I have a question for you today: What is good about you? Yes, that’s correct. It’s not a mistake. I meant to ask that.
If you’re anything like me, you tend to look for things that are not working about you so that you can fix them and become better. You want to ditch bad habits and form good ones. That’s good, we should be growing and getting better. In fact, that is one of the active ministries of the Holy Spirit – working in us to make us more like Christ.
But, you know, recently, I felt inspired to flip my search the other way around.
Instead of figuring out what part of myself I want to work on, I found myself the Holy Spirit, ‘What do you like about me?’ Of course, He knows things about me that I don’t know and He knows the potential He put in me for holiness and for His purpose, but I was asking about things like habits, mindsets, and inclinations. And I was asking much like in the way one would ask a friend or a spouse.
I honestly believe He wanted me to ask that question, because there are good things in me that He wants me to celebrate, acknowledge and be thankful for.
So, I thought I’d ask you, too: What is good about you? What are the things you like about yourself?
I think this is important because we need to remember that even though we’re all works in progress who are working out our salvation with fear and trembling, we are children of God. He has begun working in us since and we have made some progress.
We are not who we used to be. And apart from that, we have His seeds in us, His gifts, His glory. Things, talents he has blessed us with, parts of our personality that are positive.
We may not be perfect, but we are good. And we need to remind ourselves of that often. You need to remind yourself of the things that are good about you. The Bible says we should acknowledge the good things that are in us.
Philemon 1:6 says that: And I am praying that you will put into action the generosity that comes from your faith as you understand and experience all the good things we have in Christ.
The part that I’m interested in here is where it says we have ‘good things’ in Christ, while this particularly refers to our salvation from sin, hell, sickness, poverty and all the different forms of spiritual death, I believe that things like behaviours, gifts, skills are included there.
They are an application of that verse because every good thing in us is from God. Paul asks us: What do you have that you have not been given?
But why do we have the tendency to look at what is not working or what is not good? Why does that seem to be our default?
Perhaps we don’t want to seem proud? But it’s not pride to state the truth as long as we’re doing it to acknowledge God in our lives.
When Jesus came and said ‘I am the Way, the Truth and the Life’, that was a bold statement for someone to say in his day . We don’t realise how bold it was because we have known and had those verses for years. But in those days, no one talked like that. So, was He being proud for saying something so momentous? Of course not, He was just stating the truth.
So, when you say something like ‘I am great at discerning things’ or ‘I am an excellent cook’ or ‘I am an awesome father’ or ‘I am warm-hearted’ or ‘I am very hospitable’ or ‘I am great with kids’, would that be a lie?
No, it wouldn’t be. As long as we’re saying it in thanksgiving and giving the glory to God. Because indeed, all we have comes from Him.
Think about this for a second, even God would love to have us think of how good we are, how good He has made us. He’s a Father, and He wants us to know we are inherently good, especially because we have His nature.
We are His workmanship and He continues to work on us. But He has made good progress and it would be great for us to acknowledge that.
So, I want you to do two things today:
1. List 5 things about yourself that you like. Maybe you are a great writer, or good with children, or good at your job, or quick to learn new languages, or know how to let go of hurts. Make a list (feel free to do more than 5, but try for 5, at the least).
2. Thank God for each of these things in one by one. Because all good gifts are from Him. We have nothing good outside of Him.
When you do this, a couple of beautiful things will happen.
You will be more thankful to God, not just generally but for specific things now. You will appreciate yourself more and be less tempted to compare yourself or draw yourself short against other people.
You will see how far you have come, especially if it is something that’s a character improvement or character change. This will give you hope and strength for more. It will be ammunition for times when you need to remember how God is working in your life, what gifts He has given you and how awesome He has made you.
Always remember that there are good things in you that the Lord wants you to celebrate, acknowledge and be thankful for.
If you’d like to listen to this blog as a podcast episode, you can find it as the same topic on your favorite podcast player, or click here.
In the podcast episode, I mentioned the Healing Rhythms Series of the Wild at Heart Podcast (with John Eldredge).