I don’t remember when It became a part of my life. I could guess, but I am not sure, there were several wounds that welcomed It to rest securely within. I recall many childhood memories with It entwined amongst them.
Amidst the emotion driven teens, Its tendrils wound themselves tightly around my heart. My mind cheerlessly controlled by Its mission, often allowing toxic thoughts to affect my internal and external words.
As an adult I realised I wanted It to stop ruling me; I tried to break free by filling my life with goals, plans, ambitions, believing these held the key to the somber yearning I could never identify. Honestly, I just disguised Its symptoms behind a composed veneer. But It remained a constant companion.
Growing up I knew about God, I sat in many pews and heard many grace filled words. At times truth pierced the veil, drawing me nearer to the throne, but then, just as easily, it would pull me back, disconnecting me from the love I hoped would save me. A hope that often appeared too distant for me to reach. It would come with a whisper of ‘this is not for you’ and quickly lead me down steep paths I should never have walked.
The stepping-stones of comparison would carry my feet forward without thought. Was I prettier? Was I more accomplished? Was I a better Christian? A never ending set of questions with answers that rarely satisfied.
Down we would go, another step. Envy. They were always prettier, more popular, more talented... more more more ... always there was someone who was more.
From here the decent increased rapidly and I would easily sliding into the dark pit of jealousy. My feelings would turn from internal dissatisfaction to external resentment. Dark feelings submersed my heart in critical waters that left the sheen of shame, cloaked by bitterness.
Questions about my worth eroded my soul and disconnected me from God.
BUT He never gave up on me. Constantly He called to me, every place He could, He would entreat me to draw near, to come away.
Following His beckoning gave It less control.
It did not want to let go of the territory it had firmly taken in my heart and it fought to keep me earth-bound.
BUT He is no quitter and His never-ending grace began to weaken the roots It had so tightly woven through my being.
Firstly, His pure love undid the root of rejection.
Divorce, the first rejection of my infant heart. A pattern then reinforced across time, through unkind words and betrayals, leaving a legacy of insecurity and mistrust. Making it dangerously hard to trust an unseen God when I could barely trust seen man.
Gradually, continually, because that is how trust is truly established, He anchored me to the truth - He would never leave me or forsake me (Deuteronomy 31:6; Hebrews 13:5). His character is not flawed like man (Numbers 23:19) and there is no fear in the light of His perfect love; a love that goes beyond death to bring me home. There is no rejection in Him, only love and acceptance beyond compare (John 3:16).
Then He unwound the root of poverty.
A sense of lack had pervaded my life. I learnt to curb my dreams and accept my circumstances. It inhibited my vision and the ability to dream. It robbed me of hope and left me frustratingly dissatisfied. Always wanting more.
He exchanged the lie of limits for the promise of plenty. (Deuteronomy 28:12; Psalm 50:10). Here envy and jealously were dealt a deep blow. I realised that with Him there is more than enough for all His children. A Father gives good gifts to His children and delights in them – everyone of them (Matthew7:11). He breathed life into my dreams and love into my heart.
I thought It was gone for good. How could it remain after such truth? But there was one root that was planted deeper than the rest.
I was unaware it even rested within.
Then He came and asked me to lay something down, something so close to my heart, something we had built together that had become a deep part of me.
With every breath I could feel Abraham’s desperate struggle to obey and trust. Every step must have been so heavy, heart in turmoil and mind in doubt, on his climb to the top of Mount Mariah with his precious sacrifice.
But who may ascend His Mountain? Only those who have a pure heart, a heart free of all others control, a heart that idolizes no other. (Ps 24:3-4)
“Why would you ask me to surrender this? Have I done something wrong?” I pleaded, needing to understand, as we often do.
A whisper came, so soft and gentle. “Your greatest fear is not rejection or lack, your greatest fear is something much greater”. It caught me unaware.
“What?” I asked.
And then the light dawned on the lie of insignificance.
What if I was no longer acknowledged for my achievements, would I still matter? If every door was closed to me would I be happy being only known by God? Serving just one Master, not many. Would my footsteps fade into the darkness never to shine again?
I was terrified I wouldn’t count. I had made significance my idol.
Would the laying down of this work equate to the end of my value. If I stopped striving, would I lose my spot at the front of the line and be banished to the back, forgotten amongst the countless faces?
It was THE lie that It had used to feed every other fear. The belief that I did not matter, that I was insignificant.
It wants us to effortlessly accept our greatest fear. It keeps us helpless and hopeless. Amongst our 7.2 billion neighbours, we compare and compete at the touch of a screen, desperate to find our place, our meaning.
Yet ever so gently God whispers to us one by one, “You are unique, exquisite, you are chosen and you will always matter to me.” (Jeremiah 1:5, Ephesians 2:10, 1 Peter 2:9)
He reminded me that the One who willingly sacrifices His life for mine does not see me as insignificant. (John 3:16, Hebrews 12:2)
The truth is that every life matters and each person has eternal significance. Designed uniquely, like a precious gem or stunning flower. No two the same. A crafted masterpiece by a Creator who loves us regardless of what we do in any one season of our life.
We were not created to do; we were created to be - His. We are significant to Him and because of that, we become significant in our world. We matter more than we can possibly comprehend.
Do you have a deep sense of dissatisfaction?
Do you feel you have been overlooked or forgotten?
Do you feel envious or jealous of those around you?
Create a list of scriptures that reveal your true identity. Use the scriptures above to begin your journey and then take ones that are personal for you. Declare these over your life each week.