Have you ever gotten a sense of who the REAL “you” is? The “you” God created, designed, intended to exist before “you” got distorted and mucked up in the fall when sin entered the world. I believe that the more you get to know Jesus, the better you understand who He made you to be. Increasing revelation of Him always corresponds to increasing revelation of ourselves (see Rev 2) because we are made in His image.

I cherish the times when I receive greater revelation of who He has made me to be, and affirmation that I am in fact living out the purpose He has for me (especially when so much of my life is spent battling thoughts of shame and failure). We recently received a note that was written with the tongue of a disciple that can sustain the weary with just a word. It contains both genuine affirmation and appreciation from a sister in Christ, as well as whispers from God for us (if you listen closely, you can hear His voice in the note, too).

On a side note, this letter reminds me that when you’re just being you, the you God intended and purposed for you to be, you can change people’s lives. I *never* would have thought that we’d had this kind of impact on the woman who wrote this note. We didn’t do anything special — we were just being us.

Niki and Kelly, 

I want to give you a small gift. I doubt it is anything you would ever have use for, but the meaning of it is something I very much treasure.

This bracelet is a few years old. I made it during college as part of a fundraiser to open a home for girls who had been victims of trafficking. The idea behind the bracelet is that we wanted to take something that would otherwise be discarded and to assign value to it again–much in the same way that these victims could have hope and feel valued.

This was the first time I really understood that I wanted to be an advocate for people.

I have kept this bracelet as a remembrance of that time. It is one of the few things that I brought with me in my move, and I give it to you as an affirmation of the great strength and safety I feel from you. I have gotten to witness your deep care for me many times, and I have seen you in action … and this same word of “advocate” always comes to mind. You lend people strength all the time. You rise up on people’s behalf.

It is inspiring, and I look at you and say–I want to learn to do that for people, too. Thank you. I do so appreciate you.