Monday, January 30, 2012

Not free to be just you and me

We were driving on an outing with my youth group in Jr. High.  The subject of soccer came up.  I laughingly said how horrible I was at soccer.  Our youth leader admonished me from the driver's seat. I shouldn't say things like that, she was concerned about my "self-esteem".  I replied (again laughingly) that my self-esteem was just fine, I was terrible at soccer but I had a genius IQ.  She was taken aback.  Later she expressed her discomfort with me "bragging" about my IQ in front of the other girls.

It was in early elementary school that we watched movies called "Free To Be You and Me".  I found them disturbing.  The catchy tunes were memorable.  But the messages didn't ring true to what I experienced as reality.  The idea that "you can be anything you want to be", that just didn't seem right.

As a young child I wanted to be a singer, a writer, and a ballerina.  I took dance lessons. When I was seven I realized that no matter what "they" said, I could not be a ballerina.  So I happily quit dance lessons, with my parents full support.  In 4th grade I sang in the children's choir and the school choir.  I noticed that though I "made" choir I was rarely chosen for solos.  I was impressed with the voices of others.  I realized though I could sing for fun, I wouldn't be signing any autographs. 

I so appreciate my parents.  I know they gently guided me in these areas.  They taught me to laugh when I tripped over my feet.  They taught me to celebrate my academic skills.  They taught me to appreciate those with talents beyond mine.  They help me discover my strengths and weaknesses, and I learned that some things could be both.

Somewhere along the way I learned that I was gifted, that we all are gifted.  God has created us with distinct abilities and callings. He has given us those gifts for His glory.  I  not free to be anything I want to be.  I need to be what He has called me to be.