“Happy Happy Joy Joy, it’s the first of the month again…”

“God forbid that I should boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world.” – Galatians 6:14

Who am I?  For many years, my identity and intrinsic value was dependent on a very simple object: an 8 1/2 x 11″ piece of paper known as the “Sales Blotter.”  What is a sales blotter you may ask, and how could it hold so much power over me?  Well, a sales blotter is a report that was issued monthly to the officers of my institution to make public either our successes or our lack of.

For 15 years, I was a commissioned sales person in the financial services industry.  And each month, the sales blotter was distributed to all my fellow salespeople just so everyone knew where we all stood.  The sales blotter carried much power because, for me, it not only showed how much money I made (my primary objective in life,) but it also showed how important I was to the company.  For example:  On the top = very valuable, on the bottom = on my way out the door.

For someone who didn’t know Christ, and didn’t know the intrinsic value of my soul, this sales blotter gave my life meaning.  And in the same fashion, I gave my life back to it.  It didn’t take me long to figure out how to stay on top most of the time, and that my value would be affirmed each month/year that I remained so.  For years, everything I did revolved around this object with which I shared a love/hate relationship.  I loved it when I was successful.  But yet I hated it when it pointed out my failures.  It was the strongest motivator in my life, and I always felt a rush of excitement at the first of the month as we waited for it to be issued.

Maybe some of you live in the same way.  Maybe a sales blotter is the center of your world, or maybe it’s something different – like your car or where you live or your title.  I can tell you that this: is an unfulfilled life.  Because, allowing an object to define you gets tiring after a while.  There is never any security there, and eventually you find yourself seeking more and more “things” to make you feel good about yourself.  It is the ultimate form of idolatry and, in time, it will do damage to your soul.

That is why I am so grateful for my Lord and Savior.  I may be no better a Christian than I was 12 years ago when He found me, but there is one thing about me that has changed.  I know who I am and I know whose I am.  There is nothing that can tear me away from the love of the Father, and my value is not based upon my performance.  It is constant and unchanging.

I have a peace now that I never had before.  I am content in where I am, and the things of this world don’t matter so much any more.  I invite you to spend some time this weekend considering this question:  

“What makes me feel good about myself?” or “What is it that makes me feel valuable?”

If you find an answer that is anything other than Jesus, then I pray that you will begin seeking Him and allowing Him to replace those false securities in your life.  The peace of the Lord surpasses all our understandings.  And it brings new life as well.

Shalom brothers and sisters.

Mighty Jehovah,

You are the great I AM, who was, is, and evermore shall be.  You are the Alpha and Omega, my beginning and my end.  Create in me, O Lord, and understanding of my infinite value in You.  Give me the discernment to recognize false gods in my life, and the strength to remove them.  Teach me who I am, and lead me to the peace that only Your presence can provide.  Help me to turn away from the things of this world, that surely exist to pull me away from You.

In the name of my Savior I pray,

Amen 

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