This post is adapted from Words of Strength and Promise: Devotions for Youth. Read below for a devotion written by Juliana Shults.
You are one of a kind.
Did you read that sentence as a compliment or an insult? We have all heard those words, or ones like them, spoken in affirmation when someone does something extraordinary or is exactly the right person for the task in front of them. We have also heard the words used in anger, stinging with rejection, as someone is seen as too different, too hard to understand, unable to fit in with others. The same six words, yet context and inflection give them dramatically different meanings.
There is truth in that sentence. God's Word tells us that God has lovingly formed each of us. Yet, being one of a kind, just like that sentence, can be a double-edged sword.
Created and Known by God
You are uniquely created by God. Isaiah 43:1 says,
Thus says the LORD, He who created you, O Jacob, He who formed you, O Israel: ‘Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name, you are Mine.’
You are created and formed by our all-powerful God. This same God has called you by name and redeemed you through Jesus’ death on the cross. You are one of a kind, a person created and known by God.
You are one of a kind. No one has your same gifts, skills, passions, and experiences. We can spend a lot of time criticizing our appearance, our gifts, and our status. The truth is that God made you and placed you with great intention. You aren’t an accident or a mistake. In your Baptism, God has given you important ways to serve the church, your family, and your community. Other people need you to be exactly who God has made you to be. God’s world is richer for having you in it. The Body of Christ benefits when God works in and through you.
Standing Out in the Crowd
Being who God made you and baptized you to be is not easy. In fact, it can be desperately difficult and even lonely at times. If we are true to who God made us to be and to the faith He has given us, we might discover we don’t fit into the world the way others do. Living as Christians in this world can be difficult. We have God’s Holy Spirit to help us love our enemy and to protect all life as precious. God calls us to be light of the world and a city set on a hill (see Matthew 5:14 from Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount). This doesn’t mean we get to fit in or blend in with the crowd. In fact, it makes us stand out.
You are one of a kind, someone who doesn’t just blend in with the world. Isaiah 43:2 reminds us that waters, rivers, fire, and flame will threaten us. The world will sometimes feel dangerous. It will be overwhelming, and we may even wonder where God is. We are going to experience rejection and loneliness. Yet God promises that He will be with us every step of the way. God will protect us and support us with His Holy Spirit.
A Community of Unique Believers
You are one of a kind, but you are never alone. You have a God who loves you enough to send His only Son, Jesus, to die for you. That same God walks beside you through everything and gives you a community of Christians who share your faith. God has given you faithful people who love and care for you, even in times when you feel alone.
You are one of a kind, and that can be both wonderful and difficult. In those times when it is a joy, we celebrate. We praise the God who made us and called us by name into faith. When it is hard, we remember Isaiah 43:4:
Because you are precious in My eyes, and honored, and I love you.
You are loved deeply by God. When there seems to be no one else quite like you, remember that as a Christian, you are going to be different. When loneliness and rejection set in, remember that you are loved by the one true God, and He has given us one another to be the Church together.
You are one of a kind; never doubt it. It is exactly how God made you to be.
Post adapted from Words of Strength and Promise: Devotions for Youth copyright © 2021 Concordia Publishing House. All rights reserved.
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