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Knowing Ourselves

We humans are most fully alive when we know ourselves well; when we discover who we were created to be.

First and foremost, we're God's family. That's the primary understanding we need to experience in order to live well.

​But children —including children of God—usually have a preferred activity, something they really enjoy doing. As a child my sister Joan loved to read and play quietly. I was the opposite: I climbed trees, explored the nearby creek and played loud and hard. Fun looked very different to each of us.

Our greatest sense of fulfillment in life comes when we understand how God wired us and what gives us the most pleasure.

Yes, pleasure. God, being a good Father, wants us to enjoy life, and to live with a sense of fulfillment. For that reason He put something in YOU that He didn't put in anyone else on the planet. He wants you love your life and feel fully alive as you live out your purposes on Earth.

That doesn't mean life will always be easy or perfect. But knowing who you are and fulfilling your purposes in relationship with your Creator will enable you to be the best version of 'you' that is possible—and give you the most satisfaction.

Paul (in the Bible) was an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God (Eph 1:1). You're made by the will of God to be someone special, someone with certain strengths expressed in certain ways.

I'll use myself as an example. I have a mix of two primary gifts that are talked about in the Bible: prophetic and teaching. Now, we shouldn't label or limit people by their gifts, because we're all much more complex than being boiled down to a spiritual gift set. But for the sake of this discussion, I'll talk about those two gifts in my life.

A teacher gift can be expressed in many different ways. Being a school teacher. Teaching seminars. Teaching from Sunday morning pulpits. Teaching through writing. Giving tours. Being a parent. Training others in a profession.

My favorite way of using my gift mix of prophetic and teaching is through writing. I am alive when I write! Writing is my voice and my pleasure...BUT...honestly, I love writing mainly because I'm able to prophetically express and share (teach informally) the heart of God through putting words on paper.

Not only have I discovered my gifts, but I also know writing is the vehicle that will give me the greatest joy in expressing them. Both are important: knowing our gifts, and knowing the best expression of those gifts that gives us life.

What's your passion? What do you LOVE to do? Have you given much thought to when you're happiest, to what gives you emotional energy? It could be anything! Visiting with people. Teaching. Painting. Working with numbers. Leading. Serving others. Bringing justice for others. Gardening...etc.

Have you found the best venue for expression of your gifts? I was an elementary school teacher, but that wasn't a good fit for me. Sometimes we can be fully applying our gifts, but we're not satisfied because we haven't discovered the where or the how that best fits our personality.

The process of knowing who we are and what makes us feel most alive takes time. And it takes relationship with our Creator. He made us after all, and He knows us best.

If you're not satisfied, start a dialogue with God. Ask for understanding. Ask for clues. Ask for help. He's willing and able. Keep asking, keep talking. He's listening and He'll answer. Through the coming months, as you keep asking and seeking, He'll walk with you through new discoveries about yourself. Give it time. God isn't a slot machine. He's relational: a father who wants to walk with you as He leads you to flourish as His offspring.

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