Something deep inside each of us longs to count. We want to matter to the world. We long to make a difference. We get bored, tired, even depressed by routine and monotony. We’re desperate for significance. We’re searching for acknowledgment. We beam when someone says, “You matter.” We seek praise, accolades, and awards, but somehow once we achieve them, they feel empty and we move on to another desperate search for the next fix that will affirm our worth.
While we long for significance, we wrestle with whether that longing is good and godly. But what if it is? What if God expects us to discover and unleash our God-given influence?
In Galatians 6:4 we’re told to, “Make a careful exploration of who you are and the work you have been given, and then sink yourself into that.”
I love this passage because God is compelling us to understand how uniquely he has created us. Each of us have been given a unique set of gifts, talents, experiences and opportunities that have shaped us and equipped us to impact the world in ways that no one else can. But so often we get tripped up by the things we are not. We throw excuses at God for why we can’t: “I’m not smart enough. I’m not strong enough. I’m not eloquent enough. I don’t have the resources. I don’t have the privilege. I have too many other responsibilities.”
Mary said, “How can this be?” when the angel came to her. Leah lamented, “I am unloved.” Rachel exclaimed, “Give me children, or else I die!” Moses asked God, “Who am I that I should go?” and “What if they don’t believe me or listen to me?”
We all have excuses or reasons for why we can’t be who God is calling us to be, but when we throw aside the excuses we begin to see what it looks like to “sink” ourselves into the influence God has designed us for.
You are specifically designed to impact the world in a way that no one else can. You have a specific purpose, a calling, that only you are qualified to fulfill. Your God-given influence defines your purpose. Your purpose establishes your leadership. Your leadership makes a mark on the world.
What gift, talent, experience, or opportunity has God given you that you need to explore more? What have you been holding back? God’s picture isn’t complete without each of us living our creative best. We need you to give all you’ve got. I’m better when you’re better. You’re better when I’m better. We’re all better together. Let’s discover and unleash our God-given influence!
Jenni Catron is the author of Clout: Discover and Unleash Your God-Given Influence (Thomas Nelson 2014). Her passion is to lead well and to inspire, equip and encourage others to do the same. Jenni served for nine years as the Executive Director of Cross Point Church in Nashville, TN. She also speaks at conferences and churches nationwide, seeking to help others develop their leadership gifts and lead confidently. Jenni blogs at www.JenniCatron.com and contributes to a number of other online publications as well. For more information on Clout, go to www.DiscoverClout.com.