For a very long time, I have fought for acceptance by doing things for others. I would bend over backwards, forwards, and sideways to try and get people to accept and appreciate me even just a little bit. Can you say people pleaser?! Every relationship left me drained and hurting–because people never knew who I was; they just used what I knew how to do.
Here I am now, 43 years old and just now learning how to appreciate myself—the unique gifts and talents that God has given me to do stuff that others don’t know how to do; the anointing that He has placed on the words that I write; the grace He has given me of discerning motives and minds so that I can help people. But more than what I can do, God has begun to refocus me on who I be.
It’s a hard thing to separate what you do from who you are. Almost as soon as you are able to pull a face or make a sound, folks begin to catalog what all you can do: does she dance? Will he sing? Does walking this early mean we have an athlete on our hands? Can we consider that ability to count and categorize blocks as the sign of math genius? Listen. I’m a mom. We all do it. We all see the potential, the possibility in the kids around us and boom! We have a list going that follows the child around for life.
But what if that isn’t God’s way. What if God’s way of seeing us doesn’t tally up all the things that we can do but rather umbrellas all those things under who He made us to be? How much easier if a time we’d have then, huh?
The image of Himself that God gave me seems weird when I look at it from a “normal” standpoint. But through the eyes of God, it is just right: I am myself, and that is what God requires of me. To be anything less makes it bitter for me to love others fully because incompleteness is just another way of saying “serving from an empty cup.” And more importantly? It is a reminder that serving from a full cup isn’t good enough either: your cup has to be overflowing.
What has filled you is for you; you serve those from what overflows.
More on this later. For now? Sit with it.