Tuesday, April 24, 2007

God Made Me Who I Am

An Ancient Art: Japanese calligraphy.
Enchanting and beautiful black ink script spell the four seasons (from right to left): spring, summer, fall, and winter. (This is my first try at the most famous of Asia’s traditional arts)

Last night, as I was staring at my first piece of Japanese artwork, I was entirely filled with glee – smiling ear to ear and nearly giggling with delight. I love Asia and its culture and Japan is on my “top favorite places in the world to go to someday” list. I was and still am so happy and ecstatic that I had pulled off my first Asian project.

First, let me give you a little history about me: I love Asia and for years, I have always wanted to be Asian. There is something about the beautiful, shiny black hair and distinct Oriental eyes that captivates me. I have sometimes thought about what kind of names I might have if I were Asian and what nationality I would want to be (mainly Japanese but more recently Korean or Vietnamese). Whenever I see an Oriental person, I am immediately drawn to them. Unfortunately, I seem to view them as a wonderful and glorious people group but then I realize that they are just the same as regular human beings with degenerate sin natures who need Jesus Christ as much as I do.

Back to last night: Still ecstatic, as I walked away from the corner of my room dedicated to all things Asian, a thought suddenly flashed in my mind from out of no where.

If I was Asian, I would not have the same appreciation for the Oriental culture as I do now.

“PRAISE GOD!!!” I thought. That had never occurred to me before and I am certain it could not have been my own thought but that God told me that wonderful and glorious truth. I was so grateful and thanked God so much that He loved me. It was such an incredible and wonderful revelation that I wanted to cry with joy! He loves me so much and made me who I am so that I could appreciate the Oriental culture in a way I could probably never do if I was Asian!

Here are some verses on this breathtaking and beautifully magnificent truth:

Psalm 139

O LORD, thou hast searched me, and known [me].
Thou knowest my downsitting and mine uprising, thou understandest my thought afar off.
Thou compassest my path and my lying down, and art acquainted [with] all my ways.
For [there is] not a word in my tongue, [but], lo, O LORD, thou knowest it altogether.

Thou hast beset me behind and before, and laid thine hand upon me.
[Such] knowledge [is] too wonderful for me; it is high, I cannot [attain] unto it.

Whither shall I go from thy spirit? or whither shall I flee from thy presence?
If I ascend up into heaven, thou [art] there: if I make my bed in hell, behold, thou [art there].

[If] I take the wings of the morning, [and] dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea;
Even there shall thy hand lead me, and thy right hand shall hold me.

If I say, Surely the darkness shall cover me; even the night shall be light about me.
Yea, the darkness hideth not from thee; but the night shineth as the day: the darkness and the light [are] both alike [to thee].

For thou hast possessed my reins: thou hast covered me in my mother's womb.
I will praise thee; for I am fearfully [and] wonderfully made: marvellous [are] thy works; and [that] my soul knoweth right well.

My substance was not hid from thee, when I was made in secret, [and] curiously wrought in the lowest parts of the earth.

Thine eyes did see my substance, yet being unperfect; and in thy book all [my members] were written, [which] in continuance were fashioned, when [as yet there was] none of them.

How precious also are thy thoughts unto me, O God! how great is the sum of them!
[If] I should count them, they are more in number than the sand: when I awake, I am still with thee.

Surely thou wilt slay the wicked, O God: depart from me therefore, ye bloody men.
For they speak against thee wickedly, [and] thine enemies take [thy name] in vain.
Do not I hate them, O LORD, that hate thee? and am not I grieved with those that rise up against thee?

I hate them with perfect hatred: I count them mine enemies.
Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts:
And see if [there be any] wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.

Matthew 10:29-31

Are not two sparrows sold for a farthing? and one of them shall not fall on the ground without your Father.
But the very hairs of your head are all numbered.
Fear ye not therefore, ye are of more value than many sparrows.

Ephesians 2:10

For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.

Ephesians 1:4-6

According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love:

Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to
the good pleasure of his will, to the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved.

Revelation 1:4-6

John to the seven churches which are in Asia: Grace [be] unto you, and peace, from him which is, and which was, and which is to come; and from the seven Spirits which are before his throne;

And from Jesus Christ, [who is] the faithful witness, [and] the first begotten of the dead, and
the prince of the kings of the earth. Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood,

And hath made us kings and priests unto God and his Father; to him [be] glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen.

Thank you, God for making me who I am. Thank you for making me Your Child! Your beautiful, wonderful, and sovereign grace has saved me, Lord and I am forever grateful to You. You are amazingly beautiful for who You are, Lord. Thank you, God.

~ Elizabeth F.