Unique

 

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Have you ever lived in such a way that you’re only being who you think people want you to be? It’s a hard thing to explain. It’s not that people make you behave a certain way, or force you into something you’re not. But it’s like there’s this unspoken pressure to fit in. ‘Fit inside this box that society has made for you’. ‘Don’t go outside that box’. ‘Don’t go against the norms of what culture says you should’.

As a Christian, I’m already used to being ‘outside the norms of culture’.  But I’m talking about more than that. Even in the Christian community, there are ‘norms’ that people are supposed to stay inside. And it’s not that people do this on purpose, it’s simply that because the average person is say ‘Inside the norm’, that’s automatically expected from everyone.

Mostly though, it’s living a life of trying to please people. But we can’t please everybody. In pleasing some we displease others, and vice versa. That’s why we are to please God above everyone else. Obviously we want to please those close to us, not let them down, etc. But we have to realize that pleasing and obeying God should be our number one priority.

I have realized lately that I have subconsciously been trying to be someone who the people around me will like. Not that there’s anything wrong with that, but sometimes we forget to truly be ourselves when we think people won’t like who we really are. It could even seem small and insignificant, something that doesn’t really matter, but if we are not true to ourselves, then who are we? If I am not true to myself, then who am I? It can be like wearing a mask. We pretend we’re okay in front of people, but inside we’re something else. Sometimes it’s a smile to hide a frown. Sometimes it’s a laugh to keep from crying. Yes, real men cry too.

Since when did we become this way? Trying to become like everyone else, we lose our own unique identity. God made each and every one of us different and unique. We each have a special role to play in the position God has put us in.

Sometimes I find myself wishing I had a relationship with God like so and so. While there are similarities with relationships with God that we all share, no two relationships are identical. Just like you have a friend who may have a bunch of friends, each one of their friends will have a different relationship with them just as you do. I’ve heard it said that God doesn’t love us each exactly the same, because He loves us each uniquely. We are all on different levels with Him. Different degrees of intimacy.

Some of us are just starting on our journey of knowing Him, while others have a deeper relationship. It doesn’t matter what level you’re on, as long as you’re pursuing Him, to know Him more. As long as you’re moving closer, as long as you’re progressing, that’s what really matters.

We are all unique. Just as there are tons of interests and personalities and things that make us all different and one of a kind, so does our relationships with God differ from each others. Just as there are similarities between us that make us all human, there are similarities with our relationships with God that make us all His children.

Lately I’ve been learning to be at peace with who I am. It’s the process of changing what I can, because I want to be better and more like the man God wants me to be. And accepting what I can’t change, knowing that He is ultimately in control.

Be transparent. Be who God made you to be. Please Him above all else, and everything else will work out. Don’t be afraid to be yourself. The right people will love you for who you are.

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The One Fear I’m Happy To Have

So I have a fear. Not a normal fear, like of heights or snakes or anything. While I do have some fears of that nature, that’s not what I’m talking about today. No, today, I’m talking about my greatest fear. The one that shatters all others. The kind that makes every other fear seem irrelevant.

It’s a fear I hadn’t come to know until more recently. With the hustle and bustle of life, and simply living life for that matter, we pick things up through that journey. We live and learn. We learn through experience and through the wisdom of others, about life.

Fear for instance, can often come from the unknown. We don’t know enough about something to have an opinion, so we come to fear it. Many people have a fear of death. Which is viable. I mean, let’s be honest. What more of an unknown is there than death? If I didn’t know what was after death I would be afraid of it. Even knowing about it I’m still afraid of it sometimes. But that’s still an example. That’s not the fear we’re talking about here.

The fear I’m talking about has to do with God. It is a fear of how EASILY it is to fall away. I used to think if you really ‘had it’, what could ever cause you to turn away? But you see it’s not that simple. Just because you ‘have it’ doesn’t mean you can’t ‘lose it’. Now it doesn’t happen all at once. And you won’t even know it’s happening. You just wake up one day and think, is God even real? Or is He just a fantasy I’ve been taught to believe? At that point all He has done for you is fading to a distant memory, and you wonder if it was ever even Him.

But that’s crazy! Right? Well you would think so, but it’s not. As you get into a state like that, you stop praying as much. It can be hard to pray when you don’t even know if who you’re praying to even exists. You can even still KNOW deep deep down within the very core of your being that HE does, but once that doubt is there, it can be hard to shake. And as you pray less it causes you to feel even more distant.

Once you’ve arrived to a state like that, you have to make a decision. Do you continue to fade back, until He’s just a distant memory. Or do you say no. I will push through this. I know the state I’m in, I know what I had, the peace, the moments of worship where I felt His presence, and I won’t give up! The choice can change your life forever. And not just forever on this earth, but forever eternally.

So once you’ve come back from something like that, you feel that peace once more. It doesn’t mean all your problems go away, or that everything will be perfect from here on out. But it does mean that NO MATTER WHAT COMES your faith and trust and hope is all in Him, and that He will be there for you, no matter the circumstance.

So now, you have a new fear, hopefully. It’s one I hope to always have. That’s the fear of straying. The fear of becoming less, than becoming more. The fear that says, “Oh how easy it is to lose sight of God! How easy it is to forget! How I don’t want that to happen ever again!”

-“The Fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and instruction.” Proverbs 1:7

I believe that fear talked about in Proverbs 1:7 could mean having a holy fear, a fear that I don’t want to be shut out from His presence.

I don’t want to ever doubt Him again. Because I know what it feels like to be distant from Him. And I don’t want to ever feel that Hopelessness again.

I’m learning that I can’t trust what I feel. Sometimes you may not feel like praying. Pray anyway. You may feel like worshiping. Worship anyway. You may feel far from God. Trust in Him anyway. Don’t let your feelings cause you to lose sight of your Savior.

Honestly

 

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Honestly, I have no idea what I’m doing. Life is such a funny thing.  We all start this journey called life, being allowed only one go at it. You get one shot, and then that’s it. No do overs.

Honestly, I’m tired of lying to myself. I’m tired of pretending like everything’s okay and great when it’s not. It’s not always okay. It’s not always great. Of course there are days that it is. Days where everything just goes my way and I’m full of pep and energy and ready to take on the day. But there are those days I don’t want to do anything but stay home and eat food and watch Netflix. I’m tired of trying to be perfect. I always try to say the right thing. Be the right person. Have all the answers. But I don’t. And I’m not.

Honestly, I love comedy. And that’s usually because I’d rather be distracted and laughing than to face whatever is bothering me on a given day. If I say something silly or stupid in a conversation it’s usually for the same reasons. I just don’t think I could survive without some humor here and there.

Honestly, when I’m in an awkward situation or something is brought up I don’t want to talk about, I play dumb. I usually just pretend to have no idea what anyone is talking about. On occasions I actually may not know what anyone is talking about, so it’s good either way. And if I’m not sure if someone is joking or not, I go along with it, which usually makes me look like I’m incredibly gullible. But that’s better than laughing at someone when they’re serious, right?

Honestly, I often wonder what people think about me. Do they like me? Or just put up with me. Do they think I’m naive or immature? How do they interpret the way I present myself and the way I respond to things? Maybe I’m just over thinking it.

Everywhere I go, it’s like I’m looking through a window. I can see everything and everyone, but I’m not a part of any of it. I’m merely a spectator.

Honestly, I often feel lonely. I have God, family, and some friends, and yet I still feel that way sometimes. It’s as if I don’t really belong anywhere. It’s like no one understands me. Everywhere I go, it’s like I’m looking through a window. I can see everything and everyone, but I’m not a part of any of it. I’m merely a spectator.

Honestly, I love deep conversations. I don’t even know how to explain what a deep conversation is, just that they exist, and I really enjoy them, although they are few and far in between. It’s always so good to have that person or persons you can go to and talk about anything with. It’s quite calming, and it helps tremendously to get things off your chest that you can’t talk to most people about.

Honestly, I have no idea how people live life without God. God loves me even in all my mess and confusion, and it’s crazy how much of a load that takes off. I know that I am nothing by myself, and that He’s the whole reason I’m here.

Honestly, the only thing that matters is you and God. Be true to yourself, and then you can be true to everyone else.