Here's another guest post for ya! I was planning on waiting to post it until the middle of the week because I have something on my heart I want to share, but I felt like the Lord was leading me to post it now. He seems to think you guys would rather hear from Madi than from me. And I have to admit...I agree with Him and you. ;)
Anyway, this is my sweet friend Madi writing below. I seriously love her heart and her wisdom. You will surely be challenged by what she's sharing. I told Madi after I read this that our God is so detail-oriented. He put this same concept on my heart a couple weeks ago. Not long after, I felt like He wanted me to ask Madi to write a guest post...and lookey here! She wrote about the same thing God share with me. I love it. God is so cool.
Okay I'll stop typing so you can read on. Enjoy!
Story #1: I can remember exactly what she was wearing. Probably because the day before, I was wearing it, too. My second day of eighth grade, and I was already the victim of an outfit stealer (or thief...whichever is grammatically correct). Now, I know you're thinking "Honey, everyone dresses the same in eighth grade. It's called conformism." Well, 1) in eighth grade, I did not know there was even a word called conformism, much less a fashion statement. 2) You've never seen my outfits from eighth grade. I was anything but a conformer. I wanted to stand out, to be different. It sounds kinda cool, right? Wrong. I wish I had pictures to show you. My favorite outfit was this white skirt I bought on a date with my Aunt Bonnie in Los Angeles (which is probably the biggest reason for it being my favorite). With the skirt I would wear a printed tshirt of some kind (usually bright colors), some mardi gras beads I got from my grandma, tall athletic (but colorful) socks, and my brown Doc Martins. I would sometimes put a belt or two (sparkly, for sure) around my waist and ALWAYS carried my books in my hands (backpacks were SO not cool). Complete the look with some bright blue eye liner and pearly pink lip gloss and I was ready to go. Again, I wish I could show you pictures.
So back to day one of eighth grade. I was sooo entirely excited to wear my first day of school outfit- I'm pretty sure I had it planned the entire summer. I wore my favorite white skirt (yes, this is a wardrobe staple), a lime green and hot pink striped half-button-up polo, tall white socks, my hot pink low top chuck taylors, and -the cherry on top- my dad's Fred Flinstone tie from 1992. Rockin. I know it seems like I was one of those trouble kids who want to rebel against anything society tells them is normal, but really, I just liked to dress weird. So day two comes around, and WOW I couldn't believe my eyes. I'm standing by my locker (top locker...just saying) when around the corner comes Outfit Thief with my first day of school outfit on. WHAT? Yep. White skirt, striped polo, tall socks, and pink converse. AND A TIE! My attempt to be different turned into an "oh-my-gosh-no-you-didn't-can-you-all-see-what-I'm-seeing-right-now-mean-girls-style" jaw drop. Ok wow, that was a dramatic exaggeration. In reality, I think I probably just noticed she was wearing my same outfit and pointed it out to my locker buddy and moved on.
Story #2...Outfit Thief is not the only copy cat in the world. Nope. I was one too at one point...ok several points. I wanted to be just like my cousin for a long time. I thought she was the coolest person who had ever been born. I cut my hair like hers, changed my favorite color to be purple, dressed like her, tried to sing like her, and EVEN (hold your breath) practiced smiling like she did. Baha- seriously...I was a freak. I would walk through the mall thinking "I hope I look like Anna right now" haha. Weird. Anyways- it didn't prove to be very rewarding. I wound up looking exactly like me.
Put these two stories together, and you have a point (either that or a yearbook and a stalker file). Here's the point, in case all you got was the yearbook...The great thing is- I was MADE to look, talk, think, stand, walk like me. And you were made to sit, breathe, run, dress like you! When I was eleven, I had a dream of becoming a jockey and riding in the Kentucky Derby. The thing is, at eleven I was 5'8" and weighed 126 pounds. Not really good for a career that limits you to 5'1" and 90 (80% of statistics are made up on the spot). However, I do know that I was in fact too tall and too heavy to be a jockey. No matter how hard I tried, or how long I practiced, or how bad I wanted it- I would never be 5'1".
Think about this- no one can be you. I'm going to say it again, because chances are, you've heard it before and when you just read it, you glazed over it and thought gee that's kinda corny or yeah that's what they all say. LISTEN! NO ONE CAN BE YOU. Here's another one YOU CAN'T BE ANYONE ELSE. I know that my stories were about middle school and eleven year olds, but this trend of discontentment follows us way into our adult years. Don't tell me you've never wished you could have someone else's body or boyfriend (or girlfriend) or house or car or dog or child or mother or father or talent or gift or relationship with God. Or at least that yours would be more like theirs. At times I've thought- man that person looks like they have it all put together. If I could just be them for a day, I'd feel better about life. If I could just get inside their head and know what it feels like to be them for a minute...I CAN'T. And thank the Lord that he made us so perfectly individual.
The Bible talks about the Body of Christ, and how we are each individual parts of a whole. 1 Corinthians 12 reminds us that the parts of the body are made for specific reasons. The eyes can't be noses, and the ears can't be feet, and the tongue can't be hair. If they were, we'd be a mess. Every single part of our body was created and placed perfectly for a perfect reason. Did you ever wonder why we have two ears and two eyes but only one nose and one mouth? ...me neither. :) Just kidding, I do (is that nerdy?). I wonder why we have one tongue and ten fingers and why our bodies are the same on both sides. Why do we have thumbs on our hands but not our feet? Well, the answer is that I don't know, but God does. He knows the purposes of our body parts just like he knows our purpose in the Body of Christ.
So plllleeeeaaassseee hear this...or I guess read this and let it sink in. You. Were. Created. Perfectly. With. A. PURPOSE. You might say "well, I don't know what my purpose is. Everyone has a better purpose than me. I don't have anything to offer." Yes you do. I don' t care who you are, what you've done, or what you haven't done. You are you, and no one else can be that. God doesn't just create people to be "extras" or "messups" or "that-one-guy-who-just-walks-around-aimlessly". You have a reason! Don't get caught up in the strata of purposes, measuring accomplishments and achievements. Just do what you are made to do. If you don't know, then ask. Our Creator is not deaf. He wants to lead you, to challenge you, to mold you, to use you. And when that happens, your purpose coincides with the purposes of everyone else who He is using. That's when we become the Body.
I feel like one of the beauty pageant girls on Miss Congeniality that can only talk about World Peace. HA sorry I just love that movie. My favorite part is the song- "you think I'm gorgeous, you want to love me..." yep. that one.
Anyways. I don't know if anyone ever tells you this, so I'm going to use my last sentence to do so. You are lovely, loved, worthy, worth it, beautiful/handsome, smart, useful, brave, and perfectly created. If you are telling yourself right now that those words aren't for you, then they especially are. This whole blog thing isn't just an online journal. Ok yes it is. But God can use online journals to reach directly to you...yes YOU. Your Creator wants to use you. Please let him.
You be you, and I'll be me. Then we can just be we.