Such a heavy word with slightly different meanings in many different career fields. Most of these definitions boil down to some form of approval or recognition of status; for instance, in psychology, it is the inherent human need to have our thoughts, beliefs, emotions, experiences and behaviors understood. It’s a desire to be approved and accepted for who we are, and who we portray ourselves to be. Validation is a key component of our development as children, both seeking external validation from others, and the self-validation that we learn to cultivate throughout our life experiences.
In the University sector, validation is simply the process of approving and confirming the requirements of a student’s account are fulfilled and all associated costs paid. At the beginning of every semester, each student is responsible for making sure every item that is required has been completed for validation that semester. Without a validated account, a student is not officially enrolled, and will encounter many problems with classes, among other things. If a student comes in with an issue, one of the first questions is always “Are you validated?” as many times, there are uncompleted items that need to be addressed before the student can move forward with ease.
As with those students, we spend a great amount of time trying to ensure our validation in the university of life. We spend our early years checking off task after task trying to gain acceptance and approval, only to, many times, still feel unfulfilled and just plain not good enough! Ugh, that’s a terrible feeling! To do our very best and it’s still not good enough; to feel messy and just plain worthless. Even with huge victories and blessings, we still feel empty. Where is the validation that we long for? What components are we missing to our validation? Where do we go when we aren’t able to validate ourselves with the same things any longer?
There is one form of validation I have not mentioned, and personally, this is the most important source of validation I have, especially as a believer: validation in God. The endorsement and support of God has proven to be the strongest and most powerful form of validation in my life. Even when I feel conflicted in my own experiences and emotions, I can rest solidly in the security of God and who HE is in my life, and through Him, I am affirmed! In the university of life, I believe there are three ways we are validated through God, there are three ways in which we are satisfied and fulfilled in God’s divine purpose for our life and reaching our full potential. The three A’s of Godly Validation : Admission, Acceptance, and Advancement, let’s explore these three concepts.
Admission: In a public university, any one is welcome to seek admission. Many popular universities weed through tens of thousands of potential applicants each year to find suitable candidates. God has also opened the ability to have admission to every person, through the invitation to salvation from our sins. It is freely given and it is available for all. Romans 6:23 indeed calls it a “gift”, meaning we did nothing to deserve it, yet it is given. In God’s book of life, we each have a full ride to the privileges of eternal life through the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. There is nothing we can do to add to or take away the validation , or payment in full, on our accounts that Jesus has completed on our behalf some 2000 years ago. That’s it, application fee paid, application filled, and a full scholarship just waiting for us, just because of love!
Acceptance: Although admission is that the college allows all applications, not every person that is offered admission actually accepts or confirms their attendance or chooses that particular college. Similarly, not every person who is offered salvation accepts the call or desires to be saved. Salvation through Christ is offered and available to all, yet so many, either don’t believe at all, or believe in something else. That’s why acceptance is a portion of our validation as believer, as our faith should be the absolute most important facet of our life. There is no drawn out process to salvation. Once we believe in our hearts in Jesus Christ and his resurrection, and confess with our mouths, Romans 10:9-10 says we are saved! Not just saved from sin, but saved from an eternity out of the presence of God. We are NOT required to be perfect students to accept our invitation, God calls and validates our faith just as we are. He loves us just as we are, He believes in us, just as we believe in Him. The bill is paid in full by admission and with acceptance you’ve got all the books and materials we’ll need with the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. Bags packed and ready to go!
Advancement: Admission and acceptance have to do with the foundation of our faith, through the love displayed by Jesus in his death and resurrection and our faith and acceptance of the gift of salvation God offers us. Advancement is the fruit of that faith. At a school, the final part of validation is making sure students are either successfully registered for classes and are maintaining a proper GPA in classes in order to successfully continue progressing toward graduation. In faith, our advancement is found in our fellowship with God, our spiritual maturity, and daily sanctification. Now that we’ve accepted Jesus, everything in our lives is expected to begin to flow from that faith and cornerstone. The Bible says after salvation we are to “set your minds on things above…” (Colossians 3:2) and ” do not be conformed to this world…” (Romans 12:2) That means that even though we are called to salvation as we are, once we accept Christ, we should no longer be seeking validation in the same places we once did; in those temporary things of the world. We are already validated by Christ. We are called to continually be students and grow in faith and love. We should be displaying our faith and living our faith. Trusting more and spending time in prayer and bible study with God. Finding other Christian friends for accountability, as well as a church home where you are able to serve and be fed spiritually are key. We are called to be witnesses and doers of the word, meaning our actions should always be pushing toward the example Christ gave us. We should be sharing our testimonies and exemplifying Christ everywhere we go. Through this security of validation in Christ and continual growth, we are able to more successfully find a secure self validation within ourselves! Advancement has us in class, meeting with our advisors constantly doing the work to reach the level of graduation!
When we are validated within ourselves and especially in God, as opposed to seeking it in titles, or assets, or addictions, or outside relationships, it enables us to be happier spouses, parents, siblings, friends, workers,, Christians and visionaries. When we have admission, acceptance and advancement in God, the university of life becomes much less stressful, because we have the knowledge that the One who created life, God, has EVERYTHING lined up for our good! So the next time we begin to feel depleted, or worthless, or alone, when we start to feel that no one understand and nothing is ever good enough, we believers are able to affirm ourselves that we are validated! We have admission and sought acceptance, and are continually advancing toward our eternal reward in God. He knows, He sees, we are not forgotten, and in HIM we are loved, safe, and secure.
Are YOU Validated?