If we are not all the same, why do we have the same expectations of one another?
“Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you; I appointed you a prophet to the nations.” “Alas sovereign Lord,” I said, “I do not know how to speak; I am too young.” But the Lord said to me, “ Do not say, “I am to young.” You must go to everyone I send you to and say whatever I command you.
Looking at this verse, I am reminded by our Father how each of us are formed individually and uniquely to His specifications. Is that not a beautiful thought? He took the time to pre-plan exactly what each of us would look like, what our personalities would be, what path we would walk and how we would play a part in His Kingdom. He specifically took time to make each of us uniquely perfect in His eyes for His purpose and His plan.
In my life, throughout school, adolescence, parenting and finally now becoming an adult (hehe!), I have always experienced, to a certain degree, the need to fit the mold. I am sure many can agree that there is always a level of expectation on people to be a certain way in order for them to fit in. For those of us who are a little different, and I include myself in this category because I know we are ALL a little different in some way, it is sometimes hard to go through life always having to be something or someone that you are not in order to fit in; especially because if you don’t, you might not get into the “in” crowd – The “in” crowd at church, the “in” crowd in the band, the “in” crowd in a sport, and even the “in” crowd at work. There is always so much emphasis on being noticed and being “in” or being ‘like” the others. But why can’t we be like God created us – Uniquely different and proud that we were created for the very purpose of being unique for the growth of His Kingdom?
Raising little girls in this day and age is quite different to when I grew up. It has taught me so much about myself and how I handled life as a child, a teenager and how I handle it even today. I have experienced, seen and grown to notice how we, as women, change at various times. You ALL know where I am going with this… Hormones… And how blind we are to our own faults. We’re always looking to blame others for our own insecurities and issues. We go through times when we are overemotional, crying about anything, taking offenses left, right and center to things that were never meant in that way.
As a preteen, when it all starts, the first people who seem to offend us the most are our mothers! Oh man! And can we give them a hard time about not understanding why their sweet, little girl has become a little dragon overnight, why we have become quiet about things, rolling our eyes at opinions, shouting at advice given, only taking advice from other moms and not believing that their own moms also went through the same changes and through pretty much the same things. And all moms try to do is protect, guide and love while going through their own hormone issues (hehe). Yet, with all the chaos, the preteen can’t see this and neither can the mom because we are so focused on ourselves rather than seeing the bigger picture and showing the love, grace and understanding for each other as God does for us.
Preteens also tend to not understand that their friends are feeling the same… unable to understand what is happening and how to deal with the fact that their friends are in a similar position, but all unable to take their eyes off of themselves and their own issues. In turn, it’s a manic time of hurts and betrayals, fighting and discussing each other, causing gangs and groups to unknowingly bully each other without even realising it. While the stronger come-off somewhat unscathed, all the kids get affected. There is no specific mold, yet we all want to fit into it?
Then we get the adolescent years, from 18-30; The OVER-sensitive time when women over-analyse everything. The time when someone in the shops walks past us and our minds go off on a tangent of questions as to why that person did not greet us? Did I say something? Did I do something? Does she not like me? Did someone say something to her about me? What did I do wrong? We even start discussing it with others! When people are chatting and you walk up to them and there is silence, we automatically think it’s about us!? Really? Are we that insecure that we think everything should be about us? They could have been speaking about their own personal issues and we automatically think it’s us… it’s our personal insecurities and when we allow our head to get in the way, it only starts a string of issues.
We feel everyone should have the same sense of priority in life. Maybe, just maybe, that person is having a really bad day and it actually has nothing to do with us at all. People all have their own personalities, minds, souls, needs, wants, interests, styles, hearts, and likes. I am terrible at dates and birthdays – It’s not that I don’t care, it’s just that my head can’t seem to remember things as well as it used to. I work extremely hard at work and I possess the initiative to grow businesses. I have always had 1000’s of ideas and words in my head, I write, I sing all the time, I worship and I am creative. God gave me each special part of who I am because HE wanted me to be this way. I just think my brain is too full to remember stuff.
Am I tidy and do I clean? NOOOOO! I am useless at that and always have been. It doesn’t appeal to me. I just seem to make things untidy. I don’t mean to but somehow I just don’t think about those things when my head is too busy with other things. BUT, I work VERY hard at what I am good at and in what I do for a living. Does that make me a dirty person? No, it just makes me a person who knows my strengths and works at them to grow them and build them, practice them and do the best I can in them as a talent God gave me to honour Him. I will only clean and pack if I have to!
Do I expect others to do everything that I do? Not at all! Take my staff for example; I could NEVER have a salon if it was not for the people who work for me. They are amazing in all the things I am not! I am somewhat (I know I shouldn’t say it,) envious of all they can do. But because they are all so different, we are able to work together and fill each other up in order to make up our very own Rare Beauti puzzle. I don’t expect them to do what I do – I only expect them to do what they do and to the best of their abilities. Can I work with business books and finance? NOOOOO! I hate accounting and it hurts my brain! Can Liesl do acrylic nails? No, she does not have any urge to do it. We are all different and that’s how it’s supposed to be. In the end, we all make up one big body for Christ’s Kingdom.
Now like I said earlier, I have finally grown up and become an adult at the age of 36… I think. Understanding life a little better each day. And as I walk through this life with our Father God, He shows me a little of His heart each day and how it hurts Him to see His children so unhappy and with such low self-esteems; that we would want to fit into each other’s molds and also expect others to fit into ours, even though He took so much time to make us different and special. Even as adults, we go through fits of ‘hormonal crazy’ (I dare to call it that). We are unable to take our eyes off of ourselves and our own paths of need; we become unable to see the devastation around us. We fight and bicker because of irritability within ourselves that we can’t explain, but we just know that what OTHERS do to US is unfair, never mind what we are doing to them. Oh our poor husbands/wives(yes, men you also have hormone fits)! Our partner gets the brunt of it. Don’t tell me you haven’t felt that some days the mere chewing at the table makes you feel like you could throw all the dishes off the table and throttle your partner (hehehehe sorry I saw it in my head!). You sometimes have no idea how to handle it or how to keep your irritation levels to yourself without making everyone around you feel insecure about their mere existence, causing a ripple effect of ‘self’ issues all around you. Well, if you haven’t, I sure have. Just the other day, everything about my family and work irritated me so much. I was snappy, angry, emotional, and down-right nasty to everyone. Finally, I realised that it is no one else’s fault, it was just how I was feeling. So I told everyone that it was one of those days where I just needed space. I got back into bed after making sure everyone had things to do, and started writing, reading, praying and spending time with our Father alone behind a closed door. I found myself being wrecked at His feet, just the special time I needed to later emerge refreshed, refilled and refueled with the Holy Spirit. His grace and mercies shook back into place in my mind after a good, solid time in my secret place. Sometimes it’s safer than to cause everyone to feel uncomfortable around you. It’s better to remove yourself from the problem and just spend time with the one who loves you most of all, Your Creator.
When I grew up, there were no such things as cellphones where people could Whatsapp each other messages until all hours of the night. There was no evidence of harmful messages sent, or after-hour bullying once you were supposed to be in the safety of your bed. There were no texts that could be misconstrued into messages taken through offenses formed in our own minds that were never meant in that way, or were maybe meant to hurt someone but said due to a personal hurt that was experienced in the sender’s life.
I used to think people were mean. That people are selfish and hurtful and that they only care about their own walks of life, while they willingly step on other’s feelings. Well, you know what, to a certain degree this is true. But it’s only because each individual is just struggling to fit a mold they seem to feel they need to fit.
The one doing the hurting is normally hurting on the inside. So next time someone lashes out at you, try to see what you can do to help them with their pain, rather than reacting in a way that makes things worse. If you are the one doing the hurting or have done it, go and apologise and ask for forgiveness. Explain your feelings and try to move on. In order to find your own mold, you need to accept who you are. People are not all the same, so don’t expect them to be. They are perfect the way God created them so how dare we be irritated by them and their ways. If God wants to be their friend, if God loves them so much that He was willing to give His own flesh and blood, how dare we NOT try see the goodness inside of them that God created.
As I put myself in all of the following situations, sometimes knowingly and unknowingly, I would like to leave you with the following prayers. For those of you who have done something to hurt another due to a personal hurt, insecurity, irritation you have felt, or for any reason. Maybe you did not even realise you were a part of someone’s hurt. Either way, I pray that you would follow God’s words using the following instructions from the Bible. Mend your relationship so that God can mend you.
Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working.
1 John 1:9
If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
There is one whose rash words are like swords thrusts, but the tongue of the wise brings healing.
Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in your sight, O Lord, my rock and my redeemer.
For the ones who have been hurt by words from another, I pray you will seek inside your heart for the reason behind the offense you took. Was it maybe just the fact that you don’t know your self-worth or that you did not recognise the hurt from which it came? Was it really directed in the way you perceived it? Either way, I pray that you would follow God’s instructions from His word in the following, regardless of the hurt you feel. Give it over to God and forgive.
Repay no evil for evil, but give thought to do what is honorable in the sight of all. If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all.
For if you forgive others their trespasses your heavenly Father will also forgive you,
For those of you that look at others in contempt or judgment of their actions, in disgust for the decisions they make, I pray for that for a pure heart like that of Jesus inside of you. I pray God will bless you with the eyes of Christ Who carried the unimaginable love for the darkest of souls. I pray that you will love like the Father does and leave it all in His hands. We were created to love one another and every soul deserves God’s love.
Why do you pass judgment on your brother? Or you, why do you despise your brother? For we will all stand before the judgment seat of God; for it is written,” As I live, says the Lord, every knee shall bow to me, and every tongue shall confess to God.” So then each of us will give an account of himself to God.
If you have a moment, leave a comment or a testimony below. Or just like and share if you feel led.
Bless your words as they leave your mouths with the love of the Father, the Son and anoint them by the Holy Spirit.