I’ve always had a bit of a flair for home design and fashion. It’s the creative, artistic side of me that loves to combine on-trend colours and styles in a way that makes the things I’m surrounded by everyday fun to look at. When my kids were little, one of my favourite outings was to just get a coffee and wander around my local Homesense store looking for inspiration and a few moments of tranquillity.
My house is fairly neutral. If you were going to give my style a name, neutral and transitional, with a little dose of rustic farmhouse would come to mind. I like a simple backdrop with a few key finds that bring it all to life. My house is an expression of me… and yours should be an expression of you.
I used to watch a design show with this lovely older woman named Ray Staples. Ray was full of life and loved to wear big hats, large framed glasses and every vibrant colour under the sun. When she showed homes that she had designed they were crazy. Nothing seemed to match or go together at all. Wild wallpaper, mixed metals and styles. I remember in one episode a woman brought in some things from her home to ask Ray if they matched. I loved Ray’s response. She simply shrugged her shoulders and said, “did God make all the trees in the forest match? If you love it, go for it. Life is short, surround yourself with things that make you happy. Who cares if they match.”
Ray may have been on to something. Her approach to style and design has a name… Eclectic. If your style is eclectic it means that you don’t really follow any hard or fast rules, you’ve simply resigned yourself to buy things you love and find a place to use them regardless what anyone else thinks… after all, beauty is in the eye of the beholder.
Last week I was studying and preparing a message for a women’s event that reminded me of Ray and her thoughts on design. I came across the word chosen. This word in Greek is eklektos where we get our modern day word eclectic from. This word has a meaning that is a little deeper than just being chosen, it implies that there is a deeply personal choice involved, as though each one he chooses is his favourite and was chosen out of a personal and individual preference. God has chosen an eclectic mix of people to be his church and he loves it that way.
1 Peter 2:9
But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.
God has set you apart and chosen you to have a unique place of honour in his eclectic house. You’ve got a purpose that isn’t so much about becoming like every other Christian and conforming to some sort of holy code of conduct. It’s much more about the love of God being expressed through your life in a way that is an entirely unique representation of him in the world.
You weren’t called out to blend in. You were called out and chosen by God because you’ve got something special to offer. You are valuable to him. There’s something about the way you will understand God and reflect him in and through your life that makes you completely special.
There is this prayer that I’ve heard people pray in church for most of my life and I have to be honest and say I’ve prayed this prayer too. “Lord Jesus, empty out all of me and fill me with all of you.” This is a noble prayer. It’s wanting to rid our lives of anything that would hinder the work and revelation of God. But one day I just felt like Jesus nudged me a little and said, “why wouldn’t I want all of you?”
God created you and knit you together in your mother’s womb. He placed within you certain gifts and abilities and hardwired desires and dreams into your soul. He’s not looking for you to empty yourself of all those beautiful things, I think what he would rather see is all those things surrendered to all of him so that he can use them for his glory.
Your purpose is to become more like Christ so that there is another unique facet and expression of Christ in our world. God choose you because he loves you just as you are and desires to use you in his kingdom. This is really important to remember when we are dealing with other people. Just as God chose you, he chose them too and believes they are just as valuable to his Kingdom as you are.
If we can remember that his church is an eclectic mix, meant to show his grace in various forms it will help us remember to encourage each one to use their gifts and shine in the unique way God has wired them for the benefit of all.
1 Peter 4:10
Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms.
Brenda Drost is a Pastor and Speaker who is known for her warm smile and passionate preaching style. Whether she is teaching at her home church or out on the road, she loves to bring challenging messages that actually help people live out their faith in the real world. She and her husband live on their farm in the beautiful Niagara Region of Ontario, Canada where they have raised their four children. Find out more about Brenda here.