My, Devotion to Him #306
Do you ever feel alone, undesirable or unloved? Were you always the last one to be picked for a team in gym class? What about feeling left out and unworthy. Maybe you thought something was wrong with you. There was that dreadful feeling that you just weren’t good, and everyone knew it. Me too.
In school, I was never the most popular. I did have popular friends, but I also had friends that weren’t. Somehow I always stayed in the middle. In gym class, when we had to form teams, and you had team captains picking for their side, I was always one of the last ones. I hated it. Oh, the apprehension and anxiety I had. I wondered why? What was wrong with me? It definitely makes you feel like no one wants you. Then when it’s down to just a couple people, you feel like they have to pick you because they have no choice. It absolutely doesn’t build your self-esteem. Even as an adult, I have experienced this. For example, our church had a get-together and was doing a co-ed softball game. So naturally, they picked two team captains who, in turn, picked their teams. As usual, I was one of the last to be chosen. The funny thing was I’ve played softball most of my life, and I’m not too bad at it. Nobody knew it until we started to play, and then they could tell. Even at that, it didn’t make me feel any better. The past feelings and experiences were still there. The feeling of being unwanted and unworthy was there.
Feeling unwanted and alone, the last resort, can cut deep and leave scars. To never be asked to hang out, go have lunch, or watch a movie hurts. I get it. I was usually hard enough on myself about being no good, and then experiencing all this just added fuel to the fire. It was validation of what I already felt about myself. As most of us are, I was my worst critic, and they just solidified it.
But, God. Something in those two words stands the test of time throughout my life and even throughout the Bible. You see, I didn’t grow up in a Godly home or go to church. It wasn’t until I met my husband that I learned about Jesus. All those years of talking down on myself, feeling unworthy and shame, Jesus saved me from it all. I had now found someone who knew me better than I knew myself. He knew ALL my failures, the bad choices, the deep-down secrets, and you know what? He still chose me! He loves me unconditionally. He died for me, took my sins, and put my shame upon Himself. Why? Because of love.
Verse Passage: Deuteronomy 31:8 “It is the LORD who goes before you. He will be with you; he will not leave you or forsake you. Do not fear or be dismayed.” – ESV
The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave or forsake you. Do not be afraid, do not be discouraged.
This love would ultimately rock my world. I was grateful. But so many times, I kept asking why would you love me? A lot of the time, I felt unworthy, undeserving, and ashamed. Thankfully, we were already a part of a great church. The pastor would preach about forgiving ourselves and that we needed to speak over ourselves what God says about us. So I started doing that on a daily basis, even though I felt silly. Then months later, God spoke to me about attending the prayer group. What! Oh, surely not. I don’t know how to pray like them, and I will look like a fool. But I listened. Wow! these people were courageous. It ended up being one of the best things for me. I started to speak over myself even more as a result: I’m the head and not the tail, blessed and not cursed, favored, loved, the apple of God’s eye, redeemed, beautiful, worthy, forgiven, and most of all, I am loved.
God is your biggest cheerleader. He wants the very best for you. There’s never a time that He isn’t there for you. I’ve been saved for 21 years now and can’t imagine life without Him. I probably wouldn’t have stayed married and my kids…..who knows. But God! He’s been my foundation through all the heartaches and trials we’ve gone through. He’s my center.
Verse Passage: Deuteronomy 4:31 “For the LORD your God is a merciful God. He will not leave you or destroy you or forget the covenant with your fathers that he swore to them.” – ESV
Verse Passage: Romans 10:8-9 “But what does it say? “The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart” (that is, the word of faith that we proclaim); because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.” – ESV
If you don’t know Jesus, I encourage you to seek Him today. He’s the confidence builder and shame-taker. One of the most profound things for me was Psalms 139. In a nutshell, it’s like this, God knew me before I was even born. Jesus looked ahead to the day I got saved and knew I would need a Savior, so He died for me. God knows all of me: faults, failures, strengths, what makes me happy, how to deal with me, and he still loves me even on my worst days. Who in your life loves you like that? Never condemns you. Never reminds you of who you used to be or every time you fall. But is there to pick you up, dust you off, and says try again. I got you.
God wants an inseparable intimate relationship with you. He’s not asking you to be perfect because we can’t. We come as we are first. He does the changing of our hearts and mind. But, of course, we have to do our part too. He wants to love you, give you the best, strengthen you, and watch you soar!
You may have been picked last your entire life. But none of that matters when you have an encounter with Jesus Christ. Because you will find that he is absolutely interested in you! He wants you. He longs to talk with you. He picks you. Not out of pity or because he’s forced to. No! He picks you because you are precisely the one he wants.
Copyright © 2022 by Shannon Olinger
Published by SpiritWarriorMinistry.com per the agreement between SpiritWarriorMinistry.com and author Shannon Olinger. The work has been reviewed and deemed in line with SpiritWarriorMinistry’s faith and vision.