*I am pleased to have guest blogger Heather Holmes sharing her insights with us today!
It’s NOT about YOU!!!” This emphatic statement from a former mentor rings in my memory when I find myself believing the lie that I am the center of the universe; that the Bible and life and relationships and work and traffic and…are all about me, my needs, my schedule, my notoriety, me, me, me.
This might not be you today. Maybe today your spirit is focused on the One who is the center of all things, who is the I AM. Colossians 1:16 reminds us, “For in him (the Son of God, Jesus Christ), all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him.” Did you see that? Don’t miss it… “through him and FOR HIM.” This life that we live, in the eternal perspective, is not about us. It’s ALL about Jesus! Upon careful reading of the entire Bible, one can see that it collectively points to Jesus. The primary purpose of our lives is to worship God, honor him, and point to him through our words and actions.
For the last few years, my life has been lived in semesters. I am working toward a degree and it seems as though each semester, God has something new in store for my ongoing spiritual formation. Last semester, it was the constant reminder, “It’s NOT about YOU, Heather!” I lovingly refer to myself as a recovering perfectionist, which means I am prone to believing the lie that everything and everyone is dependent on me, my perfect performance and my perfect abilities. Can you hear it woven in there? The lie? It says, “It’s all about you, Heather.”
Let’s be real. I am not, never have been, never will be, and am not expected by anyone other than myself to be perfect. Praise the LORD, hallelujah! What a relief…and yet, similar to the Israelites of the Old Testament, I am forgetful. I forget who God is in relationship to who I am. I forget that I am not, in fact, Wonder Woman, sent to save mankind from evil. I forget my identity as a beloved child of God, whose primary responsibility in life is to remain connected to the vine. In John 15:5, Jesus reminds us of an essential truth for life in the Spirit. He says, “I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me, you can do nothing.” What a beautiful reminder that my identity, as well as any good thing that comes from me, is because of Jesus Christ. Thanks to the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus, our lives can be transformed. It is not about us and our abilities! It’s all about him.
Right about now, it’s likely that some of you may be thinking, “But wait! While this is true, isn’t it also true that we have a God-given role to play in this life? Hasn’t God given us gifts and talents to be used for His glory?” Why yes! You are exactly right. It is both-and. While on one hand, this life is NOT about US; on the other hand, God has given his children gifts to be used for his glory and the building up of the Body of Christ.
In 1 Corinthians 12, we are reminded of the various gifts given by the Holy Spirit to Christ-followers. We also read about the Body of Christ and how each one of us represents a different part of the Body. If one person chooses not to be who they are created to be, the whole body suffers. “If the whole body were an eye, where would the sense of hearing be? If the whole body were an ear, where would the sense of smell be? But in fact God has placed the parts in the body, every one of them, just as he wanted them to be. If they were all one part, where would the body be? As it is, there are many parts, but one body.” (1 Cor. 12:17-20) Each one of us is created by God’s design, in his image, in a unique way to glorify God and benefit those around us.
This life is not about you…and at the same time, you have been created specifically and uniquely in God’s image to glorify Jesus Christ and bless the collective body of Christ by being YOU. May we remain connected to the vine, growing more into the likeness of Christ each day, glorifying God as we worship Jesus Christ, and honoring him by faithfully using the gifts he has given each one of us.
*Heather Holmes is a mom to an elementary-aged daughter and wife to her sweetheart of almost 15 years. She is a student at the DTS Dallas Campus, working towards a master’s degree in Educational Ministries and Leadership with a focus on Ministry to Women. Heather's favorite aspect of DTS is serving in the Spiritual Formation Department, walking alongside students through this unique season of their spiritual journeys. When she's not at school, Heather enjoys cook-outs in the back yard with family and friends, Pilates, exploring the outdoors, and doing almost anything crafty.