"The value of life is not in its duration but donation. You are not important because of how long you live, you are important because of how effective you live." -- The late Dr. Myles Monroe

"For we are God's handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do." Ephesians 2:10 NIV

To begin and live a life of meaning, you must understand your worth.

What does it mean to be God's handiwork?

As created beings, you and I are uniquely designed individuals and set apart from others with a divine purpose. We are one of a kind. You and I are special and beautifully made in his image. There are no imperfections in us. God never makes a mistake. We are to value ourselves as he does, and others will begin to see it too. Allow your light in Christ to impact others.

"The value of life is not in its duration but donation. You are not important because of how long you live, you are important because of how effective you live." -- The late Dr. Myles Monroe

To fully appreciate the journey God has predestined, you and I must be willing to trust and believe.

"For every creation of God is good, and nothing that is received with thanksgiving should be rejected."

When opinions and thoughts of others are allowed to define who we are and to take over that of God, we are rejecting that which he values most, self. This is an offense before him.

The key to unlock what is contained beyond mankind's reach and to live life as God intended requires our ability to take him at his word. Follow the plan of God for your life and what he calls you to do.

What many fail to remember is what God authorizes, he is committed and honored bound to provide. It is his faithfulness that makes all the difference.

As previously mentioned, we are created in Christ Jesus to do good works. As believers we are instructed to love as he loved (unconditionally), give as he gave (not grudgingly) and live as he lived as we share the gospel (discipleship).

We have been equipped with the necessary gifts and talents to do the will of God and be successful in life. Our lives have been fashioned by God with a beginning, middle, and ending, already in existence before we were created.

How do I know?

It is written: "I knew you before I formed you in your mother's womb. Before you were born I set you apart and appointed you as my prophet to the nations."

"When you have a purpose for your life it disciplines your behavior and chooses your habits," Monroe said.

When living a purpose-filled life we will experience opposition. The enemy will use everyone and everything to hinder our progress. It is easy to become distracted when unsure of the outcome of that which you have been called. Fear not for you are never alone. The lord is always with you.

When David was called to replace King Saul as the next king of Israel and Judah, he was a young shepherd tending the flock of his father. As he matured into his new role, over time he began to experience jealously and resistance from those in his inner circle and feared for his life. This did not stop him from being obedient to his divine purpose. In fact it is recorded God was very pleased with him.

"And when he had removed him, he raised up David to be their king, of whom he testified and said, 'I have found in David the son of Jesse a man after my heart, who will do all my will.'"

Our faith and obedience will always bring forth blessings.

"And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose."

Remember it is God's approval we seek, and not man's.

Until next week, be blessed and continue to bless others along the way. Shalom.

(Bible references: 1 Timothy 4:4; 1 John 4:16; 2 Corinthians 9:7; Matthew 28:18 - 28:20; Acts 13:22 ESV; Romans 8:28. To obtain the full benefits of each verse, please read the five verses before and after each verse.)

Contributing Writer Edith Nevis can be reached at 985-857-2200 or at edith.nevis@houmatoday.com.