Fr. Stavros N. Akrotirianakis is the Proistamenos of St. John Greek Orthodox Church in Tampa, FL. Fr. contributes the Prayer Team Ministry, a daily reflection, which began in February 2015. The Prayer Team now has its own dedicated website! Fr. Stavros has produced two books, “Let All Creation Rejoice: Reflections on Advent, the Nativity and Epiphany”: “https://amzn.to/2t1rXwh and “The Road Back to Christ: Reflections on Lent, Holy Week and the Resurrection.” https://amzn.to/2WAcfG0
THE ENCOURAGEMENT PROJECT
Then God said, “Let us make man in Our Image, after Our Likeness; and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps upon the earth.” So God created man in His own Image, in the Image of God He created him; male and female He created them. Genesis 1: 26-27
Good morning Prayer Team!
In the last reflection, I wrote about doing the best with what you have on a given day. I want to continue the discussion today by encouraging you to be the best version of who God made you to be. From the perspective of our talents, we are all different. Each of us has been given a different set of gifts and abilities.
However, we are all the same in two very important ways. First, we are all created in the image and likeness of God. God has put His imprint on each one of us. Secondly, we have all been created for the same purpose—to glorify God in this life, as we prepare for everlasting life. What makes us different is how we will each glorify God. We will each do something that is not unique—glorifying God—but do it in a unique way.
We did an exercise at a youth event recently where participants were given two handouts of a human body that looked like a ginger bread man. A small version appears below. On the one that says “Who I am”, the participants were asked to write out their talents, favorite things to do, things they are good at, interesting things about them, etc. On the one that says “Who God created me to be” they were asked to write things related to how God wants us to live our lives. So things like “God made me to be loving, caring, charitable, forgiving, to glorify Him,” etc.
Then we asked participants to put one body over the other to see if the person we actually are matches the person that God intends for us to be. And then we asked the question, “Are you the best version of who God made you to be?”
This is a healthy exercise for anyone. Print off two images of gingerbread men from “google” and write on one, all the things that are special about you. On the other, write down all the things God made us to do in this life. Then, put the bodies over each other and evaluate, “Are you the best version of who God made you to be?”
So, not only are we supposed to be doing the best with what we have on a given day, but we are supposed to be the best version of who God made us to be on a given day. That means that when we are doing certain behaviors, as an example yelling, cursing, bullying, lying, etc., we have to “check ourselves” with the question, is this the best version of who God made me to be?
Lord thank You for creating me. Thank You for the gift of the very life I have. Thank You for the things that are unique about me (list some of them). Help me to honor You by being the best version of who You made me to be. Help me to remember this in each interaction and each decision I make today. Amen.
Be the best version of who God made you to be today!
Visit our site each day to read the Daily Devotion!
ABOUT THE ORTHODOX CHRISTIAN NETWORK
The Orthodox Christian Network (OCN) is an official agency of the Assembly of Canonical Bishops of the United States of America, originally commissioned by SCOBA to create a national, sustainable, and effective media witness for Orthodox Christianity and seekers around the world through media ministry. CLICK HERE to download our brochure.
This 501(c)3 is recognized as a leader in the Orthodox Media field and has sustained consistent growth over twenty years. OCN shares the timeless faith of Orthodoxy with the contemporary world through modern media. We are on a mission to inspire Orthodox Christians Worldwide. We have reached 5.7 Million People in One Week. Much like public radio, the Orthodox Christian Network relies on the support of our listeners, readers, and fans. If you are interested in supporting our work, you can send your gift by direct mail, over the phone, or on our website. Your gift will ensure that OCN may continue to offer free, high-quality, Orthodox media.
Do you find it hard to keep focused on Christ when you’re on the go? OCN makes it easy! Give today to help you and your Orthodox community stay connected no matter the location.
ORTHODOX MOBILE APPS ARE HERE!
Click here to download the Spark OCN and Orthodox Prayer Book.
Posted by the Orthodox Christian Network. OCN is on Social Media! Follow us on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube,