BY LEANN DILBECK –
There are many staples in a self-respecting southerner’s closet and among them is camouflage. Regardless of whether you actually pull the trigger as a hunter, because, after all, it’s not always about practicality or necessity, but an actual fashion statement for others. And it’s not just your run of the mill GI Joe camo anymore. Oh, no! There’s camo for all conditions. There’s Advantage, Mossy Oak, Realtree and more who each have their own gazillion patterns to fit literally any outside backdrop imaginable. All designed with making you unrecognizable to the naked untrained eye.
Do you somehow feel as if your “purpose in life” is camouflaged? Hidden from your sight? I’ve focused the last two weeks on the word purpose and God continues to reveal so much about that one simple word to me. In examples in my own life but also through other’s stories that have been shared with me. Some, from today’s servants in ministry, who felt a calling… and ran and hid from it… but eventually surrendered to do what they felt completely inept to do. Others who question some of life’s valleys but the majority are anxious about what the world holds for 2016 and what can we, as one small person, do about it?
God’s blessings AND purposes for our lives can, many times, be camoed as hardships and painful life lessons. It’s not unless and until our eyes and hearts become so focused on Him that He can gradually reveal to us what He has for us. All of a sudden, within a dark, heavily wooded thicket, we see it… as if a beacon from Heaven was shining on it so we can finally see it… with our own two eyes. How did I miss that before? we wonder. It’s about God’s timing and it’s about having our hearts ready for the greatness of what He’s holding for us. It’s about our willingness to see His purpose and His plan. Proverbs 19:21 – “Many are the PLANS in a person’s heart, but it is the Lord’s PURPOSE that prevails.”
When He reveals it to us and we openly surrender to what He has called us to, we, ourselves, can’t be camoed either… trying to blend in. Especially in times such as these, it’s never been anymore important to be set apart from the world’s standards that, most times, do not reflect God’s principles. 2 Corinthians 6:17 – “Therefore, ‘Come out from them and be separate,’ says the Lord.” We’ve all been guilty, at one or another, of making excuses… digging deep to find an excuse to not do the right thing… making excuses to not do what we know deep down in our hearts that He is moving us to do. We have to make a conscience choice… just ask Nick Vujicic who has every excuse to stay in and allow the world to care for him. Nick was born with no arms or legs. “Often people ask how I manage to be happy despite having no arms and no legs. The quick answer is that I have a choice. I can be angry about not having limbs, or I can be thankful that I have a purpose. I chose gratitude.”
The early days were difficult for Nick. Throughout his childhood, Nick not only dealt with the typical challenges of school and adolescence, but he also struggled with depression and loneliness. Nick constantly wondered why he was different than all the other kids. He questioned the purpose of life, or if he even had a purpose.
According to Nick, the victory over his struggles, as well as his strength and passion for life today, can be credited to his faith in God. His family, friends and the many people he has encountered along the journey have inspired him to carry on, as well.
Since his first speaking engagement at age 19, Nick has traveled around the world, sharing his story with millions, sometimes in stadiums filled to capacity, speaking to a range of diverse groups such as students, teachers, young people, business professionals and church congregations of all sizes. Today this dynamic young evangelist has accomplished more than most people achieve in a lifetime. He’s an author, musician, actor, and his hobbies include fishing, painting and swimming. In 2007, Nick made the long journey from Australia to southern California where he is the president of the international non-profit ministry, Life Without Limbs, which was established in 2005.
Nick says, “If God can use a man without arms and legs to be His hands and feet, then He will certainly use any willing heart!” Nick’s latest foray into radio will expand his platform for inviting men and women all around the world to embrace the liberating hope and message of Jesus Christ.
Nick embraced His purpose and a testimony was born from what many would have considered a restrictive condition. We all have a testimony and we all have opportunities to share a living God with a dying world.