of his glory felt the same way as I do.
“But Moses protested to God, ‘Who am I to appear before Pharaoh? Who am I to lead the people of Israel out of Egypt?’” (Exodus 3:11 NLT).
Let me paint a picture for you:
Moses is a shepherd—a fairly typical occupation for a man in this day. Shepherds are not considered particularly brilliant or particularly special in any sense of the word. Yet, it is to this shepherd that God decides to reveal His breath-taking glory and ultimate power. As Moses and his sheep trek through the wilderness of Mount Sinai, Moses stumbles upon a burning bush. As he approaches the bush, Moses is brought to the understanding that he is looking upon an embodiment of God Himself. This burning bush essentially says, “Hey! I just met you, and this is crazy, but My people are enslaved in Egypt right now. I’ve heard their cries, and I’m now going to rescue them, and I’m picking you to be their leader. Surprise!” Moses is terrified. He asks, “Who am I to appear before Pharaoh? I am no one. How could I—a simple shepherd—possibly be selected as the leader for the people of Israel?”
God answered, “‘I will be with you. And this is your sign that I am the one who has sent you: When you have brought the people out of Egypt, you will worship God at this very mountain.’” (Exodus 3:12 NLT).
As the story continues, we see God providing for Moses again and again. In Exodus 4, Moses is worried that no one will think he was truly sent from God. God provides him with a miracle to reveal to anyone that questions his authority. Again in Exodus 4, Moses tells the Lord, “I’m not very good with words. I never have been, and I’m not now, even though you have spoken to me. I get tongue-tied, and my words get tangled.” (Exodus 4:10 NLT). God allows Moses’ brother Aaron to speak for him. As Moses leads the people of God out of Egypt, God provides for his every need. God sends deadly plagues to free His people. He parts a sea for His people. When they are wandering a desert, God provides food and water for His people. God asked Moses to fulfill His purpose, but He never asked him to do it alone.
God asked Moses to fulfill His purpose, but He never asked him to do it alone.
God has designed you with purpose, but He never asks you do fulfill it on your own. In the same way that God provided for Moses and Israel, He will provide for you.
Every characteristic that the world views as a fault is facet of design in the eyes of God.
Never give into believing that the world can place a price tag on you.
In the eyes of God, you are someone worth dying for.
Alexus Jones is a junior at Lakes Community High School. She plays in the high school youth group worship band and works backstage on Sunday mornings at Immanuel Church. She is a singer/songwriter who desires to glorify God with the abilities that He’s entrusted to her.