Hidden Potential
My church has recently started a new series called “HGTV Life.” Apparently, our minister spent a lot of time watching HGTV after one of his recent surgeries…and it occurred to him that this concept of home improvement might make for an interesting series…especially considering that God is the ultimate “Design Star.”

Last week, we kicked off the series with a discussion of character. Although I did not post on my blog, I did not skip the lesson…rather, I applied that inspiration to an upcoming guest post at Higher Calling Focus which will post in October. This week, we continued the series with “Hidden Potential: Discovering Our Character Potential.”
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It’s true, much like those ratty old homes seen on the HGTV show, “Hidden Potential,” each of us has hidden and often untapped potential. But, as Erwin Raphael McManus says in his book, Seizing Your Divine Moment:
“What once was a statement of promise is now an assessment of lost opportunity.  There is a point where you’re not supposed to be full of potential; you’re supposed to be full of talent, capacity, productivity.  Potential is a glimpse of what could be, yet there must be a shift from where we have potential to where we are potent.” 
Unfortunately, for so many of us, we lack the confidence to live up to our spiritual potential as much as we lack the confidence to live up to the potential we have with anything else…be it school, sports, relationships…even photography. We’re quick to throw out excuses for why we can’t: too busy, too damaged, not talented enough, etc. Why is it that we are so quick to say “accept me for who I am,” and yet some people seem to be sprinkled with Jesus fairy dust…you know like Peter Pan and Tinker Bell. 

I’m sure you’ve seen these types of people…it’s as if they’re living and breathing the Holy Spirit all the time. And they are always having these intimate experiences with God that the rest of us can only dream of having. Then we look at ourselves in the mirror and wonder why we can’t “hear” God speak to us…or why we can’t “feel” God moving within us. So…to make ourselves feel better, we idolize and make heroes of these God-like people…you know, the ones who are actively sharing the word…serving others…looking and behaving like “Christians,” except we call them missionaries.

We can’t keep making excuses…we certainly don’t accept excuses from others. If your child says they can’t do math (insert any subject matter here)…you spend more time studying that subject. God is the same way. He doesn’t accept our excuses, only sees our hidden potential.
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And, if we were to ask God what he wants our character to look like, he would point at his son, Jesus. Romans 8:29 says:
“For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the likeness of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers.”
Jesus died as an example of how we should live our lives. His life is a model for how we should live…and what our character should look like. And just as it says in John 15: 1-5…apart from him, we can do nothing. But, if we simply abide (remain, stay close) in him, we can start unlocking our full potential. But, where do we start?
  1. Start thinking and acting relationally, not religiously. A religious view makes people try really really hard to be accepted, but never feeling adequate enough. However, God gave his son’s life to bridge the gap…not so we could have religion, but a relationship!
  2. Adopt the attitude, “I can’t, but HE can through me.” Stay close to Jesus and let him live through us. Philippians 4:13, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” At some point, we just have to give up the fight and allow God to take the lead.
With that said, are you living up to your hidden potential? 

On another note, I’m sure you’ve heard of the devastation that occurred in Joplin, Missouri. Fellow blogger, Simply Life Photographs recently posted this message: CLICK HERE. Right now, hopes and prayers are being collected to show these people how much they are loved and being loved around the world. If you’d like to know more about this project or where to send your prayer, CLICK HERE. The deadline is October 1st. I submitted mine this past weekend.