John Pearrell

There is a plethora of sites on social media where the participant has the opportunity to answer some questions and then they are told which Hollywood character or actor they are most like. For the most part I guess this is a harmless passtime, but I have to wonder if it reveals a dangerous trend. Let me explain.

I wonder if our obsession with being like a famous actor or a popular character reveals a hidden tendency to be unhappy with ourselves. King David, author of many of the Psalms found in the wisdom literature of the Jewish Scriptures wrote: “For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.” (Psalm 139:13–14, NIV).

If you struggle with your personal self-worth, you may be thinking (as I did for many years of my life), “God, if I am an example of your wonderful creativity, forget it! You blew it! There is no way I can trust you!” Perhaps you are unhappy with yourself physically, or maybe you were born with something you consider a defect, or maybe you are unhappy with the family you were born into and that unhappiness has resulted in a deep distrust of God.

Most of us forget that the author of these words in Psalm 139 was the runt of his family. When God sent Samuel the prophet to anoint a new king over Israel, David’s own father didn’t even consider his own son as a possibility for the position! Not only was he small, but some believe he was red headed, an oddity in Israel. These words are not the musings of someone who lived a charmed life!

When I was growing up I faced serious challenges myself. I was unusually small. In the first grade they had to cut the legs off my desk in an attempt to get my feet to touch the floor. I remember the custodian cutting the legs with a hacksaw as far as he could. My feet still didn’t reach the floor.

I also had a serious speech defect. No one could understand me when I talked, not even my parents. I spent from the first to the 10th grade in a special speech therapy class. I had other problems as well. The school system I was a part of sent me for psychological examinations, and I remember the psychologist coming to our home and speaking with my parents about a course of action they refused to take.

I was born well before the Roe v. Wade decision, but I remember my mother telling me once as a child that her doctor actually suggested that she end the pregnancy both for her sake and mine. Thankfully, she didn’t, and what the doctor said was a sure thing never transpired.

On top of all this I grew up as a minority in my environment. Small, backward in many aspects, unable to speak plainly, I was an easy target for my peers and spent a lot of time in the principal’s office for fighting. So, I didn’t like myself very much and was pretty sure God (who I believed in anyway) had somehow blown it with me. At 16 years of age, I actually climbed the railing of a high bridge over some railroad tracks with the intention of ending my life.

I tell you this because it was at that time that I discovered that God knew exactly what He was doing when He created me! No matter who you are, God knew what He was doing when He made you, you! You are “fearfully and wonderfully made.” Until you realize that and come to accept it, you will never have the peace you desire or discover the purpose God has for you.

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John Pearrell is founder and president of Impact Evangelistic Ministries and can be reached by writing to


I have been editor of the Rockdale Citizen since 1996 and editor of the Newton Citizen since it began publication in 2004. I am also currently executive editor of the Clayton News Daily, Henry Daily Herald and Jackson Progress-Argus.

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