Home > Christianity, Identity, Personal, Thoughts > Still searching for an identity… part 2

Still searching for an identity… part 2

November 30, 2009 Leave a comment Go to comments

Guilt.

I suffer from the guilt of existence. I’d feel guilty if I had a child before some of my friends I know who have desired children for years. Especially since I also know they desire children so much more than me.

And the ability to stay home and live primarily off my husband’s income so I can devote my time and attention to my novel (which I have no idea whether it will be any good or be able to earn any money). I have so many friends and family members who do not have this opportunity. I feel bad. Something tells me I must work full-time like them to make life fair even though I don’t have to.

It’s not fair that people who want to live must die when there’s someone like me who thinks so little of herself that she would trade places with someone who was dying.

I wait every night, you know, to die.

I’ve given up on suicide because I’ve tried numerous times and I can’t succeed. People tell me it’s because God says it’s not my time to go.

So every night, I wait for God. I wait for Him to take me. I anticipate “my time to go.” That final breath, that final gasp of air that God won’t let me recover from. I wait for it nightly.

But then I wake up each morning, somewhat stupefied as to why I’m still alive. What’s God’ s purpose for me? Am I meant to accomplish something monumentally great or simply exist to bring a smile to my husband’s face each day for the next 60 years?

And what’s wrong with that? Why can’t I be content simply to exist only to make other people happy?

“I tend to be of the mindset that in order to be pleasing to God, I have to do something big, something that leaves an evident footprint in the world. I think deep down I know this isn’t a true philosophy, but when I just live everyday life, I feel useless.” –Sizzledowski, “Sometimes I talk to myself… a lot

No, I’m not content because I’ve been taught that “bigger is better.” (Well, except when it comes to weight.)

Servant leadership.

My father used to work in the maintenance department of a large ad agency and sometimes he’d get whatever leftovers were no longer wanted. One time, the agency developed (or recycled, I’m not sure) a slogan and printed up more T-shirts than they could use so my dad brought a bunch of them home. The slogan has stayed with me to this day:

“Good enough is not enough.”

So I’ll always feel like a failure. Because once I achieve that one “great” thing, I’ll always be looking for the next great thing. It’s a vicious cycle–always looking to outdo myself. This was also part of Michael Jackson’s downfall. As a perfectionist, he was always trying to “top” himself. The “Thriller” album sold 26 million copies worldwide back in the 80s, immediately becoming the best-selling album of all time. In fact, it is STILL the best-selling album of all time with more than 100 million copies sold worldwide. (The next album that comes even close is AC/DC’s “Back in Black” with 49 million copies.)

“Good enough is not enough.”

Jackson wanted to continue to break records and continue to top the charts even after “Thriller” but was never able to relieve that kind of success again in his lifetime.

So where does it stop? A person can’t always be number one.

Jesus said the first shall be last and the last shall be first. (Mk. 10:31, Matt. 20:16) As a Christian, what does this mean to me?

It means the only way to truly lead is by serving. That is what Jesus did. And not to minimize my Lord in any way but that is also the example all the great human heroes followed: Ghandi, Martin Luther King, Jr., Mother Teresa. Not self-serving but serving others. Who will have had more of an impact 100 years from now: Madonna or Martin Luther King, Jr.? God bless Madonna if history textbooks mention her musical impact from the 1980s but MLK, Jr. has changed the lives of many people in this country. From the White House down to little ol’ me, he continues to have a lasting impact beyond his death. As a result of MLK, Jr.’s tireless work, I can write a blog post with fairly good grammar and spelling that reaches a multicultural audience because I had the opportunity to receive a stellar education from Kindergarten through college. (Let’s just conveniently ignore the fact that the last sentence was atrociously written, though.)

The world says to be number one and never settle for last place. My Lord says the first shall be last and the last shall be first. The world says take the lead; be a leader. Jesus says, “Follow me” (Matt 4:19); be a servant (Jn. 13:12-17).

With things like pride and self-sufficiency (really a subset of pride), being a true, consistent servant is difficult:

  • Never seeking glory for yourself.
  • Always doing things for the benefit of others.
  • Constantly knowing your limitation so you can ask for help for the sake of others.

Not easy.

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