Fearfully And Wonderfully Made
I will give thanks and praise to You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Wonderful are Your works, And my soul knows it very well.
Humility and confidence aren’t opposites. They are compatible traits of someone who realizes he or she has been “fearfully and wonderfully made” by God. Everything we are- all of our abilities, our intellects, our talents, our skills,and our capabilities- have been hardwired into our DNA by Almighty God or shaped by experiences He has orchestrated or allowed in our lives. Each of us, even the most self-doubting, is an amazing product created by the Master’s hand. We need to notice how He has crafted us so we maximize our efforts to fit His design.
But take careful note: We are His design, not our own. Yes, we are incredible creatures, but we can’t take credit. Even our discipline and desire to excel comes from God’s work in us. When we realize that God has made us who we are and we appreciate His creative genius, we more eagerly put our lives in His hands and say, “Lord, do whatever You want to do with me.”
That’s a prayer He’s happy to answer.
Pride is ugly and destructive. Actually, most people who appear proud are only covering up their insecurities. The powerful blend of humility and confidence enables us to appreciate our strengths and use them with excellence, but we recognize that we didn’t create those abilities. They are gifts from God. And that makes all the difference.
Man, made in the image of God, has a purpose to be in relationship to God, who is there. Man forgets his purpose and thus he forgets who he is and what life means.
The credit for a masterpiece whether art, or music or anything else that is created lies not with the masterpiece itself but in its creator. Psalm 139 attributes all that we are or can be to God who created us. What masterpiece we are. Some years ago in one of my college classes, I learned that scientists were attempting to create a device that could smell. They were somewhat successful and it could detect some smells but in comparison to the human nose that can not only detect smells but to also separate them into multiple categories it was really not a success at all. Or when we consider the function of our eyes that instantly process what we see and in split seconds translates and transfers it to our brains the images. Consider our brains that process at speeds that are amazing as they receive, process and respond to all the stimulates provided by our senses. No wonder the psalmist exclaims “I give thanks and praise to You; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made.”
When we view incredible works of art with wonder at the skill and details or hear a piece of music and listen to the clearness of each note as it is played by a skilled and talented musician, we often gaze in wonder or listen with rapture. Yet, the One who created such gifted people is also the One who created us. We, too, are fearfully and wonderfully made by the very same artist.
When we see that all we are and all of our talents, skills, and abilities are truly gifts from God, we become liberated. No longer are we jealous of someone else’s achievements for we know that it was God who gave them the means to accomplish those things. No longer do we need to compare ourselves to others for we know the same God created us both. And we certainly know we have no reason to boast for we can do nothing in ourselves. Lest you might want to take credit for your accomplishments, perhaps we should hear what Christ said about Himself.
“I can do nothing on my own initiative or authority. Just as I hear, I judge; and My judgment is just (fair, righteous, unbiased), because I do not seek My own will, but only the will of Him who sent Me.
Now if this is true of Christ, and it is; then it is also true for us. When we see the life of Christ, we see both humility and confidence working together. Scripture tells us that Christ was meek and lowly, never bringing attention to Himself but always attributing His work to the Father, yet at the very same time we see His confidence in who He was. When He stood before the demon-possessed or at Lazarus tomb confronting death or rebuking the wind and waves; we find a man of great confidence. That confidence wasn’t in His own abilities but His confidence was in the Father who sent Him and the Holy Spirit who empowered Him. He had nothing to prove; He had no need to boast, He had no reason to compete for He knew that He had been formed in Mary’s womb by the Holy Spirit and sent by the Father for a purpose.
The heart of Psalm 139:14 is to help us know that we are the design of God. It is He who made us and not we ourselves. God makes no useless people. There are really only two groups of people in the world: those who have discovered their God-given purpose and those who have yet to discover their purpose. I think sometimes the reason we want to be or be like someone else is that we don’t know what God designed us to be or what our purpose in life is supposed to be.
The happiest people in the world are those who have found out that they have been incredibly designed by God and they have placed themselves in His hands and said, “Do with me what You wish!” And when He does, how easy it is to give Him the credit!
Dr. John Thompson