“Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex! Your workmanship is marvelous—how well I know it.” (Psalm 139:14 NLT)
Once you understand your shape, it explains how you respond to authority, how you handle criticism, how you deal with confrontation, how you make friends, how you deal with guilt, why you get close to people or why you don't get close to people. Your shape explains what makes you mad, sad, worried, happy — because it's you!
There are four benefits of discovering and building your life around your “S.H.A.P.E.” (your spiritual gifts, heart, abilities, personality, and experiences):
1. It reduces stress. When you are confident in how you are shaped, you stop comparing yourself to other people. Instead, you build on your strengths, recognize your limitations, maximize what you're good at, and don't worry about the rest. It's a guaranteed stress reducer!
2. It increases success. Success is not making a lot of money; it’s knowing God's will and being right in the center of it. It’s being what God meant you to be. It's figuring out who you are and then being you!
3. It deepens satisfaction. A satisfying life is when you are doing what you're shaped to do. Freedom comes from doing what you're gifted to do and enjoying what God made you to be. When you build your life on God’s shape for you, you feel the love of God a whole lot more because you're in harmony with his plan.
4. It builds self-esteem. There's an epidemic of low self-esteem in our society today. Studies say that over 50 percent of people are in the wrong jobs. I believe that genuine self-esteem is not built on positive thinking but on two biblical truths: First, you matter to God and, second, you were shaped by God for a purpose.
Talk About It
Once you know your shape, spend some time evaluating how your time is spent. Are you pursuing activities or goals that God specifically shaped you to do?
Would you say that you have a satisfying life? What is your satisfaction or contentment based on?
Rick Warren is the founding pastor of Saddleback Church in Lake Forest, Calif., one of America's largest and most influential churches. Rick is author of the New York Times bestseller "The Purpose Driven Life." His book, "The Purpose Driven Church," was named one of the 100 Christian books that changed the 20th century. He is also the founder of Pastors.com, a global Internet community for pastors.
This devotional ©2012 by Rick Warren. All rights reserved. Used by permission.