Someone shared this quote yesterday on Facebook – not to me specifically, but it sure felt for me specifically:
You CANNOT lead what you fit in with! Leaders always stand out from the crowd!
– T.D. Jakes
I have spent much of life trying to do the opposite. Whether by begging my parents for Velcro shoes in 2nd grade, or an I.O.U. sweatshirt in junior high, or to drive to school my senior year, or to live with my boyfriend when I was just 19, I was always attempting to do things that were 1) Not important, 2) Not accessible to me, 3) Not in line with the values/priorities I was being taught to keep.
I’d like to say that adulthood automatically made this tendency melt away, but it did not. Instead, I all-too-often find myself battling the need to “fit in,” to “feel comfortable,” to feel accepted or acceptable… when really, the call on my life – and on any life which follows Christ – isnot to go with the flow… but to stand out, be uncomfortable, and if so called, to blaze a new trail.
I am once again finding myself at a transition point… nothing dramatic, but a shift nonetheless. I can chose to make myself comfortable, to follow what the status quo looks like for a person my age, my gender, my family status, my skills (if such a status quo even exists!)… or I can go with my own “stick out like a sore thumb” flow.
I’ve chosen the latter. I don’t know what it all looks like yet, but I am excited.
He put his mark on us to show that we are his, and he put his Spirit in our hearts to be a guarantee for all he has promised. 2 Corinthians 1:22
It’s time to embrace the weird – which I have done before – but to do so without looking back.
In the spirit of thankfulness, I am thankful, so thankful, for some mentors in my life who reiterate the good words and the Word to me when I forget them. Where would we be without people who see the best in us and remind us it’s there, while at the same time see where we need growth and are able to honestly communicate with us? I know where I would be… cowering in a corner somewhere. But thank God! – He has blessed me with sister and brothers, some my peers, some older, some younger – who serve this purpose in my life. Because of them, I know how to do the same for others as well.