I have great news for you today and I want you to believe it with all of your heart. You were created for a reason and you have a specific God-given purpose to fulfill in life. Sometimes it can be hard to imagine why God would want to use someone like us, because of the mistakes we have made. We are ashamed of our past and feel like we are unworthy of ever being of value to Him or anyone else. That’s just not true. God will use your life experiences to help others. He will use your painful moments to bring peace in someone else’s heart. It’s called your testimony and it is the most powerful thing you have when you make the decision to share your faith with others.
Growing up our refrigerator was littered with magnets. Some of them were funny and others had encouraging messages. One of them said, “I know I’m somebody, cause God don’t make no junk”. I would think about this message every time I battled with my lack of self-confidence. Whether it was being a skinny grade schooler who got pushed around to an arrogant rock solid 215-pound man in his 20’s, I continually thought of not being good enough. When my baseball playing career was not going well, I turned my back on God instead of running to Him. I figured He couldn’t use an ordinary guy like me. At times I felt less than ordinary and more like a nobody.
God has a knack for using people that others see no value in. He has the ultimate positive view of seeing treasure in someone else’s trash. Years ago, my wife turned me on to a quote that changed my life; “God does not always call the equipped, He equips the called!” God will use who He wants for what He wants, when He wants. You don’t need to have a master’s degree in counseling or be a pastor to help someone. God allowed you to go through certain trails that turned into your testimony so you can share it with others and make an extraordinary impact on their lives. Here are three attributes that will help you develop a mindset that goes from seeing yourself as someone ordinary to extraordinary.
This is having an unshakeable belief that God has called you to do something. You trust in His plan even when it makes no sense to the common man. It is that small still voice that you heard from God to go do this work. An example for me is when I started the youth baseball company, Cactus Athletics. Within 10 days of being let go from my job in Michigan, I sold everything I owned, bought an SUV and trailer with my home equity line, and moved 2,000 miles to live with my Mom in Sun City West, AZ.
I could have focused on what a loser I was by getting fired. It wasn’t the first time it happened to me. Only seven months prior to being let go, I was axed from a sales and management position. This could have easily raised doubts in my ability to be good at anything. However, I decided to spend time quietly with God and seek His will for my life. I ended up making this decision because I knew it was God’s plan. Some people were supportive, while others believed I was nuts. It didn’t matter to me what the naysayers thought. I knew what to do and believed it in my heart.
“Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about we do not see.”Hebrews 11:1, NIV
There are different ways to view a situation. Some look more at short term gains and focus on what is important in the moment. There is value in this, but sometimes we get so caught up in the here and now, that we lose sight on what is more meaningful. For myself I could work my business seven days a week to make as much money as possible and totally miss my kids growing up. What kind of a leader would I be to my family if I continually poured into others, but neglected my wife and kids in the process? I would have been an absentee father and missed so many moments that are just not the same on camera. That’s not God’s family design.
I decided to have a long-term view and focus on being a good husband and father, while also ministering to others through my baseball business. I chose to have a kingdom world view and realized that glorifying God and being thankful for the blessings He gave me was more important than receiving accolades from others. It’s really His business and I am working for Him, the best CEO ever. I knew that honoring the sabbath and working only 5 or 6 days a week would bring greater blessing upon my family and also restore me with energy and peace.
“For I know the plans I have for you”, declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a futureJeremiah 29:11, NIV
One of the most dangerous prayers you can ever pray is to ask God to use you. When you do this, you need to be all in. It’s not like going to a Golden Corral buffet where you get to choose what you want. When you are totally invested and God tells you to do something, He will find a way to help you do His work. Just ask Jonah. He tried running to Tarshish instead of going to Nineveh and ended up taking an Uber ride in Moby Dick. You have to be willing to pay the price for the calling that God has put on your life. I can tell you that the thought of starting a youth baseball business was exciting more than scary, but I didn’t know how daunting it would be.
I learned that a “no” at the time, was an opportunity for a “yes” in the future. Initially when I started the business our logo was heavily focused on the Christian aspect of our mission. An influential district president shared with me that he loved what I was doing but felt it would be a hard sell to his leagues. I prayed about it and sought counsel from my pastor. I decided to change the logo, but the mission stayed the same. Within a month I was being promoted to a few thousand families by the same president and a year later I gave a presentation on pitching to every Little League district president in the state of Arizona. That gave me access to tens of thousands of parents.
“So let us not become tired of doing good; for if we do not give up, the time will come when we will reap the harvest.”Galatians 6:9, GNT
Here are some things to think about this week and apply to your life:
- Believe that God has a designed plan for your life and that He wants to use you.
- Have a kingdom world view focusing on glorifying God versus self.
- Trust that His plan is better than yours.
- Get counsel from Godly men when you are going through a difficult situation.
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