(Editor’s note: The following excerpt is from Chapter 1 of Rhonda Sexton’s book entitled, “Encouraging Change.” The title of this chapter is “Know Yourself.”)
Who are you? The normal titles we take on from birth include daughters, sons, brothers, sisters, etc. We learn these roles and then we become wives, husbands, parents, aunts, uncles, and grandparents.
We also take on societal roles as students, friends, co-workers, employers, caregivers, and teachers.
But do these roles truly explain who we are or are they just our physical bodies and minds trying to live in a physical world? Loving and, dare I say, worshiping only the thing(s) that we can feel, see, and touch?
Our worldly view of ourselves as we know it doesn’t look too promising.
We are in despair from the poverty-stricken families to the wealthiest businessman. Simply look around, watch the news or talk to a friend or two to hear a long list of how the world as we know it is falling apart.
As I study 1 Corinthians I have found Paul was so insightful to his church. I am amazed how timely his words are for us today.
Chapter 1, Verse 20 asks, “Where are the wise people of this world? Where are the philosophers, the scholarly, the debaters? Well, they are here in the world that we can see. But whose message are they spreading? What do they believe in?”
This screams out to all the knowledge of science and technology and while it has helped us advance, has it made us better people? God wants you to ask yourself where you fall into this spectrum and what’s your message. Am I in a fish tank performing for a viewer, doing what’s expected and what I am conditioned to do, fitting in the box? Does what I do, how I live, really make a difference?
People of this world are truly inspired, educated and talented people but they aren’t necessarily happy. We could even go as far as to add in the brilliant musicians, actors, and all those with superstar status.
But daily we hear of drug abuse, divorce. and suicide from this select group. We can clearly see the world view of success doesn’t guarantee happiness.
Verse 21 goes on to say, “All the worldly wisdom that is given us was not, and is not, sufficient for us to know Him — but it pleases Him when people are saved by simply the good news of Jesus.”
Verse 25: “Any foolishness of God is wiser than any man, and any weakness of God is stronger than any man’s strength.” 1 Corinthians 3:19: “The wisdom of this world is foolishness before God.”
Again, Paul is warning believers, don’t worry with what the world view is trying to cram down your throats to appease your physical nature. Your time and efforts are so much more valuable. Don’t trust what the world says you need (advertising), what the world wants you to believe (political views), what the world thinks you should be (education, careers, fame) and don’t even get me started on how the world says we should look.
But what should we trust? If you know Christ, you have access to the Holy Spirit of God Almighty. You can trust this without a doubt. This spirit within you is the same blessed wisdom that guided Jesus Christ. This may be foolishness to scientists or rock stars, but it is what Christ gave to you after He paid the ultimate price.
God your creator has designed you to be, do, and experience in this lifetime. If His will says you will be, no manner of principalities, laws, armies or professional opinions will stop you. You will be.
You are not meant to fit in a nice, neat box. You were designed to break the mold and live outside the lines.
(Rhonda is a staff writer for The News-Dispatch. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 451-3798.)
Classes are now forming for May, if you are interested in attending a 6 week class or hosting a seminar event please contact Rhonda using the information above.