Out of its depths bubbles a definition. The words combine to tell me who I think I am. And it floats and it bobs right at the surface of me, always within arms reach.
In my weakness I reach for it, unsure. It reminds me who I was and what happened to me. It voices the disappointed whisper and feeds my reactions, responses, and fears.
But it's all a lie.
Like me, there are sweet, generous, redeemed people I have the pleasure of knowing and I see what they're doing, how they're living out of a definition. Because they can't see how beautiful they really are, how forgiven and loved. But to me they are precious gifts.
Why do we do this?
We define ourselves by the past, ignoring any growth, promise, or change. It becomes how we measure ourselves and the sum is always less than.
Any hope to edit or erase it means I have to know how I've defined me. When you-should-have-known-better meets you-don't-matter and I'm-not-good-enough, loved enough, worthy enough and you believe it — the undoing of that must be Divine.
I must accept a new definition, based on the truth of who I actually am or more importantly, whose I am. This is the hardest part because who can see their own reflection without the critique and the whisper returning?
I am defined by who I am today. And I am defined by the One who made me.
Believing this has to come through faith, even when I want to disagree, even when I don't feel like I matter. It has to be a constant, intentional decision to see myself through different eyes.
I may make mistakes. I may not be "the best." I may yell at my kids or get frustrated with my husband. I may say things, do things I regret. People may hurt me, might make it feel like I don't matter sometimes. The past may be a reminder of things that bring pain.
But it can live and stay in the past without me joining it. I can let those things go, if I believe I am new and dearly loved by the only One who matters.
So every day I must fight, against the whisper that says I am not, and define myself anew by the whisper that tells me I am.
"It's not what you say out of your mouth…(but) what you whisper to yourself that has the most power!"
Robert T. Kiyosaki
Update: What is your #LoveIdol? I'm linking up with Jennifer Dukes Lee, author of Love Idol, a book written to remind us all that we don't need to seek approval, validation, significance…love. God says, "You're already loved. You're preapproved." To learn more about this book and the Love Idol Movement, click here.