Have you ever noticed how some people just naturally have a loud personality? No matter where they go or who they are around, they are known for being the life of the party.

How about the people who seem to naturally have thick skin? They easily take charge and never seem to cower, even when facing criticism.

Or my favorite, how some folks are naturally intelligent and analytical? Darn these people! They seem to remember everything, are great with details, analyzing, and self-discipline.

How about how those who are extremely amiable? They are soft, gentle, quiet, and likable. They don’t seem to have a single enemy, and no matter what the circumstance, they are always able to stay calm.

Love makes the world go round and so do all of our differences and unique strengths.

There’s an apparent attack on identity in our culture. Satan doesn’t want us to know who we are, and a lot of girls make bad decisions because they don’t really know who they are. Maybe because we’re taught at a young age to be our best, we mistake our best for the best, and we forget that every single person is born with a few outstanding strengths and talents. We then adopt the beliefs of the great theologian Whitney Houston and chant “I’m every woman,” as we seek to find value in being number one in everything.

Then we begin to compare ourselves to the best musicians, the best athletes, our friend with the highest IQ, the girl who is so enjoyably the life of the party, the young woman that we know who is so disciplined, that person in our family that already has a good job, the friend that always has a boyfriend, and that girl in class who is so easily independent. The problem with this outlook is that there isn’t a single person alive who can be all in one: No one can perform Mozart, get a full ride scholarship in athletics, score a 30 on the ACT, and enjoy dancing on table tops at a birthday party, while still having enough discipline to leave by 9 p.m. to finish algebra homework, work weekends to save money, and map out a life plan.

What is painful to say is that those things that make you great will not be established as greatness until you believe that they are great; Until you believe that you are great.

When elephants are born in captivity, their owners often tie them to a 12 inch stake in the ground. As a baby they are unable to pull free from the stake. As they grow and become bigger, the owner keeps them on that very same stake. Because, although you and I know that at full-size they could easily plow up that stake from the ground, the elephant does not know that, believes that it can’t, does not try to move around, and remains in captivity. Similar to this elephant, most people believe things about themselves that are not true so they remain in captivity.

What a man thinks in his heart, so he is. (Proverbs 23:7)

There is something unique about you. If Christ died so that you can be free, the least you can do is take hold of that freedom. John 10:10 says, “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.”

Satan is after your identity, because if you don’t know who you are, you won’t have it in you to help other people – not in the powerful way that God really wants to use you to help other people.

My biggest struggle in high school was insecurity. I constantly compared myself to the best of other people, and I limited myself so much because of fear. God started working in me and changing me a couple years into college and I specifically remember the first time I thought in my head, “I think I like myself.” It was such a new feeling, and I thought the transformation was all about me. Shortly after, I learned that what God had done in my life was about something bigger. I realized God needs every single person to believe in themselves so that they can have the boldness to do big things for his kingdom. Our freedom has to do with so much more than ourselves. God can do anything, but he waits for our cooperation. The cost of missing out on your victory will be the breakthrough of other people who need your gift.

You are needed. You matter. It’s up to you to believe it.

Renee Bertalan

Author Renee Bertalan

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