Written by Paul J Bucknell on July, 13, 2019
Uniquely You! Learn how to incorporate praise into each area of your life!
Some lessons are slowly impressed upon us rather than quickly learning it. This slow learning characterized me until I learned the uniqueness of every individual played in life. Everyone is super important.
Learning About Uniqueness
It all started when I looked back on my teaching and wondered why I stressed the uniqueness of every individual in my teaching. Part of my mindset, no doubt, came from raising our eight children and how each uniquely expressed him or herself—though they share the same parents and background. Each child was so uniquely special, colored by their personalities, giftings, responses, etc. As a parent, I’ve learned not to underestimate the value of God’s design—one being quicker or slower, etc. Each has his/her particular way to approach life. I can look back and say, “Wow, I can see why God made each person so unique!”
Similarly, all of God’s children share a commonality of faith but a uniqueness in design. Each of God’s children is specially crafted. God works in each to display different glimpses of His person since each is made in His images as their Father.
“One God and Father of all who is over all and through all and in all” (Ephesians 4:6).
A Unique Design
God’s Word helps us to recognize how each Christian has been uniquely designed to reveal some aspect of God’s glory. A blend of our special set of gifts, our situation along with our personality grant us an opportunity to uniquely reveal God’s glory through what and how we do things.
Uniqueness means something different to the world, though. The world can observe the different preferences and talents with some interest—one artist or author compared with another. Differences are differences in their way special.
But the Lord designs people with His purposes in mind. Uniqueness is always linked to God’s purpose. Generally, people are made in God’s image to differently reflect His wonders (Gen 1:27), but this uniqueness is more than our inner personalities but also His special setting for our lives which provide opportunities to personally reflect God’s glory. Our accomplishments are not just tasks completed (i.e., the world’s boring perspective) but form a display counter for God’s praise. His glory in our lives can be seen in how we carefully take a photo or how we carefully set a table just right for the coming company or how we meticulously count money and make sure the ledger is correct. There is no end to display God’s wisdom when we rightly conduct ourselves. Every Christian is uniquely outfitted to carry out God’s ways and because of this, we can’t genuinely compare our lives or ministries with others. All have a particular opportunity to delight the Lord where He has placed them, explaining why the first can be last and the last first (Mat 19:30). God has His expectations for our lives built from His purposes for so fashioning us.
My Personal Discovery
I find myself, at times, overwhelmed in my soul with delight due to the wonderful ways that God works in my life. At the heart of this, is a clear recognition that I in no way deserve God’s grace in my life due to my sin, but God still works in me…and with others!
I’m equally convinced that God wants every Christian to discover how God works in their lives and retell their story to others. Our testimony equally starts sharing how we came to believe Christ and continues on with how Jesus uniquely carries out His purpose in our lives through the Spirit of Christ. (See more on how Christ’s Spirit works in us in my new book: Life in the Spirit! Experiencing the Fullness of Christ). Perhaps my reflective thoughts are more easily stirred because I’m getting older. I think more of God’s judgment and rewards as well as my legacy. I want to pass on my story of God’s work to others to further magnify His greatness. My life, though, is no more special than another, but it is my story, the only one I can tell due to how much it daily impresses my heart.
“So we Your people and the sheep of Your pasture will give thanks to You forever; to all generations we will tell of Your praise” (Psalm 79:13, NASB).
Asaph, the author of Psalm 79, recognizes that we are the Lord’s sheep and have been kindly cared for so that each of us might give praise to Him throughout all the generations. As a song writer, Asaph could write a Psalm (song) that would be passed on and song by many different generations even to this day! I am incredibly excited about how God works in all our lives.
Transforming Our Tasks at Hand
As a teacher, I want others to live to their fullest and see God’s lavish grace in their lives too. God seeks to equip His people to accomplish all the works that He has designed for them from before the foundation of the world (Eph 2:10). Our path has been carved out before us. Our confidence is that the Lord has specially equipped and placed us to accomplish those tasks, including sovereignly putting hardships, a support team, great friends, obstacles, etc., to meet the needed opportunities.
Leaping Beyond Mundane Activities
If we only take the earthly, mundane perspective, we will miss out on life and God’s faithfulness to us. Solomon speaks about the mundane life as “under the sun.”
“Thus I considered all my activities which my hands had done and the labor which I had exerted, and behold all was vanity and striving after wind and there was no profit under the sun” (Ecc 2:11 NASB).
People tiresomely say, “Oh, that is what I have been doing for years.” How many of us hear our colleagues say, “I’m glad it’s Friday.” When we see our lives as trite or normal, we miss out on God’s illuminating purpose for our lives. For example, think of the homemaker who washed her 10,751st dish. Nobody counts the dishes one washes or the number of clothes washed or the books read or the steps taken, but there is a greater significance than the actual function. We must capture all we do for God’s glory—the purpose of this article.
This learning starts by recognizing how God specially calls you as His child to represent Him in a given situation to serve others—as a wife, husband, mother, friend, brother, stranger, etc. I believe God wants us to live beyond the simple fulfillment of tasks (mundane) and be conscious of what we do in light of God’s purposes for our lives (heavenly). I realize this understanding often comes with maturity and that many Christians, including myself, tend to obey and simply get things done. When raising my many children, who had time to reflect on the more significant work being done? I should have paid attention to this more, though. At one point, God did, in fact, wake me up to this fact. (I share about this elsewhere.) When we are absorbed in our activities, we miss the greater glory of how we can do things with and for God, forgetting that we are on His mission. We indeed live for a purpose, His purpose.
“The conclusion, when all has been heard, is: fear God and keep His commandments, because this applies to every person” (Ecc 12:13 NASB).
Looking back, I see more clearly now how the Lord inspires, places, and strengthens me. He allows me not only to accomplish a task but calls me to gather wisdom, love, and hope for every task, accomplishing it in a way that brings pleasure to God and testifies of His patience, wisdom, physical stamina, and work in my life.
Don’t treat your life as “that is what is expected of me” kind of mentality. Many husbands have left their family—don’t take your faithfulness for granted. “I’m a father, and I care for my children,” or, “I remain married and love my wife.” Our activities reflect God’s good work if we would but step back and see God’s great intervening grace in us. We can treat them as repetitive or mundane activities or use our divine insight to see how uniquely God has called, equipped, and strengthened us for his glorious purpose.
I’m personally very excited about how God works in every individual. My purposes as a trainer and mentor utilize this same mindset to aid people to familiarize themselves with their God-given situations, including their difficulties and giftings, to incorporate God’s grace, carry out his purpose and give Him the glory. It is an exhilarating, crowning-like experience to be able to reminisce in God’s strength operating in our lives.
David recognized how God strengthened his hands for God’s appointed work. I don’t know how old or how many wars he fought before he realized it was God’s special work in his hands.
“He trains my hands for battle, so that my arms can bend a bow of bronze” (Psalm 18:34).
It appeared to be quite early in life from his testimony, “And David said, “The Lord who delivered me from the paw of the lion and from the paw of the bear, He will deliver me from the hand of this Philistine” (1 Sam 11:37). David could see his ability to fight the lion and bear to faithfully care for the sheep as a direct enabling from the Lord.
Each of us should look back and capture in one big swoop the lost moments of glory, realizing it has been God who guided and helped us all along. Because I see God’s mark on my life, I desire to further declare His glory. If we only focus on our tasks at hand, we will miss out on the higher glory of watching how He graciously equips us and makes us successful for His greater purposes.
We transform the mundane into the divine by recognizing God’s unique plan and special empowering to accomplish His purpose revealing more of His glory around us.
Study Questions on Uniquely You!
- What is uniqueness?
- How did the author come to be convinced of everyone’s uniqueness?
- Describe a mundane life.
- Why are mundane lives so unengaging and boring?
5. Describe a God-involved life.
6. Why is a “heavenly” view so much more exciting?
7. So how do we transform our average activity into a work of God?
8. Pick a few activities from your life and transform them into God’s special work. Keep track of how it works out for you and others.