the past you wasted too much time doing what nonbelievers enjoy. You
were guilty of sexual sins, evil desires, drunkenness, wild and
drunken parties, and hateful idol worship. Nonbelievers think it is
strange that you do not do the many wild and wasteful things they do,
so they insult you. But they will have to explain this to God, who is
ready to judge the living and the dead.”—I Peter 3:4-5 (NCV)

superior man thinks always of virtue; the common man thinks of

“Ain’t no man can
avoid being average, but there ain’t no man got to be
common.”—Satchel Paige

young man said the cutest thing to me the other day. “You ain’t
common like these other girls.”

it could have been game (for you, uh, wiser folks, “game” means
“a line”). Who knows? Quite frankly, I don’t too much care
because he couldn’t have been more than 18 or 19 years of age.
However, what I liked about what he said was the word that he used.
Not that I’m cute or stacked or sexy. I am not

all should know me well enough by now to know that, of course, that
got my mind to racing. When I got home, I decided to look up the
word simply because I have come to realize just how few of them I
really know the meaning of, and you can’t, or at least shouldn’t, use
words when you don’t know their meaning. After all, the Bible does
tell us that along with wisdom, we
must get an
understanding, right? (Proverbs 4:5-7)

widespread; general; ordinary; of frequent occurrence; usual;
familiar; of mediocre or inferior quality; mean; low; lacking rank,
station, distinction, etc.; unexceptional; ordinary; public; not
distinguished by superior or noteworthy characteristics; second-rate;
of or associated with the great masses of people; lacking refinement
or cultivation or taste;
be expected

Wow. Now, that is about the sweetest thing I think any
regardless of age, has ever said to me! Cute is “widespread”.
Stacked is “of frequent occurrence”. Sexy is pretty “familiar”.
But uncommon? Uncommon, just by its very definition, is none of
those things. When I decided to look at this from a spiritual
perspective, first the Holy Spirit (Luke 12:12) led me to I Peter
2:9-10 (NKJV):

you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation,
special people,
that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of
darkness into His marvelous light; who once were not a people but are
now the people of God, who had not obtained mercy but now have
obtained mercy.”

he told me to look up what “special” means.

surpassing what is common; of a distinct or particular kind or
character; having a specific or particular function, purpose, etc.;
distinguished or different from what is ordinary or usual; being such
in an exceptional degree; particularly valued; arranged for a
particular occasion; additional; extra.

now. When we the last time that you heard someone tell you, or you
considered yourself to be—and therefore acted like you were,
“surpassing what is common”, “having a specific function”,
“being particularly valued” or being “additional” or “extra”;
a surplus, if you will? When you last heard the promise that God can
do exceedingly above all that we ask or think,
to the power that works in us
did you ever consider yourself to be that for someone else? Their
answer? Their miracle? Their extra? Their “exceedingly above”?

I’ve said it once, I’ve said it a trillion times this year. Family,
we have to get our self-esteem up and at ’em! While Christ was on
the earth he instructed that we love ourselves. There’s no way that
we can love our neighbors (Mark 12:33) appropriately otherwise. The
bigger point here is that if we don’t love ourselves,
can’t love him.
Loving ourselves is a way to express our love for Christ. (When was
the last time you were preached
that sermon?
I know, right?—John 14:15.)

months ago, a blast from my past said something that has stayed with
me. “I would never try and sleep with you (again) unless we were
married. In life, there are women you are comfortable with and women
that you love. You sleep with the ones that you are comfortable with
because you don’t really care one way or another about losing or
hurting them. You don’t want to ruin the relationship you have with
the one(s) that you love and so you leave them alone.” Hmph. One
of my favorite quotes of all time is “Where there is love, there is
no sin”, so I guess my ex was really on to something, but did you
catch what one of the lead quotes for this message said? It said
that the COMMON MAN thinks of comfort. My ex said that it’s the
comfortable—in other words, common—women that men will sleep

oh, boy. Now I won’t even get into the fact that to sleep with a
common woman, you yourself are treating your human trinity (mind,
body and spirit) as common. Love is patient (I Corinthians 13:4) and
honestly, I can relate to his low sense of self-worth because it took
me quite some time to really grasp that the Holy Spirit lived within
me, which automatically makes me special! (I Corinthians 6:19).
That’s his “pimple” and I won’t try and pop it. (I just love
that!) But I did want you to catch how spiritual things always come
full circle.

Bible tells us that we are not to partake in fornication or adultery
(Hebrews 13:4), but I fear that so many of us are so “so we won’t
go to hell” consumed that we miss the greater point. God doesn’t
want us to do these things because WE ARE SPECIAL. Our human trinity
has a specific function. Our human trinity is to be different from
what is ordinary. Our human trinity has been arranged for a
particular occasion. God wants us to wait because he doesn’t see us
as common and he doesn’t want us to be treated as such, either.

several years now, whenever I meet someone new, I will (internally)
ask, “Who sent you? Whose assignment are you on?” Some of my
friends used to tease me about being “so deep”. Oh, but please
believe I got freed up this year (John 8:32) when I realized that God
giving me the spirit of power, love and a sound mind, with “sound”
meaning “to investigate” (2 Timothy 1:7) meant that God gave me
to spirit to check things out,
Proverbs 15:21 tells us that folly is joy to him who is destitute of
discernment. In other words, if you’re not in the practice of
looking before you leap, that is not faith; that’s foolishness.

this year has also taught me to start really—and I mean,
to what people say…how they say it…when they say it…where they
say it…and yes, through discernment (and at times, inquiry), why
they are saying it. Proverbs 18:21 states that death and life are in
the power of the tongue. Most of us are familiar with that part of
the scripture, but check out the second half: “…and those who
love it will eat its fruit.” Galatians 6:8 says that those who sow
to the flesh will reap corruption, but those who sow to the Spirit
will reap everlasting life. My point? Since God sees me as
uncommon, I have to watch what people sow into me; not just what they
do, but what they say. Common words should not be a part of my daily
diet. Why? Because I am exceptional, nondescript, rare, unique,
In the wise words of El DeBarge, “I’m special, not the average
kind who’d accept any line that sounds good. So reach into your
train of thought, try to find something new. What worked so well for
you before, for me, it just won’t do.” (Preach, boy!)

I look back over my life and a lot of the mistakes that I’ve made,
most of them were directly connected to how I allowed people to speak
to/into me. I treated myself as if I were common because I processed
the words that were being spoken to me like I was. I have told a few
of my friends that on election day, I am going to wear a shirt says
“God is pro-choice”, because he is. God, nor I can stop someone
from saying things to or about me, but Proverbs says that those who
love words will eat of their fruit. That means that while you may be
able to “dish it up”, but you can’t make me eat it. If I want to
treat myself as a “common woman” that is my, and my choice alone.
If I want to “fatten up” on negativity, mediocrity, redundancy,
I can’t blame nobody else if I do.

with all that God has been showing me about myself, why would I want
to do that…anymore?

last night, I was speaking to some youth (thanks again, Erica and
Monte for the opportunity). When I asked how many in the class were
virgins, two girls were scared to death to raise their hands. After
class, they came to me and said, “People make fun of us when we say
that.” Please put them on your prayer list. (Just lift up “The
Daniel Generation” in general, please.) Already, they are taking
in the “death words diet” and I’m hoping that prayer will purge
them. I have a friend who is my age who is also a virgin. I am
always trying to get her to start up a ministry/platform for
virginity because to remain pure is UNCOMMON,
the way God called his children to be
So many of our young people have become like the A student who sits
in a C-average classroom. In order to fit it, they sink to everyone
else’s level instead of setting a standard for those around them to
come up to. At the end of the day, this “fear of the uncommon”
mentality causes everyone to suffer.

Family, this is what
so many of us are doing, not just when it comes to our sexuality, but
our lives in general. We are A-class people, but we are flunking
life all because we want to “fit in”. Fitting in is not our
purpose. As a matter of fact, Titus 2:11-15 (NCV) told us how we are
supposed to live our lives:

That is the way we
should live, because God’s grace that can save everyone has come. It
teaches us not to live against God nor to do the evil things the
world wants to do. Instead, that grace teaches us to live in the
present age in a wise and right way and in a way that shows we serve
God. We should live like that while we wait for our great hope and
the coming of the glory of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ. He
gave himself for us so he might pay the price to free us from all
evil and to make us pure people who belong only to him—people who
are always wanting to do good deeds. Say these things and encourage
the people and tell them what is wrong in their lives, with all
not let anyone treat you as if you were unimportant.

not let anyone treat you as if you were unimportant…nothing
One of my closest friends and I have a catchphrase that we use in
our relationship as of late. I made it up, but I like it. Whenever
one of us feels that our boundaries have been crossed we will say,
“Uh, you are coloring outside of the lines.” Do you remember
when you were a child and you were coloring in your coloring book?
The pictures always seemed prettier when they were colored inside the
lines, right? The lines are there for a reason.

boundaries, the law that God placed before us is very similar to that
coloring book. It is not to keep us from anything. It’s not a form
of punishment. Christ said that he came to give us abundant life
(John 10:10). Proverbs 13:14 states that the law is the fountain of
life. (Along with the fear of the Lord.—Proverbs 14:27) What God
advises us not to do, it’s because in the spiritual realm (I
Corinthians 3:19), by partaking, it causes us to settle for less than
how he sees us. It sets us up for less than what he desires for us.
(I Corinthians 2:9) It ends up treating us as less than what we
really are. It blew my mind today when I read, and really processed,
two scriptures:

no one anything except to love one another, for he who loves another
has fulfilled the law.”—Romans 13:8 (NKJV)

does no harm to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfillment of the
law.”—Romans 13:10 (NKJV)

law came because when sin entered the earth, we lost sight of love.
Oh, but once perfect love is manifest, the law is not needed. You
know I can’t wait to tell my teen moms this, right? When you love,
and I mean
you don’t need to worry about not having sex outside of marriage
(fornication), fighting with your “friends” over some boy
(covetousness), obsessing to look like someone other than yourself
(envy). When you love in the way that God meant for you to, you are
fulfilling the law. The law is set in place to remind us how to love
ourselves and others in the way that we all deserve.

Yeah, it’s not the way
people do it out there in the world. To show respect, to show
restraint, to treat those around you like royalty is a little weird.
But when it comes time for me to meet my prince, I don’t want him
treating me with a “ho-hum, been there/done that” attitude. I
want what Ruth and Esther got:

said, ‘
God bless you, my dear daughter! What a splendid expression of love! And
when you could have had your pick of any of the young men around. And
now, my dear daughter, don’t you worry about a thing; I’ll do all you
could want or ask. Everybody in town knows what a courageous woman
you are— a real prize!’”—Ruth 3:10-11 (Message)

As they were
drinking wine, the king said to Esther, ‘Now, what are you asking
for? I will give it to you. What is it you want? I will give you as
much as half of my kingdom.’”—Esther 5:6 (NCV)

are the praises and blessings that come with being an
uncommon woman. The common ones?

Don’t desire her
because she is beautiful. Don’t let her capture you by the way she
looks at you.
A prostitute will treat you like a loaf of bread,
and a woman who takes part in adultery may cost you your life. You
cannot carry hot coals against your chest without burning your
clothes, and you cannot walk on hot coals without burning your feet.
”—Proverbs 6:25-28 (NCV)

‘Come, let’s make
love until morning. Let’s enjoy each other’s love. My husband is not
home; he has gone on a long trip. He took a lot of money with him and
won’t be home for weeks.’ By her clever words she made him give in;
by her pleasing words she led him into doing wrong. All at once he
followed her, like an ox led to the butcher, like a deer caught in a
trap and shot through the liver with an arrow. Like a bird caught in
a trap, he didn’t know what he did would kill him. Now, my sons,
listen to me; pay attention to what I say. Don’t let yourself be
tricked by such a woman; don’t go where she leads you.
has ruined many good men, and many have died because of her.
house is on the road to death, the road that leads down to the
7:18-27 (NCV)

the price of sin? Death, right? (Romans 6:23) What’s the gate that
leads to life? Narrow, right? (Matthew 7:14) Living right may seem
a little “tight on you” now, but it’s all a part of the process.
Just remember the next time the Enemy tries to tell you that you are
missing out on something that you ain’t. Common folks fall for the
okey doke. You are far too special for that.

common is what’s expected. Be the unexpected. That’s what being a
special person really and truly means.

what God had in mind when he made you.

R. Warren/2008