I’ve been thinking a lot lately about the discrepancy between how people see themselves and how we see ourselves… it all started with a Facebook post back on January 1st. I posted how boring I was because rather than stay up till midnight I went to be early and slept through “ringing in the New Year”. A comment came back saying I was the least boring this person knew, that I was vivacious and alive, engaged and energetic.
(???SERIOUSLY???? I don’t think so, I’m really rather boring.)
Recently I’ve been told that I’m “nice” – it’s a genuine affirmation after I guess what could been seen as a kindness. My response is pretty much always, “no, not really”. I don’t mean it to be flippant or that I’m a total meanie-butt. . . . but really, I don’t think so.
Another example is my daughter. I see her as compassionate, delightful, determined, and funny… (I could go on. If you want to read all about it, check out Nov 18th post.). Her response, “I wish I knew her, she sounds awesome.” I wanted to scream, “BUT IT IS YOU, ALL YOU”
I don’t understand the discrepancy. Its not that I want to feel all puffed-up and self important at how fabulous I am. . . It just seems. . . . hmmmmm. . . . . . . inconsistent. I don’t like inconsistent.
I’m not sure there is an answer here… cuz I’m really not nice (you should hear the commentary that goes on in my head) and I really am boring (I’d rather sit at home, in the quiet and knit than go out and be with people). Yet somehow, in the realm of the miraculous when I’m with people… really WITH them… something different happens. I’m engaged, I’m ‘nice’. . . . . it’s really what I to be. . . . no, it’s WHO I want to be. . . .
Cameo asked me the other day, “Is who we want to be really who we are?” Good question. I didn’t really have an answer, so I texted back “probably”. My head was saying, ‘I sure hope so’. Talking to Tim about it, he said, ‘yes’, “it’s who God wants you to be too. And He created you to be that.”
And then there’s that verse – I think it’s in Phillipians – God works in you to WILL and to DO His good pleasure. So there it is, maybe that’s the answer. . . . God created us, a hard-wired temperament in our brains, He places us in homes and provides us with experiences that affect us, but we are all tainted and disfigured. A chaotic mess, a black hole of pain and sin, weakness and yuck (there’s no better word)
. . . . but. . . . . if we are still. . . . . and if we listen and surrender….. He will heal us and mold us, shape us. Holding our temperament, our experiences our pain and weakness gently, ever so gently. He kneads us adding the water of His extravagant lavish love, His tenderest mercy, His enduring strength. He creates something that transcends to the realm of the miraculous. . . . and then, in us, the tiny seed of desire begins to sprout and as He continues to heal the desire grows. . . . and in the shadow of mystery and miracle. . . . . the fruit of that healing becomes nourishment for others…
and we become what we desire to be. . . . not through our striving. . . . but through miracle. . . . and the true beauty of it all lies in the fact that we don’t see it in ourselves, or feel it. . . . but ARE it anyway, despite ourselves.
I’m going to end with a little story.
Last Wednesday at Prayer Meeting, I sat on the floor with sweet Piper (she’s 3 years old). We coloured and made pictures with stickers. Dressed Minnie Mouse and drew more pictures of caterpillars and ladybugs. . . I didn’t do it to be nice, it wasn’t hard, it took no effort. . . . I just did it (it helped her Mom concentrate on Prayer Meeting and I was still able to listen and interact too). Towards the end of the meeting Piper leaned over – I thought she was going to whisper something in my ear as she had done a few times already – but instead… her little lips touched my cheek…..in the realm of the miraculous…. the moment transcended to a different plain, an unseen reality……… a sweet kiss from Heaven