Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Identity Part 2...

Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations- Jeremiah 1:5

Our identity shapes daily, it is not a set of labels we get to wear for the rest of our lives. Some labels stick from the moment we are born to our death. Some linger for so long we start believing we are what the world says we are. Sometimes, some of the labels acquired come from our struggles we develop through difficult times.  When this happens, we tend to hold on to these struggles for so long because we have become conditioned to the circumstances in our lives. 

Struggles

At some point in our lives, we tend to fall into a deep valley, it is so deep that eventually we give up on climbing back out. I know that is where I have found myself in the last couple of years. Falling into deep valleys of my life that I tend to stay there because I feel comfortable with those specific surroundings and the circumstances. The moment that the scenery changes I start to feel uncomfortable and questioning because things start to be unknown.

For the longest time I was comfortable just with an unhealthy relationship that was on and off for almost 7 years. At times it felt like I was single and at times I was doing more than expected to be in the relationship. Half the time I was being cheated on and I always turned a blind eye to the situation. The struggle in this was really big, especially since I had been with him for a long period of time. Every time that I would bring up something for discussion he threatened to leave me or told me that I would not find someone better in my life. That is when I would feel my weakest and would stay because I gave life to his words. Eventually the relationship ended, he had been dating someone for 6 months and told me a week after Valentine's Day. Of course I was crushed and I struggled with loyalty and faithfulness.  He identified me by my other struggle, codependent and that is what I was for the longest time, codependent of his approval, his will, his way disregarding myself throughout the whole time.



Who we want to be

When we forget who we want to be, we often forget what we wanted to do in our lives. Our identity is also composed of our hopes, dreams, goals, aspirations, inspirations, designed purpose, developing purpose, and our willingness to pursue our lives. Not one should outshine the other component of our lives, but very often expected one does outshine the other. I remember that for a long time, because of my work ethic, constant chaotic work places and never ending challenges, I was known to be a workaholic. Every conversation that I had was about work. But of course, why not? If I spent over 40+ hours at work, all I had to talk about is work. On weekends, getting together with my friends, the conversation always went back to work. The struggles, challenges, obstacles, lack of team work, big projects, future goals, etc. all work related. I was not doing other things that would help me grow as a person or my identity. Who I wanted to be was well rounded, who I was being was narrow tracked one lane driven. I didn't want to be the workaholic tied to the computer, checking e-mails on the phone and waking up in the middle of the night to send that last e-mail or thought to a deadline. I wanted to be the career woman, with a social life, inner peace and supportive network, that is who I wanted to be. 

Who we forget to be

Because we sometimes fall in submersion of our struggles and forget who we want to be, we also forget who and what we represent and who we should be. Who we should be is important in terms of our actions, our thoughts, our current and future decision and where we are rooted.

I attend a group on a monthly basis, organized by Christian women (the group does not exclude non-believers, if anything they are always welcome to attend). The group is called Women Rebuilding Women (WRW), their focus is to ignite the passion and dreams of women, by helping them create a healthy, supportive and safe community. During one of these meetings, we discussed the fruit of the spirit and how we are rooted. It was here that I had an epiphany. Sometimes, the fruit that we produce, is rooted from an unhealthy emotion, an emotion which can cause more harm than healing. I was rooted in arrogance and anxiety, where my actions would be done to get some recognition while fearing being rejected. I had forgotten to be authentic to who I was and to let God work on others instead of I working on others. In short, I was trying to do God's job.

I forgot that I was suppose to be me, and not an alternate version of God. I was not placed on this earth to replace him, I was placed on this earth to promote him, represent him and encourage others to find him. Who I am suppose to be is a child of god, seeking her purpose, reaching her dreams and goals but not at the cost if my identity nor taking God's identity. I'm to root myself in love and faith not in anxiety and arrogance, otherwise instead of being Godly and a good representation of a believer, I am being prideful and a representation of idolatry of my own image. 

And this has been my Aha moment...