Are You Ashamed of Who You Are?

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Are You Ashamed of Who You Are?
by Bo Sanchez

There are people who feel that they don’t deserve to ask for anything.

That’s why I like the story of Elijah and Elisha.

Next to Moses, Elijah was the greatest Old Testament prophet. Elisha was his disciple, his understudy. Think Robin to Batman.

One day, the great prophet said to his disciple, “Ask what I shall do for you before I be taken away from you.”

I love what Elisha said. He replied, “I pray that I get a double portion of your spirit.”

Wow! What guts. What daring. What boldness!

Sometimes I imagine if Elisha was Filipino. It would have been a very different scenario, believe me.

Because the Pinoy Elisha would have blushed, chuckled, and with a wave of his hand replied, “Oh, I want nothing at all. You’ve already given me so much.”

And Elijah would have to cajole him, “Come on, Elisha, tell me. What do you want?”

To which the Pinoy Elisha would reply, “Nothing. Really! Nothing at all.”

Elijah would press some more, until Elisha would say, “OK, just give me an itsy-bitsy little, tiny smudge of your anointing. And I’ll be more than happy!”

This is what I call the “itsy-bitsy spirituality.” And it has many devotees.

It’s very Filipino. But I’m sure that it’s a universal phenomenon too.

We need to learn to ask.

Many times, we don’t ask because we think we don’t deserve to ask.

We don’t feel we deserve a good job.

We don’t feel we deserve a good husband.

We don’t feel we deserve a house.

We don’t feel we deserve healing.

We think that we’re small.

Ask!

Sadly, sometimes we refuse to love ourselves because we are too concerned about what other people will say.

Don’t Be afraid of What Other People Will Say

If there were people around who heard Elisha ask in that way, perhaps some of them would have said, “How dare he ask that way? My gosh, he asked for double. The gall. How arrogant! How selfish!”

But Elijah asked for a double portion not so that he would be greater than his teacher. No. He asked so that he could serve more. (So if you’re going ask, might as well ask big.)

Some people are afraid of rejection. They’re scared that when they’re successful, their family and friends will say, “You’re different now.” So they don’t ask for what God wants to give them. “What will other people say?” they think. So the buffet of blessings is waiting but they don’t partake of it because of shame.

There are times when we pray for something, and then we stop because we feel that it’s a selfish prayer. “It’s just for me,” we think. And so we reject the blessing of God that was supposed to be—not for us—but to be used as a blessing for many others.

Here’s a key principle you’ve got to understand: God wants to bless others through you, but He has to bless you first.

One day several years ago, we went to the beautiful Sagada mountains. Going home, we passed by Nueva Vizcaya.

After eight hours of traveling in our minivan, my boys were hungry. So we dropped by at a restaurant for lunch.

That was when a funny thing happened: All the managers of the store recognized me.

In their eyes, I was a big celebrity. It was as though John Lloyd came into the store. (I must admit, I see a few similarities. We both have two hands, two feet, two eyes, and one nose.) So they took my photo and asked for my autograph.

That wasn’t all. One manager told me, “It’s our tenth anniversary and we have this big raffle. Can you do the honor of picking the grand prize?” The Department of Trade and Industry representative was there, wearing a nice black coat, looking formal and all.

That was when I realized how ridiculous I looked.

I was on vacation mode.

I was wearing puruntong shorts.

I was in a crummy T-shirt.

I wore muddy sandals.

I didn’t even have a shower that morning because Sagada was freezing.

And for four days, I didn’t shave.

Just to let you know, my moustache doesn’t look nice. No matter how I try, I can’t really have a moustache—I have Genghis Khan whiskers that are crooked and point
to the north, south, east, and west.

But here was the thing: The people there didn’t see any of that!

All they saw was Bo Sanchez, the author and speaker.

Jeepers.

So there I was, standing beside the DTI guy in a black coat, surrounded by the managers, the staff, and a circle of people—all the while being photographed in my puruntong shorts.

My point?

In that restaurant, I had a glimpse of what you and I experience before God.

When God looks at you, He doesn’t see your external weaknesses.

He doesn’t see your sins, your failures, and your mistakes.

He only sees who you really are deep within. He sees your core.

He sees your greatness.

When you really think about this incredible greatness within you, how can you not be happy? The reason we’re not happy is because we forget who we really are.

Dear friend, when you really think about it, there’s no reason for you not to appreciate yourself and be happy.

In God’s eyes, you’re awesome.

*This excerpt is taken from Kerygma magazine January 2018 issue.
Photo from Unsplash.com.



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