A friend and I were getting together after not having seen each other for a few years. She told her kids they were coming to see me and Brighton and she scoured my Instagram for a photo to remind them of who I am. When we met up she said she couldn’t find any photos of me. And she said, You know, you’re not just a mom, you have an identity apart from that. I laughed and said "I know, I know", but really ... I've forgotten.
I had Jon take a photo of me without Brighton and I felt SO awkward. I honestly didn't know what to do without my "accessory". Brighton has become somewhat of a security blanket. She is my way out of places I don't want to be, she is my excuse when I'm feeling introverted at the park and decide it's time to leave, she is my conversation piece when I don't know what to say.
Last week I stopped by Jon's work and ended up being a part of a Facebook live conversation about social media and I left feeling so excited because I felt like I actually contributed to society and participated in some real "adult" stuff. As soon as I said that out loud to Jon, I heard the Lord reminding me that raising a decent, Christ-loving human being is just about the most important "contribution" to society anyone can give. Ok God, I hear you.
I've always known I wanted to be a mom and as we came closer to starting our family I had a feeling that I would want to be home, but I also love writing so I knew that my dream world would be to stay at home while working as a writer. And here I am, doing that. What!? But the enemy is so cunning because he has continued to wage war on my sense of worth and identity. In every season it's something new, right? As a teenager, our worth and identity might be coming from the accolades we receive or how many people viewed our LiveJournal post (Xanga? Myspace? No?). In college, it might be our grades, then in marriage, we battle with our identity becoming wrapped up in our husband, and now as a mother, I have to fight to keep my identity from being too closely intertwined with my work and with my daughter. I am a whole woman apart from Jon and apart from Brighton. I love them both, and they have contributed a fullness to my life, but they don't complete or define who I am.
My identity is in Christ.
- I am fearfully and wonderfully made - Psalm 139
- I am His masterpiece - Ephesians 2:10
- I am justified and redeemed - Romans 3:24
- I am accepted - Romans 15:7
- I am set free - Galatians 5:1
- I am chosen - Ephesians 1:4
- I am forgiven - Ephesians 1:7
Do any of these strike a chord with you? As I read these over and over and "masterpiece", "accepted", and "chosen" keep standing out to me. It is SO easy in society today to feel like we are none of these things. Not enough likes, not enough followers, not enough friends, not enough invitations ... but God says I am His masterpiece, I am accepted, and I am chosen. So who CARES if I'm missing out on something? Who cares if that girl is doing something I'd like to be doing? God accepts me as I am and has chosen ME for a purpose. And that purpose is one that no one else was intended to fulfill. That is a serious pill to swallow, people. I need to learn to be faithful with (and grateful for) what is right in front of me so I can walk in that God-given identity and purpose.
My goal for 2018 was to live more simply and a big piece of that involved simply being me. A sort of stripping away of all the junk, the lies, the insecurities, the facades. That's the whole point of this blog: to talk about reality. I'm not a stylist, I'm not some sort of outfit of the day mom maven, food critique, or workshop hostess. I'm just a mom trying to figure it out and remember that it's ok to be "figuring it out". Despite our faults, despite our failures, even despite all of our accomplishments and praiseworthy moments, our identities have big, thick, gnarly, moss-covered roots that stem from an unchanging God.
Sometimes we all just need a little reminder that we a masterpiece, we are accepted, and we are chosen. Let's rest in that cozy bit of truth.