I stood in front of my mirror. It seemed so strange that behind the round face staring back at me there was a person. “Who are you?” I asked my reflection. But she only smiled.
Who are you?
This is the question so many of us can never quite answer. We take online quizzes, we learn about personalities, we experiment with hobbies, but none of these can really show us who we are deep inside.
Your Heart And Your Desires
Humans are more than our behavior. We are hearts and souls with longings and passions. Matthew 6:21 says, “For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”
To begin the journey of understanding ourselves, let’s examine our longings. What do we seek? We’ll first look at three longings, and then address each question. Finally, I want to share with you how you can discover yourself.
Do you long to be unique?
Our culture values uniqueness: those who aren’t afraid to express themselves.
When I was younger, I wanted to be different. I didn’t want to be like the girls obsessed with the mall, nail polish, TV, and flirting. So I decided I was going to be different. I chose different hobbies (foraging, writing, sewing.) I decidedly chose how I spoke (direct, honest, sometimes brash.) I obstinately refused to wear the styles of those around me.
What I didn’t realize was that my longing to be different was really evidence of a calling.
Do you long to be cherished?
Have you ever watched a young girl lose her innocent ways? She was once carefree and happy, serving and loving those around her with radiant kindness. But now, you see the insecurity lacing her every step. Instead of allowing her personality to shine through, her mannerisms now reflect everyone else.
What happened? She began to listen to the world’s message: You will only be loved if you act like everyone else. Fit in, don’t stand out. Be unique, but not too weird. Attractiveness is better than kindness. Do this, or you will never be loved.
Do you long to be cherished? Every time we watch an old-fashioned love story, the romantic scenes touch us deeply, because, in the recesses of our hearts, we long to be loved unconditionally.
Do you long to be known?
Do you hide your heart away from everyone, even yourself? Do you look at yourself in the mirror and wonder who you are?
Dear Rose, there is One who knows you more intimately and deeply than you know yourself. He understands your weaknesses. He gave you your strength. He notices and grieves when you can’t seem to see the beauty of how He designed you. His heart clenches when Satan convinces you pride is the only path to accepting who you are.
For The One Who is Unseen: Take Heart
Dear Rose, whoever you are, the King sees you. The one on the outskirts of the crowd, feeling alone but never quite knowing how to bridge the divide. The one rejected again. The heartbroken one. The one lying awake wondering if anyone will ever really see you.
Rose, you are fully known by the King of Kings already. The One who shaped your heart knows it better than even you.
For The One Who Longs for Love: You Are Beloved
There is someone who wants you to believe that if you fail, God cannot love you. His name is Satan, and his desire is to keep us away from God.
If you have trusted in Jesus to take away your sins, do not let the enemy convince you otherwise! You are beloved, always.
You are cherished. Whenever you doubt that, remember the Cross. No one would ever do that who did not love you.
“To know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God. Now to Him who is able to do infinitely more than all we ask or imagine, according to His power that is at work within us, to Him be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen.” Ephesians 3:19-21
For the One Who Longs To Be Unique: Be Set Apart
Our longing to be different is a shadow of our calling to be set apart. When you see the shallow obsessions of this world, and long for more, it is because Christ longs to take us and help us reject the sinfulness of our old selves. He wants to transform and sanctify us, and He offers us a relationship with Him that is unique to us. If you want to be different, let Christ refine your longing into a desire to become like Him.
Find Yourself by Seeking Jesus and Losing Yourself
Have you ever read a book and wished you were the main character? She seems so assured of who she is. She always acts in character for herself. She knows how to talk. She always sounds like herself. She is unique. She is cherishable. When we look at a character from our outside perspective, they always seem so well-rounded. Their personhood is shaped.
But when we look inside ourselves and wonder who we are, perhaps we don’t see that same strength of character. We don’t really know ourselves. Yet before we start to wish to be that character, let me ask you-have you received your call to adventure yet? In stories, there is a moment when each character is given a choice, a quest, a task, a calling that they can choose to accept or reject. It is only once they accept that the perils of the journey refine their character and we come to respect who they are.
God calls us all to an adventure.
This holy call comes with the highest possible stakes-our eternal destination and the glory of God. Dear Rose, do you long to discover who you are? Embrace your calling! For when we embark upon our heavenward quest, trusting in God’s grace alone to carry us, we will finally discover who we are meant to be.
And we will answer, “I’m a daughter of the King, the One who saved me, sanctified me, and sustained me.”
Who are you?
Bethany’s name means “bright city on a hill.” This is her mission in life, to illuminate the beautiful things and shine God’s light where there was darkness. Bethany leads The Wilting Rose Project, a ministry of encouragement for young women who feel their struggles make them worthless. She writes fairytales inspired by her love of the forest, where she spends many of her mornings, soaking in the uniquely Minnesotan beauty. Her blog includes more personal documentation of her journey the last few years with Lyme disease and Toxic Mold illness and the journey of healing she is now on.