… the Lord sees not as man sees; for man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart. —Philippians 2:4
As a creative writer and choir girl in high school, I doubt anyone saw me as an up-and-coming stock market guru. Gosh, I struggled to make that B- in Economics 101 my junior year. But when my Future Business Leaders of America advisor asked me if I’d like to go to the FBLA state conference and competition, I gladly accepted. If nothing else, it would be time out of school to travel from my tiny hometown in East Tennessee to my favorite city, Nashville.
Much to everyone’s surprise, out of about 90 students, I had the second highest score in the state economics category! Unfortunately, only one student was sent on to compete in the national economics competition in Anaheim, California to represent our state, so obviously that honor was awarded to the top score.
A couple of months later, my FBLA advisor called me to her office. Turns out, the state competition winner had a sports conflict. By default, I was suddenly packing my bags to fly to California as one of the top “future business leaders” in the United States. To quote a famous 1990s NFL quarterback, I was “going to Disneyland!”
Have you ever landed a role or gig because the “top” option backed out?
Or have you taken the lead in a situation where someone abruptly left a job undone?
Perhaps you’re a second wife or husband. Your spouse’s second chance at a lasting and fulfilling marriage.
Or a stepmom, stepdad or an adoption parent trying to parent a child that you may not have brought into the world, but you will love like you did.
It’s important in any of these situations to never look at yourself as the next one in line. You were never the default. Because even if you were originally a man or woman’s second choice for an appointed role you now have, you were never really the next choice for it.
1 Samuel 16 shows us that David wasn’t considered first choice for King by his own father, but he was always God’s one and only for that historic role. The Lord sent Samuel to Bethlehem, because God had chosen one of Jesse’s sons to be king. Samuel began looking at the sons based on their outward appearance. But God made it clear that while people look at appearances, He looks at the heart.
Jesse had his seven oldest sons stand before Samuel, but none were God’s chosen. The future king, Jesse’s youngest, was sent off to tend the sheep. Perhaps his potential was overlooked by his own dad and family, but God’s anointing lead David to become one of the strongest figures in the Bible. A man after God’s own heart.
And like David, by God’s guidance, He leads you as you faithfully follow His will for your life. He doesn’t bring you to a destination by accident. Or because you were the next best one available to show up. God’s timing and placement are perfect. His plans and appointments are covered in His favor and grace.
You are the only one God made to walk in your shoes. Think about how amazing that is! God created a unique journey for each one of us, and blessed us with talents, gifts and destinies. And through our adventures, we can ultimately glorify Him.
Faithfully take on and trust in the roles He’s given you, pray for confidence through Christ, and let Him direct and guide you. Perhaps this is the moment for which you have been created. (Esther 4:14)
For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope. —Jeremiah 29:11
For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them. —Ephesians 2:10