Longing Wrongly

Day 3 of 6 • This day’s reading



Originals and Counterfeits

God is a personal God, and He has created me and placed me in this life I live:

From one man he made every nation of men … and he determined the times set for them and the exact places where they should live. God did this so that men would seek him and perhaps reach out for him and find him, though he is not far from each one of us.

The one-of-a-kind details of God’s work in our lives is far worthier of our contentment than lusting for (and even getting) someone else’s stuff could ever be. Satan is not the creator of originals, however. He is a counterfeiter to the core. If real “gold” is found in letting our unique differences spur one another to love and good deeds, then Satan’s fool’s gold causes us to discourage one another and sink into comparison or competition. I see this in my own life when the accomplishments and giftedness of others make me feel like a failure or meager in comparison; or when I place them on a pedestal or try to knock them off. When this happens, I realize that I am no longer resting in God’s creative activity, but trying to recreate myself to gain more self-esteem or worldly appreciation.

Maybe I need counseling—or maybe what I’m describing mirrors a common human experience: a failure to celebrate the different journeys we travel as we follow Christ. Just because you don’t have a child doesn’t mean that couples who do are targets of envy or lust. Just because you are single doesn’t mean you are “less than” because you don’t wear a ring on your left hand. If you don’t feel beautiful, remember that beauty comes from the heart, not the face: the mirror reflects God’s handiwork, not His mistake!

Each of us should seek to discover and use our spiritual gifts instead of feeling intimidated by the activation of someone else’s. Leaders, get to work instead of envying another entity’s resources. A bigger office and a larger staff don’t define your enterprise. God desires a personal and thoroughly intimate relationship with His children. He’s not like a coach in a locker room handing out identical jerseys; He is weaving garments for us that are matchless, one of a kind. You were born an original. Don’t die a copy!