I was thinking last night about the idea of potential. Reflecting upon my dreams and aspirations and the potential I have to be able to reach them and an idea crossed my mind which I wanted to share in a blog post here.
We all have a lot of potential, we all have dreams and goals and natural talents. Some of us seem to live up to that potential better than others. We look up to the Michael Jordans of sport or the Charles Dickens of literature and the Beyonces of the music world and go 'there's someone living out their potential at the top of their game.' But here's a thought that challenged me: are they really?
What were we all made to do? Let me bring up two scriptures. Firstly Colossians 1:16 "16 For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him." This verse points out that EVERYTHING, not just somethings or almost everything, but EVERYTHING was made for Jesus - for God to enjoy. And if we go back to the very beginning in 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." We were made in the image of God, for God.
If we go another step and move on to another verse in Ephesians 2:20 it state that "For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them." So here's the challenging thought: living up to our potential is not about living up to the possibility of what our natural gifts can do. Or rather it is not only about living up to the full possibility of what our natural gifts can do.
It's for this reason that I admire people like Gary Ablett Jr. He's potentially one of the top five best AFL players of all time if not the very best due to living up to his full natural athletic ability. Yet, it's not just his natural talent that causes him to be so inspirational. It is how he openly worships God by displaying his faith through leading his teammates in prayer before games and not hiding the fact that Jesus is a key part of his life.
My reflection is this; we all have within us the potential to change the world in some way and make a difference eternally. We might not all be able to fully live up to our physical or intellectual potential due to certain roadblocks, but we can live up to the potential God implants in our life through the connect between grace and faith. I linked to the following article on Facebook yesterday: http://www.faithit.com/why-shia-lebeoufs-faith-might-not-look-like-yours/ which really explains and challenges the idea of how grace does a different work in every person.
I would like to take that statement about grace further and state this: only through God's grace can you reach your full potential. I don't know if anyone I don't know reads these posts or whether any non-Christians do but I would love to challenge you if you do not know Jesus to see that his grace is there to help you live a life of true God-given potential. For those who do know Jesus here is the new challenge: to start living up to that potential. It's easily said but harder done but you know what, I want to start that and continue everyday - getting that little bit closer with every step.