After being out of commission several times during the last several weeks with the flu, complications, and fatigue, I’ve realized something extraordinary.

I’m unnecessary.

I’ve never heard a commercial where people stand up and say it, or a protest where people hold signs to announce it, but it’s true.

I’m unnecessary.

If I can’t teach, there are subs.  If I can’t write, there are other bloggers.  If I can’t support missions, there are other mission partners.  If I can’t host a small group Bible study at my house, there are other hosts and hostesses.

I’m unnecessary.

Everything I do is replaceable.  Somebody else can do it.  I can’t think of something clever enough to say or do that I could trademark it, and even if I could, it would just mean I was the first to think or do it, not the only one.  After all, every time an invention is made, a thousand people can make a generic of it.  Every time a book becomes a best-seller, a thousand writers can follow the same feel of the series.  And even every movie star is one day replaced by the younger generation.  Yes, other than memorabilia and the History channel, everything we say and do is simply and totally replaceable.

We’re nothing more than unnecessary . . in and of ourselves.

That’s what I’ve been learning.

–But before you click out of this less-than-uplifting blog, give me one more minute.  There’s something else I want to say, and it starts with a conjunction.


We are unnecessary,


we are essential.

I can draw no other conclusion from the Gospel than this:

We are essential in God’s Book.

What do I mean by essential?  That He needs us?  Certainly not.

That I’m extraordinarily useful to Him?  Not a chance.

That I’m irreplaceable?  Not even that.  (He could make a clone of me, if He wanted.  But isn’t it fascinating that He doesn’t want to?)

What do I mean by essential, then?

I mean that God loves our essence.  Each one of us.  The God-breathed being that is you and that is me.  The “soul print” as Mark Batterson calls it–like a thumb print, the blueprint of our perfection as God intended for us to be, each one of us a different design.

Why?  Why did God make each one of us unique?  Why did He do that when He knew that some people wouldn’t follow Him?  Why didn’t He make the same personality duplicated, so every personality type would be in Heaven?  Why did He make every single, absolutely every-single-one-of-us with a different personality, with our very own color on His palette?

Love.  Sheer love.

Oh, what love.

I’m unnecessary.

But in God’s heart, I’m essential.

The bliss.

I can’t be boiled down to chemical impulses or a four-square personality type or even my DNA.  I am God-breathed, lovely, beautiful me with the love of Christ Jesus.

Without Him, it’s true, I am unnecessary.  Unnecessary, sinful, a clumsy fumble whose dropped the ball of life too many times.

But with God, I am essential.

Ah, essential.


Christ Jesus has made me essential.

I want to shout it off the rooftops.

Christ Jesus has made me essential.

God isn’t willing and doesn’t want anyone to be unnecessary.

He made you and me as one-of-a-kind sons and daughters of God.  WOW!  That’s what He did in Adam.  WOW!

Then the LORD God formed the man from the dust of the ground. He breathed the breath of life into the man’s nostrils, and the man became a living person. (Genesis 2:7, NLT)

We tore ourselves away from His Fatherhood, gave our birthright to Satan, ask the Deceiver to adopt us . .


. . God still came to buy us back.

More personally, He came to buy you back.

He has made you essential.

Do you believe it?

He made me essential.

It’s a surprising Gospel, and I would have never dreamed it up.

He made me essential.

That’s the God I love, know, and worship.  The God who loves and knows me and, through His Son’s absolution of my sin, even encourages me–unnecessary wretch that I am!–to worship Him.


I’m unnecessary.

But because of Jesus Christ, I am essential.

Thank You, Jesus.  You are amazing.

The Lord isn’t really being slow about his promise, as some people think. No, he is being patient for your sake. He does not want anyone to be destroyed, but wants everyone to repent. (2 Peter 3:9, NLT)

This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us. (1 John 3:16, NIV)

No one has ever seen God, but the one and only Son, who is himself God and is in closest relationship with the Father, has made him known. (1 John 1:18, NIV)

Yes, by God’s grace, Jesus tasted death for everyone. (Hebrews 2:9, NLT)

Because God’s children are human beings–made of flesh and blood–the Son also became flesh and blood. For only as a human being could he die, and only by dying could he break the power of the devil, who had the power of death. (Hebrews 2:14, NLT)

“For God loved the world so much that he gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life. God sent his Son into the world not to judge the world, but to save the world through him.

“There is no judgment against anyone who believes in him. But anyone who does not believe in him has already been judged for not believing in God’s one and only Son. And the judgment is based on this fact: God’s light came into the world, but people loved the darkness more than the light, for their actions were evil. All who do evil hate the light and refuse to go near it for fear their sins will be exposed. But those who do what is right come to the light so others can see that they are doing what God wants.” (John 3:16-21, NLT)

Published in: on March 1, 2014 at 5:23 pm  Leave a Comment  

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