Good morning! I’m sure you clicked on this blog post because the title made you think to yourself, “Wow! I bet this is going to be a supremely uplifting and educational type blog post! Spiritual supremacy shall finally be mine!” Okay…maybe not. It actually could have something to do with the picture of a dinosaur emerging from a muffin (which, in fact, has nothing to do with this post. I believe the kids are calling it “click bait”). But I do want to encourage you today as you march through whatever you’re facing in your life right now. So let’s talk about you…getting over yourself.
I’ve been thinking about me a lot recently. Stay with me…it gets better. You see, what I’ve been thinking is that there’s something significantly wrong with me. I struggle with stuff. I have a hard time getting over grudges and hurts and bad memories and hard days. Forgiveness and joy and perseverance do not seem to come naturally to me and if I look around at the world, it makes me feel like I am very, very weird and out of place (and a terrible Christian). But as I thought about this the other day, I had an epiphany as I compared me, a young woman who loves Jesus, to a friend of mine who also happens to be a young woman who loves Jesus.
My friend, we’re gonna call her Danielle, has an extremely sunny disposition and is kind and light-hearted most of the time. In conversation, she has shared with me that because of this she has had people call her fake to her face! (Come on southerners! We’re supposed to be doing that behind each other’s backs. What is this world coming to?)
If I were to compare Danielle and myself…I come off as a lacking Christian while she comes off as a faker. But here is what has started falling into perspective for me and I am hoping it will help (and liberate) some other people out there.
My pastor is fond of saying that God will not allow you to live a life where He isn’t necessary. And I believe the difference in our everyday personalities is a prime example of this.
My girl Danielle naturally gravitates towards a smile and chipper attitude. I see there is an easy trap in this personality type. It would be all too easy for “Christian” to be a title she puts on her good attitude and big heart without ever growing the deep roots it takes to make this faith thing work. It would be all to easy for the happy-go-skippy people of this world to lack depth.
But I know Danielle. I’ve talked to her and watched her struggle with some things and I’ve watched her dream big and work hard to achieve big dreams and I know she has proved her faith and continues to do it daily. I know she spends quiet time with God and really works out what she believes and doesn’t take any of it for granted. I know that God won’t allow you to live a life where He isn’t necessary and I see God using things in her life to bring her into a deep relationship with Himself. Our God is coming after her in ways that cause her to strain against her every day, fully genuine, joyfulness. He grows her against, through, and with the way He made her.
I quite often tend toward a darker side. I struggle with bitterness and anger. I ask the hard questions. I’ve hurt a lot in my past and it tends to come back to me over and over. I struggle with anxiety. I love my therapist because she’s sweet but also because I need her Godly and medical guidance to continue to grow and change and be someone who appreciates the sunshine (I love cold, rainy days).
But I know me. I’ve watched me laugh till I cry and bring smiles to other people on hard days. I know that I am growing in the way I deal with things by taking them to Scripture and to God in prayer and let Him show me things that bring me a kind of joy that goes far beyond the surface. I know that God won’t allow you to live a life where He isn’t necessary and I see God using things in my life to strengthen me to overcome my naturally pessimistic tendencies and learn to praise Him in the darkest of storms. Our God is coming after me in ways that cause me to strain against my everyday, fully-genuine, negativity. He grows me against, through, and with the way He made me.
My friend, I don’t know you. I don’t know your struggles, your joys, or your personality (maybe I do but for the sake of time)…but here is what I do know…I know that God won’t allow you to live a life where He isn’t necessary and if you watch closely, you will see our God pushing you to get over yourself. He has given you the personality that you have because He knows that leaning into Him, through and against your natural tendencies, will strengthen you in ways you could never be strengthened if you were like anybody else. I wouldn’t have grown the ways I’ve grown if I were like Danielle, and Danielle wouldn’t have grown the same way if she were like me, and the two of us couldn’t enjoy community together as much if there wasn’t such a vast range of knowledge for the two of us to share when we sit together. Danielle frequently lifts me up, and I pray I have been someone who sits with her when she’s down (and if you’re reading this, I hope we get to be that for each other for years to come).
So. Get over yourself.
Get over thinking that you are not as strong because you’re dark or not as deep because you’re bright. And if you aren’t the one thinking it…then get over themselves because they have no idea what God is trying to do through you! Just remember that God won’t allow you to live a life where He isn’t necessary. He made you just the way you are…so He can stretch you just the way He needs.
Let it be.