All is for your glory
Two years, was what it took for God to fix my eyes on Him. I guess I’m an extremely slow learner. For the past two years since graduation, I’ve only worked for 6 months in a full time job. The other one and a half years was spent freelancing, and basically doing nothing. Yes, I sound like a failure honestly, I get by day to day, I have no savings, I don’t know what to do with my life, I spend most of my mornings and afternoons at home while others work. And hola, I’m 22 years old.
Yet ever since I could remember, my life was packed with achieving things. From studying, to dancing, to church, to family; all areas of my life was me trying to prove to the world that I am ‘good enough’, that I am ‘talented’, ‘look at me I can balance all these areas of my life and excel and look like it’s a breeze while doing it’. Well, this is the culture we grew up in, and if we fall behind just for a step, we don’t get noticed, and that is the most horrible feeling ever.
Just this weekend, my cousin (who’s 13) showed me a picture of her friend and asked me if she looked pretty. And here’s how the conversation went:
Cous: Is she pretty? (passes me her phone with her friend’s picture in it)
Me: She looks normal. So-so lor.
Cous: Then why does she have 17k followers on Instagram? (turns away to continue scrolling through her insta)
Cous’ Mum (who was there through this whole conversation) : She is always so concerned about her Instagram, and she will always complain about having “only 5 likes for the past 5mins”, compare herself with her friends…
Well this is not a rant of how materialistic teenagers are getting now, or that they do not see how big the world is aside from ‘likes’ from social media. Honestly, my heart broke for her, because this is the world she was born into. Where worth is based on how you look, dress and perform on social media platforms. To us who are older and have lived without days of wifi and internet, their worries are childish and small. But to them, this might just affect how they view themselves in this critical age of growing up and finding themselves.
Which led me to think “what about the world I was born into”? I’m sure degrees and diplomas didn’t even matter at a time. I’m sure earning much and saving for a roof over our heads wasn’t the reason why people lived in a time in history. I’m sure getting a good looking talented other half doesn’t give you ‘street cred’ a thousand years ago. And if all these doesn’t matter, all these things I am chasing for, better qualifications and better way of life and looking good, THEN WHAT THE HECK AM I LIVING FOR.
It took God two years, to bring me to a place where I could do nothing for myself. Of literally nothing. I woke up for almost a month every morning with nothing on my schedule (that hasn’t happened in years). I was forced to confront this emptiness within me that I have unknowingly pushed back with many meaningful, churchy, good things. They are not wrong, but too many times we are thrown with wave after waves of activities, of people to “disciple”, things to lead, that we forget what it feels like to really be seeking the will of Jesus. When God forced all these away from me, I woke every morning just sitting at His feet and asking Him for the exact things to do. Should I go out? Where should I go? Who should I text? Should I look for a job? What is on Your mind? Should I intercede for this person? Should I eat? Every detail of my life was dictated by Him. If He says stay at home and do nothing, I stay. If He says don’t eat because I don’t need it, I don’t. There was no questioning. I’ve learnt how to flow with His spirit, to enjoy just His presence and want nothing more.
In His presence I found the me that I hold on to slowly melting away under His love. In His love I literally lose myself. I once wanted people to see me as capable, independent, witty, humorous, talented.. the list goes on. My identity gets affirmed every time someone affirms me in those areas, or tells me those characteristics were what they thought of me. Problem is, those were not what God made me to be. He was calling me to Himself, to see how He created me to be, to see the dreams He has knitted into me before I was in my mother’s womb.
It can only make sense when we experience the overwhelming love of God. I am safe to be gentle to the people around me because He is my protector. No longer do I have to build up walls or speak with ‘spikes’ to protect myself. I am safe to dispose so much joy and love and belief in others without the fear of receiving none back because He is the source of my love and joy and hope. I am not XinRu/Beatrix anymore, yet I am so much more like XinRu/Beatrix now, because He allowed me to lose and find myself in Him.
Oh may I never lose the wonder