Tuesday, June 22, 2010

running MY race


i've been reading my devotionals these last couple of days, and the main themes have been about being confident as an original and running MY race, not the race of others. man! that really struck a chord, touched a nerve, made me think.

i am 35 years old. you'd think by now that i had a clue about life, that i'd be more confident, that i'd know where i belong, and...yet...well, here i am.

i've spent most of my life feeling like, if anywhere, i belonged in the land of misfit toys. i never felt like i belonged. i spent most of my youth feeling like GOD had made a mistake. you see, my younger sister died when i was almost 9. i maintained that GOD had taken the wrong sister, so i felt like i didn't belong on this planet or even in my own family. i never felt like i fit in at church. i was always the controversial one who challenged and questioned everything and everyone. though some considered it rebellious, i knew it was due to my inherrant desire to understand the "why" behind everything, my quest for knowledge and understanding. i never wanted to blindly follow. to me, that's dangerous. and as an adult, i've searched intently to find "home," the place where my heart ceases to feel restless.

i've never really felt comfortable in my own skin. i've doubted my decisions. i've struggled with what to do with my life. and i think i now understand why. i've spent most of my life's journey running someone else's race. i have cared too deeply for the opinions and acceptance of others.

i am to run MY race, walk MY journey, follow MY path. there will i find "home." there will my heart find rest and peace and confidence.

i tried to get up early and read my BIBLE and pray for an hour because i was told it would make me more like JESUS. that was someone else's race. i'm a night owl, and i can pray only sentences at a time.

i tried to volunteer all my time and talents at church because i was told it was my spiritual obligation. that was someone else's race, i suppose. it sure wasn't mine. i never got to be light in the world because i never got to be in the world.

i tried to dress a certain way, think a certain way, not act a certain way...all races belonging to someone else.

i tried to be supermom. all that got me was overextended, tired, and run-down. i learned that the word "no" was my best friend. supermom was not my race.

i went to school to be a musician because others expected me to go that route. i felt guilty the day i quit. though i knew that staying at home with my kids was where i wanted and needed to be, i felt like i was disappointing others. i felt like such an underachiever. but being a mom...that was MY race.

and my decisions today...that's MY path. it's okay to question. it's good to think for myself. it's acceptable to like who i am and who i am not. it's okay because GOD made me an original. who i am is beautiful to GOD, and i can be confident in that. in his eyes, i'm pretty and perfectly imperfect just the way he intended me to be. he has a journey planned out for me. i don't have to follow anyone else's. what others do is great...for them. but i need to run my race. and the more i do, the more at home my heart feels. my footsteps have been ordered by GOD.. not by family, friends, or society. whew...what a relief!

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