Being young today can come with a lot of pressure. There are expectations, stress, and demands coming from all directions.
The future is uncertain. We often put a lot of pressure on ourselves because of real or imagined expectations from family or society.
Expectations vs. reality
I myself was never happy with being “average”. I wanted to be the best at everything, and I found it hard to accept the fact that there were some things I wasn’t good at. This led to disappointment, bitterness, and jealousy, as I compared myself to others.
In the end, I realised that my own high expectations were making me a slave! I was so unhappy with what I had been given; it was never enough and I just ended up being tired and stressed.
“For we are God’s masterpiece …”
I realised that while I was trying to please my friends, family, and myself, I was missing the only thing that is important. And that is that there is only One that I should want to please. The One who created me – my Lord and Master.
“For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.” Ephesians 2:10 (NLT).
God created me according to His perfect will. This was something He thought out and carefully planned. He chose me before the world was created, and gave me the unique personality, talents and abilities that He knew would be best.
When I am free from my own complexes – inferiority, superiority, etc. – then I learn how to use the gifts and abilities that God has given me to serve Him in the way that He has planned for me. Then my eyes are open to use the opportunities I have been given and live before God’s face. I can live in a way that is pleasing to Him, and I become free from trying to be the “perfect” person for all the wrong reasons.
Using what God has given me
When I am faithful to the fullest with what God has given me, then there is no reason to be unhappy or stressed about my future, for I know that He has a perfect plan for me. He will take care of me! I may not be the “world’s greatest” or perfect at everything, but when I do each task with all my heart as to the Lord and not to men (Colossians 3:23) then it will be blessed. Then I will learn how to do it better and better.
So now, even though my nature still wants to do everything perfectly, I no longer feel like I am living under a lot of pressure. I can’t allow myself to use the gifts that God has given me to show other people I am better than them because then I will find myself outside His will. But I can do what He has given me to do simply and faithfully, and be at rest within!
I can be like clay in the Potter’s hand – God can use me and I can be formed into the person He wants me to be.
When I live like this, there is no stress or “pressure!” I can look to the future with hope and confidence.