A few things I hope you know today.
First of all, I hope you know God loves you. And He doesn’t love you because of the good things you did yesterday or the promises of the good things you plan to do tomorrow. God loves you because He made you. There is nothing you can do to make it so He didn’t make you, and therefore, His love for you is final. It is absolute. And it is never going away.
Secondly, I hope you know that God made you for a reason. He gave you a unique combination of talents, abilities, spiritual gifts, opportunities and personality traits. Though other people may have better abilities than you, the combination of things that make up you is utterly unique in all of humanity. There never has been and never will be anyone exactly like you. As I told a kid named Keith this summer, when God was looking at the world, He said to Himself, “I want a Keith”. He wanted a you and he made you. You aren’t a joke and you aren’t an accident.
Thirdly, God can do everything you can do faster and better than you can do it. The purpose that God gave your life is for your benefit, not His. In other words, God gave us our talents and abilities and spiritual gifts and opportunities and personality traits so we can combine them and do something meaningful with them because doing something meaningful with what God has given us gives us joy and brings God glory. We don’t have to look at the guy to our right and get down because he’s doing what we’re doing better than we can do it. If God cared about that, God would just do it Himself. But it’s more than results. Living the life God made for us brings us freedom and joy, because He is God and He knows how life works best.
Fourthly, I hope you know how to pray. All my life I thought prayer was primarily about asking God for stuff and because of that I hated to pray because I hate asking anybody for anything. But as I have slowed down, I’ve prayed more and more that instead of God giving me stuff, He would just give me Him. I hope you know that you can go to God when you don’t even know what to say. I hope you know that you can pray to God even in the seconds after messing up one more time. I hope you know how to pray because God is close. He is not far away.