I also know that you have moments where you don't feel smart enough. You compare yourself to the next guy and wonder how life can be so easy for him. You don't feel strong enough. Your emotions get the best of you and beat you up every week. You don't feel pretty enough. All the people on TV are so beautiful; why can't that be you, you wonder. You don't feel talented enough. All your friends seem to have these great musical gifts and artistic strengths but not you. You don't feel good enough. Not tall enough, not short enough, not fat enough, not skinny enough, not happy enough, not brave enough....not enough. You feel far from perfect.
But you are perfect. You object, "No, I'm not!" True, not when comparing yourself to your neighbor, no. They might be faster; they might be more athletic but that's why they were created to be an athlete. You, on the other hand, may be created to be a painter, an architect, a teacher, a lawyer, an author...Therefore, you are perfect for what your purpose here on earth is. You weren't meant to be Sally and Harry wasn't meant to be you. You are different for a reason so the comparison game is invalid. It makes no sense. See, you have the gifts, whether or not you are aware. They are in there; it's just a matter of believing in them so that you see them and activate them. Do you have eyes that perceive? There is so much more than you can see.
I know it's hard to believe sometimes that you have the potential to be greater tomorrow than you feel today. You feel broken, unworthy, undeserving at times. You want to give up and run away. I know. You see the worst in yourself. You feel too tired, you don't look the part, you're too young, you're too inexperienced, you don't know anybody...excuse after excuse after excuse. You may even have fallen into a place of complacency where you've given up and settled for less. Though you secretly wonder when it will get better and you'll know what that thing called, "happiness" is that everybody talks about. Yet your fear keeps you focusing on your imperfections.
When people ask you what your dreams are, you shake it off. You say you're too busy for that stuff, your family takes up too much of your time, you're not meant to be anybody, you will get around to them "one day." But "one day" never comes. What does come is age, marriage, kids, a boring job in a boring cubicle with a boring boss, and more and more distractions. Then, "one day" you do snap out of it, once you're older and everyone's gone, and as an 80 year old, you wonder what happened to me? Why didn't I ever do such and such? If only I could go back...
Yet, your fear kept holding you hostage your whole life, enslaving you to cruel, self-degrading thoughts. You entertained those lying, evil thoughts long enough that you began to speak them and the more you said them out-loud, the more you believed them, until one day, a lie became a false truth in your life. You ran so far away from the truth that you lost your way focusing on why you wouldn't succeed rather than why you would. You only opened your eyes to your brokenness and closed your eyes to your wholeness. Now your entire life has been wasted because you believed that you were as far from perfect as they came. That you were nobody special.
Fortunately, that doesn't have to be you. If that is you, you can still do something meaningful and teach your kids and grandkids that they are gifted, they are beautiful, they are called, they are perfect for the purpose that they were made to fulfill. Nothing should put out their sunshine and leave them in the dark where they can't see anything. The good news is, if you're still living, you still have time. Time to focus on the best in you, not the worst. Time to focus on what you CAN do, instead of what you can't. Time to see yourself not as flawed and decrepit but as complete and perfect, lacking in nothing. That's how I see you. I know that you were born to be more than you could even begin to imagine. I know that you have unearthed gifts and talents that you will give to the world. I know that you will do greater things than even I did. I know it will matter that you have lived. I know that you may feel like an imperfect person but you are the perfect person to make a difference and find your happiness along the way. I know because I made you. I see the best in you even when you see the worse. I see you for who you really are: able, competent, capable, strong, bright, gifted, beautiful, and on and on and on. Do you really see what I see when I look at you?
(This is what I believe God is saying to many of us. Are we not just seeing but are we really listening?)