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Finding Beauty in our Ashes

We all have different personalities and quirks. God has made us unique individuals with a need for a divine intervention. We weren't designed to be perfect. We all come with a list of things we need to overcome. Those natural tendencies that at best, can be irritating, even to ourselves, need to be evaluated, curved and controlled.

I'm thinking about this right now because I've had a good dose of my own personality quirks as we've been under the gun these past few weeks, packing, moving and now getting everything put together in this apartment. I realize how much I obsess over

things. I like things to be clean and in order at ALL times... even while I'm moving. My husband tried to help me by pulling everything out of the kitchen cabinets... yeah...I can't work that way. That's chaotic and I like peace and perfect order. Lol! I guess we all know that perfect order at all times can't be achieved, but that's how I'm wired. I also have a tendency to research things to death! I want to know I'm getting the best deal at the best price for the best product.

There's so many strange things about our personalities. Though I'm talking about myself...even I think these habits are peculiar. The important thing is not allowing our peculiarities to affect our relationships. That's a hard one. We may think that our way is the only right way and believe that anyone who doesn't do it or see things the way we do is wrong. It's not the only right way, it's just how we like things done. You see when God designed our personalities it was for a good purpose. Along with the hang ups that come with this package, there's also a good side to wanting things in order and doing research. I love to search out the hidden things of God's Spirit...I obsess, if you will, over the marvelous things of God. If I didn't have organizational skills I couldn't do the work I do or have a clean house for my husband to come home to, which he happens to love.

In each person we come in contact with or maybe even live with, there will be things about them that we just can't understand and it may even be quite frustrating. Begin to realize that they are a product of God's creation. What may seem like a personality flaw in one area may be their greatest strength. A leadership gift for example can make a person seem bossy or overbearing, but in the midst of what seems like a weakness is an incredible strength. The hard part is learning to get along with all personalities.

Search your heart and be perfectly honest with yourself. What is it about you that would be an irritation if you were on the outside looking in? Ask God to help you to change and mold those irritating habits while maintaining the precious gift He's given you. Find those strengths and use them for His glory!

Now, begin to look at those around you with the eyes of the Spirit. Not a judgmental attitude, pointing out those irritating qualities. Ask yourself why did God design them the way He did and find their strengths. Even point them out to them. Encourage them in the beauty of their intricacies. A little positive reinforcement can go a long way.

Psalm 139:14-17 (NLT) Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex! Your workmanship is marvelous—how well I know it. You watched me as I was being formed in utter seclusion, as I was woven together in the dark of the womb. You saw me before I was born. Every day of my life was recorded in your book. Every moment was laid out before a single day had passed. How precious are your thoughts about me, O God. They cannot be numbered!

Romans 14:10-13 (NLT) So why do you condemn another believer? Why do you look down on another believer? Remember, we will all stand before the judgment seat of God. For the Scriptures say. “‘As surely as I live,’ says the Lord ‘every knee will bend to me and every tongue will declare allegiance to God.” Yes, each of us will give a personal account to God. So let’s stop condemning each other. Decide instead to live in such a way that you will not cause another believer to stumble and fall.

Matthew 7:3-5 (NLT) “And why worry about a speck in your friend’s eye when you have a log in your own? How can you think of saying to your friend, ‘Let me help you get rid of that speck in your eye,’ when you can’t see past the log in your own eye? Hypocrite! First get rid of the log in your own eye; then you will see well enough to deal with the speck in your friend’s eye.

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