After we realize and embrace the way our Creator works in deliberate, beautiful, and intricate designs, then we can turn and look at ourselves. We can direct the telescope back at ourselves and discover our true identities. We can realize how we’re made to accomplish His purposes. “For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do” (Ephesians 2:10).
To make this discovery and live in light of it, you must gravitate to your strengths. Donald O. Clifton, in his book Living Your Strengths, says from a very young age we are taught to be “well rounded.” Our ticket to our teachers’ approval is to soften our sharp edges, to become smooth and well rounded. According to Clifton, however, what we’re often taught is how to become as dull as we can possibly be. We’re taught to play it safe, to be compliant, to follow convention and tradition, to color inside the lines and to stay inside the box.
God never meant for us to be well rounded. He has gifted each of us uniquely, and no one has all the talent, no matter how it might appear. We’re to focus on what we’re good at and let go of what we’re not good at. I am not a good singer—just ask anyone who knows me! I could spend all my time taking voice lessons and auditioning for American Idol, but I would only go from bad to lousy. Instead I’ve focused on the key areas in which God has gifted me, and I’ve tried to develop them. I’m always working at being a better writer and communicator. It’s an insult to God when we focus on the gifts and passions we don’t have and try to develop only our weak areas. Our greatest potential lies in the areas of our greatest strengths. — One Month to Live: Thirty Days to a No-Regrets Life by Kerry Shook, Chris Shook