Have you strived your entire life to be somebody important? Or for you younger folks, is that your career or life’s goal? If so, how do you measure importance…what accomplishments or achievements make you the somebody you hope to be???
Our culture drives us to be valued, important, successful, and achieve incredible things to show our value to our friends, family, our employer, our school, city, state, or country. But is that really what’s important and where and when does the collection of achievements become enough? Or is it never enough - we must keep driving to accomplish all we can to build a “LEGACY,” worthy of our name?
Let me tell you about my friend William. William was an only child whose parents were wildly successful in society’s eyes. They were on several boards doing good for many causes. They were leaders in the church and various educational institutions, achieving 6 college degrees amongst them. An achievement of which they were the only ones of their 6 siblings, and 4 parents to even attempt, let alone achieve.
William was driven to be like his parents. He excelled in school. He was a leader in band, a four sport star athlete where he still holds 7 school records. He was President of student council and the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, and he wrote for the school paper and yearbook. After so many years in his parents’ spotlight, as an only child, he was finally somebody.
He went onto college where his somebody status was no longer. He struggled with school and quit. He was no longer somebody.
He entered the business world where in just three short years he would be promoted three times and set several business records – He was somebody again. However, mentally and spiritually, he never really felt that successful and continued to drive towards these culture driven achievements.
He got married and began raising a family – again he was somebody important to his family. But those same feelings of I’m somebody but I don’t feel like it, persisted.
Eight more jobs of achieving some major and some minor successes followed, and eight more times he often achieved that feeling that he was somebody, yet the empty feelings persisted. William returned to college and got his bachelor’s degree, graduating Magna Cum Laude - he was somebody again. Even with this monumental commitment to return to get his degree, and accomplish it with such a high rating, the emptiness still haunted him.
Along the way, William’s wife, Claire, convinced him that he needed to return to church. That possibly the feelings of emptiness could, or would, go away if he was active in the church. You see William had been raised in the church and always felt a love and dedication to Jesus and God, but he thought maybe the wife was onto something.
He attended three different churches where he volunteered to serve and was warmly welcomed – He felt he was somebody again. Then within a 16-week span, he lost both parents and not one member of these supportive churches did anything to reach out to him and offer him comfort or condolences. He now truly felt that he was no longer somebody and he doubted if he ever again would be somebody.
William felt alone and that he was no longer somebody, or anybody, for that matter!
You see, William had been missing the point all along. He was trying to serve society and our culture. He was measuring his worldly deeds as personal accomplishments. Even though he mostly lived a good, clean, honest, and structured life, doing good at every turn, he badly missed the one and only thing that could truly make him somebody.
What’s ironic is that he was raised in a Christian church but did not get it. He returned to several Christian churches and still did not get it.
William was already somebody and always had been. He didn’t understand his Lord and Savior the way he should have. He hadn’t been trying to walk with, and talk with, the Lord. All the angst, struggles, hard work, and drive for personal achievements were meaningless as they did nothing to embrace God’s true love and grace.
What William was missing all along was a relationship with God. If he would have daily sought to have such a relationship, he would have known that he was always somebody in God’s eyes. He would have learned what Matthew wrote, that we can rest assured that God knows us personally as His children.
Matthew 10:29-31 "Are not two sparrows sold for a copper coin? And not one of them falls to the ground apart from your father’s will. 30- But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. 31- Do not fear therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows."
All of us are somebody when we are born to and created by God. We simply need to understand this and live this throughout our lives. We will know this by having a relationship with Jesus and God. Spending time with them daily will truly give you that sense of being somebody, each moment, of each day.
William has finally learned this and is walking with God today. TODAY AND EVERYDAY HE NOW REALIZES…HE IS SOMEBODY!!! He recently told me, that had he truly understood the following Bible verses, he probably would have realized his importance to God, himself, and his family and friends, from the very beginning. I share these verses with you in hopes that you too will realize you have always been somebody through Christ our Lord!!!
1. John 3:14-18 “Just as Moses lifted up the snake in the wilderness, so the Son of Man must be lifted up, that everyone who believes may have eternal life in him.” For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because they have not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son.”
2. Jeremiah 1:5- “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born, I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations.”
3. Genesis 1:27- "So God created man in His own image; in the image of God, He created him; male and female He created them."
4. Ephesians 5:2- "And walk in love, as Christ also has loved us and given Himself for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling aroma."
5. 1 John 4:10-12 - " This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins. Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us."
6. Psalm 139:16- “Your eyes saw my unformed body; all my days were written in Your book and ordained for me before one of them came to be.”