Five teenage girls...maybe sixteen years old...sat circled around a small cafe table. School was over for the day and their minds were full of the what had happened over the past 6-7 hours. Their eyes spoke of insecurities and expectations. Their words they spoke of comparisons and analysis of the girls who walked amongst them today at school. "Their hair...". "She wore...and always looks..." dominated the conversation. They spent over an hour of their time criticizing, analyzing, describing others. I listened as I worked. They sat in the cafe part of the grocery store where I work. We are close to the schools and are often a hang out place at the end of a school day. I was covering that area of the store this day. I wanted to pull up a chair and sit with them. I wanted to ask them about what those girls are like...not their looks, but their behavior and integrity. What were they like as a person? I had so many questions...why are you so fascinated to spend an hour of your day talking about the clothes, the hair, the boyfriends, the cars of these girls...an hour of their day.
They are teens...I know...this is normal. But why is it normal? It is normal at my age..at any age really. We want to compare. We want to analyze. We want to see if we measure up and fit in. Are we good enough? Do our clothes or hair look right? What will others think? So we break apart the other person...the one who seems like they have it all put together. What would they do? What would they wear? What would they eat? What boyfriend would they have? What do they drive? We want to emulate another person or group of people.
I remember in school wanting to be able to talk, act or dress like some of my friends. They were so outgoing and I was quiet. They knew how to have fun and I was afraid of trying things. They wore cute clothes and had cute bodies and I didn't know how to find my own style. They...They...They. I wanted to be like them. Not like me. I wanted different hair, a different body, a different personality. I wanted to be liked and accepted.
I wasted so much time wanting to be someone else.
God made me ME...for a reason. I didn't know that.
God made me ME...with a plan in mind. I didn't know that.
God made me ME...with brown hair and 5'5" with a size 8 shoe. He gave me blue eyes, a mole on my chin and the side of my nose. God chose for me to be born at this period in history. God knit me together with a careful design so that I could serve him in the way he wanted. But for so long, I wanted to be someone else and change this carefully designed body.
We aren't someone else. We never will be. We will always be the one that God created in the perfect fashion He chose.
Those girls...what if they could have spent that hour...talking about how they are going to use their gifts to serve others...to spend time with others...to do something for others...to speak edifying words over another person. We all can be like these girls...we want to huddle up at a table and see if everyone feels the same way.
God wants us to emulate Him.
Today I am going to focus on Him.
Today I am going to put aside my desire to be like someone else...and to be like Him.
Today if I speak about someone it will be words of encouragement.
God gave me a specific amount of time on this earth. I want to use it well.
The girls walked away and I have thought of each of their voices since then. I want them to know that they are perfect and they don't have to compare. I wonder if I wasn't working that day...would I have been so bold as to pull up a chair and had a conversation with them...an encouraging view in to who they really are...lovely young ladies created for a purpose.
Lord give me a spirit of boldness.
Lord help me speak truth and encouragement to those around me.
Lord help me see the truth of who you created me to be.
You were created for a purpose...perfect the way you are.