Accept one another, then, just as Christ accepted you, in order to bring praise to God.
Romans 15:7 – NIV
I am always amazed when I hear highly successful people share their experiences of people not believing in their ability to accomplish their dreams. It is all too common for people to tear each other down instead of build each other up. How often have you heard of people who have been chasing the approval of someone who has denied them that their entire life whether it’s a father figure, a coach or someone else? They are determined to prove themselves.
I love a good underdog story as much as anyone else. I think what makes the story so appealing is that at some point we have all felt like an underdog. We have felt like the world was against us. That people didn’t believe in our dreams. Or that people flat out told us we couldn’t.
We are hard wired in our culture to prove ourselves. It is ingrained in us. In school we are graded. At work we are evaluated. We are assigned a salary that reflects our value to the company. We post to social media hoping for likes.
I am not saying there is anything wrong with all of this. Just that we constantly look for the feedback and affirmations that we are on the right track or doing life well. But. In Christ we have nothing to prove.
Romans 15:7 tell us Christ accepts us. He. Accepts. Us. Just. As. We. Are.
I am a high achiever. No one expects more from me than I do that of myself. Maybe you can relate? Diving into the ministry of speaking and writing has been one of the most ambiguous things I have ever done. I don’t always see the impact of what I do or the time I invest. I don’t always have tangible feedback telling me I am on the right path or doing well. And there are days when I think – am I making a difference? Is this a good use of my time?
This week I was wrestling with these feelings when God showed me – I have nothing to prove. He reminded me that I set out in 2019 to be confident and to trust that outcomes are entirely in his court, not mine. That I may not see the outcome, but it doesn’t mean he isn’t using my humble offerings. Then he graciously gave me the feedback of five women whose lives were being changed and encouraged by what little I had done. So humbling. All I had done was obey and offer my talents. The impact was made by God using those talents to speak into the hearts and lives of others.
I may never know exactly who is encouraged or challenged by what I share when I speak or write, but I know that with God nothing is wasted. I trust that when I obey and do what he has called me to do, he will use it to accomplish what he has set out to do. I do not need the proof that I am being used. I do not need to prove myself.
My dear friend Erica Wiggenhorn said it another way in her DVD teaching series for Unexplainable Jesus – Who Do You Think You Are? The heart of her message was the same though – in Christ we have nothing to prove. She referenced Luke 20:1-4 when the chief priests and religious leaders questioned Jesus’ authority. Jesus didn’t feel the need to prove himself. He knew who he was, to whom he belonged (God) and what he was doing. He simply referenced John the Baptist’s baptism and in doing so indirectly implied – who does God say I am?
Who does God say Jesus is?
“You are my Son, whom I love; with you I am well pleased.”
Luke 3:22 NIV
And this is what God says of us –
“You Are my daughter, whom I love; with you I am well pleased.”
We have nothing to prove, because God loves us.
We have nothing to prove, because God accepts us.
We have nothing to prove, because God is pleased with us.
Let’s go forth in the freedom and confidence that we have nothing to prove, because – we are God’s daughters and sons, whom he loves; with whom he is well pleased!