"For in Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form, and you have been given fullness in Christ, who is the head over every power and authority." Colossians 2:9-10 (NIV 1984)
They were laughing in their matching neon pink t-shirts with the words "Bethany's Birthday Girls" printed on the front. They were going bowling after school. Then to get pizza. Then a sleep over.
When Bethany passed out the shirts that morning I pretended to be too busy to notice. I stayed hyper focused on unpacking my book bag into my locker. And then I hurried off to my first class.
It was clear. Bethany had made a list of her friends and I hadn't been included.
I thought I would be. We'd gotten together before. I'd invited her to my pool party.
"No big deal," I tried to tell myself all day. I had plans that night too.
To sit at home. Alone. And wonder why I hadn't been chosen.
It's been years since I watched those neon pink shirts all pile into a station wagon after school and drive away.
But it hasn't been years since I've heard the negative inside chatter that ensued afterwards.
"You're not liked."
"You weren't invited."
"You weren't chosen."
Here's what I wish I could have told my little non-wearing pink t-shirt self back then ... and what I need to remember when those same feelings creep in today ...
Don't put the whole of your identity into the smallness of this situation.
Not getting a pink t-shirt that day felt like a defining moment. And maybe it was for that day. I wasn't invited to Bethany's party. And that stunk.
But it wasn't a defining moment of my identity.
It was a moment. And moments shift. People are fickle. People shift.
In the moment Bethany made the list of who to invite to her party, I wasn't on the top of her mind. Not because she didn't like me, but simply because she hadn't thought about it.
It was a small situation.
And I can't put the whole of my identity into the smallness of this situation. Or any other for that matter.
My pastor used a verse in his sermon recently that echoes these same thoughts, "For in Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form, and you have been given fullness in Christ" (Colossians 2:9-10).
I have been given fullness. I am filled up by Christ. With acceptance. With love. With all the fullness of an identity that can't be shaken.
I can place the wholeness of my identity in that reality ... and see everything else as small in comparison.
Dear Lord, I praise You for Your faithfulness to me in every situation. I don't want to get hung up on the small things of this world. Please help me to place the wholeness of my identity in who You are and the everlasting acceptance that You provide. In Jesus' Name, Amen.
Related Resources: If you have a daughter or know another young woman who might need encouragement for her walk with the Lord, Lysa TerKeurst's book What Happens When Young Women Say Yes to God would be a perfect gift. Click here to pre-order your copy.
Reflect and Respond: What past hurt are you still processing that seemed like a defining moment in your life?
Reflect on our key verse and power verses. Write them down in a place where you'll see them every day. This will help you remember what God says we are to Him – His beloved children who have been saved through His grace.
Power Verses: Ephesians 2:4-5, "But because of His great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved." (NIV)
John 1:12-13, Yet to all who did receive Him, to those who believed in His name, He gave the right to become children of God — children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband's will, but born of God." (NIV)
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