If we are in the family of God, we all have the same mission.
Jesus kept it simple:
And he said to them, “Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation.
Mark 16:15 (ESV)
With our mouths, we proclaim that he defeated death forever despite our sinfulness. With our love, we act out his affection for His precious creation. With our actions, we mimic His personal involvement in each of our lives through service and discipleship.
I love that God gave us all the same mission for our time on earth. It means we can cheer each other on while running the same race. I love spurring on other daughters of God in particular!
I also love how God gives us specific gifts to accomplish this mission. If you know me, you know that I love to study personality. I am so intrigued by the things that makes each person unique.
When I was younger, I could easily name off aspects of my personality that I was thankful for. I’ve always had a very tender heart, for example, and a natural love for others. I also have always enjoyed writing and being creative.
I’m sure that you could come up with a similar list of things about yourself that you enjoy. These are the things that we naturally see as useful in our mission as children of God. Maybe you love kids and spend Sunday mornings teaching littles about Jesus. Maybe you are gifted musically and love to lead others in worship. The list goes on!
But… there are some other traits that I have not always been so proud of. Maybe you have a few, too. These are probably traits that you believe you have ‘too much’ of.
Maybe you feel like you’re a little too loud or a little too quiet. You’re too friendly, too stuffy, too boring, too intense. You care a little too deeply, you cry a little too often, you laugh a little too easily. Again, the list goes on.
For me, it’s my sensitivity and my willingness to be vulnerable.
It’s as though when God created me, He forgot to add thick skin and a filter for my oversharing. On numerous occasions, I’ve been conversing with someone about what’s going on in my heart only to be met with some version of, “Anyway, on a happier note…”
Other people are uncomfortable with negative emotions. Other people don’t talk about the deepest parts of their heart. As a young adult stepping out on my own for the first time, I became painfully aware that I was different in this way.
For a while, I fought these things. I thought they were weaknesses meant to be suppressed.
I’ve been told, “Write about something happier!” and I’ve tried to oblige. I’ve sat down with the intention to write about meal planning or home decorating or something else more palatable… but I usually come up empty.
In a group setting, I’ve held back my thoughts out of fear and then spill them to my husband later.
He’d ask, “Why didn’t you share that with everyone else?”
Because I don’t want to make everyone uncomfortable. Because I’m way too sensitive and I cry too much and I think too hard and I go too deep.
This loop played over and over in my mind.
I felt overwhelmed at times with the personality God had given me. I would pray and journal about these traits. I told Him that I wished he had made me more lighthearted and easygoing, because I was certain that I was a burden to myself, to others, and to Him.
But God didn’t find me burdensome.
He began showing me that he had made me ‘too much’ in these areas for His purposes. He started teaching me that my personality was a gift to be used for His glory.
He kept affirming me in these areas, and eventually I couldn’t ignore Him anymore.
I wrote honestly, and I received messages from people that were comforted in a similar season. I shared openly, and I was encouraged to keep paving the way for others who have difficulty sharing.
And the more He confirmed that I had been given gifts instead of burdens, the more I leaned into them. The result has already been so life-giving.
I’m writing today to spur you on to take a look at what you’ve been given ‘too much’ of.
Chances are, it was given to you as a gift. To be molded, redeemed, and used for God’s purposes. And I hope that you don’t run away from what He has done intentionally.
The rest of us need what you have been given plenty of.
Feel free to spread it around.