Bible Society of South Africa
Benescke Janse van Rensburg

New hope (Part 2) – Day 14

New hope … knowing that you are good enough

Bible text(s)

8Do not be like them. Your Father already knows what you need before you ask him.

Matthew 6:8GNBOpen in Bible reader

5“I chose you before I gave you life, and before you were born I selected you to be a prophet to the nations.”

Jeremiah 1:5GNBOpen in Bible reader

19He does not take the side of rulers

nor favour the rich against the poor,

for he created everyone.

7Even the hairs of your head have all been counted. So do not be afraid; you are worth much more than many sparrows!

I regularly get e-mails from readers who confess they are struggling with a poor self-esteem or an inferiority complex. Here are two examples of these e-mails:

Reader 1: “Ever since I can remember, I struggled with rejection in my life. The older I become, the worse it gets. Please help!”
Reader 2: “How can I learn to love myself? After the birth of my son, I started struggling with my weight and body image. I really feel bad about myself. Do you have any advice?”

Radio Tygerberg had launched a project in which listeners could nominate the special person in their lives, who we then would go and surprise at their workplace. The text messages streamed in and we identified a few listeners – including a 9-year-old boy from Durbanville, who asked us to surprise his fellow classmate, the “beautiful Layla”, as he described her, at their school.

We sent out our team to their school with red balloons, flowers and chocolates. As part of the project, we phone our field presenter from the studio and speak to the person who got the surprise, to get their reaction. Arriving at the boy’s school in Durbanville, his parents and Layla’s parents excitedly waited outside the classroom. On the inside, Layla sat, totally unaware of what awaited her. With the presentation of the gifts and the talk on the radio, it was clear that she was totally overwhelmed. The boy stood with a broad smile and the rest of their classmates admitted they wished they were the ones receiving the surprise.

After all the excitement, Layla’s mother, with tears in her eyes, told our field presenter that God is really good. A week before, she and her daughter drove together in the car when Layla suddenly said to her mother that she does not feel special at all, and that no one ever does anything to make her feel special. We had no knowledge of this before our visit. God, however, did hear Layla’s words and he chose to use us to demonstrate his love to her, and to make her feel special. This event reminded me of the words in Matthew 6:8: “… your Father knows exactly what you need even before you ask him!”

Conditions, actions or words of people or traumatic incidents may, at times, strip us of our self-confidence or make us feel inferior. The enemy loves it, because he knows it makes us passive and even depressed. God, however, has as many thoughts about each of us as the number of sand grains of the sea (Psalm 139). Listen again to the promises of his word:

Jeremiah 1:5: “I knew you before I formed you in your mother’s womb. Before you were born I set you apart and appointed you as my prophet to the nations.”

Job 34:19: He (God) shows no partiality to princes and does not favour the rich over the poor, for they are all the work of his hands.

Luke 12:7: “And the very hairs on your head are all numbered. So don’t be afraid; you are more valuable to God than a whole flock of sparrows.”

Do you feel like Layla; as if everyone has forgotten about you? Or do you struggle with rejection like Reader 1 or like Reader 2, to accept yourself due to your outward appearance? Remind yourself that your name is engraved in the palm of God’s hand. He knows how many hairs are on your head and his plans for your life include prosperity and not adversity. Let us keep our eyes open today to see what God is busy doing. He sometimes demonstrates his love to us in the strangest ways, to confirm that he does think we are special. God bless.

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