Pushing my desk from the middle of fun to the front of failure was just one more step in my journey. I’m sure somewhere on the planet, having your desk next to the teacher’s is some kind of honor, but in 6th grade in Mr. Lovegren’s class, it was anything but. Believing this move would finally be the trick to cure my out-of-control mouth, giving my desk this new location was his one last effort. I’m sure he was exasperated. Just more confirmation of the truth on my report cards, “Lynn needs to stop talking.
I began to see, the loud girl in me as a determent. I had to get rid of her, overcome the sigma. Boldness wasn’t something to embrace, be proud of or even a trait to be sharpened into something good. No, it was a flaw to purge, or so they wanted me to believe.
I still see that dark-haired girl, wishing so badly she could change and be like the more “put together” girls. I want to scoop her in my arms and tell her, “Loud isn’t a dirty word. Your boldness, your voice, your desire to share with others; it is a gift. Not something to detest, but a trait to be honed.”
1 Corinthians 7:7b says, “… But each has his own gift from God; one has this gift, another has that.” (NIV)
I love how God has told us, each has his own gift. Each of us; not one of us has He left out. Not one of us has He forgotten. God has given each of us gifts and His gifts are good! (James 1:17)
Do we see our gifts the way He sees our gifts? Are we recognizing the unique trait He has worked into our lives for His purposes?
Here’s where insecurity slides in; when we don’t see ourselves as God sees us. We listen to the voices that call our gifts the opposite of what God calls our gifts.
We see determents.
Yes, God has work to do in us before He can do work through us. But while He is busy, honing our rough edges, getting us ready to use His gifts, we have to do our part.
Secret #3: Fan the flame.
2 Timothy 1:6 gives us God’s wisdom on how to move out of insecurity and into the place where our gifts bring His good:
“For this reason I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you through the laying on of my hands.” Paul goes on to say, “For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline” (2 Timothy 1:7).
Stomping insecurity and moving into God’s confidence doesn’t just happen. Look again at the instructions Paul is giving to move past insecurity: you fan into flame. You! God has placed His spirit, His spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline (yes, even self-discipline) into you. Now you move!
Stop calling out your short comings and start fanning your flame. Use the power, love and self-discipline He is pouring into you, by His spirit to be used by God.
Take a moment and think of that thing in you that has been labeled as “bad”. Ask God, “Could this actually be a gift in me?” Ask Him for your next step; how does He want you to begin fanning this gift into His flame to light up your world.