Written By: Megan Kincheloe
Psalm 139:13-16, “You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body and knit me together in my mother’s womb. Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex! Your workmanship is marvelous—how well I know it. You watched me as I was being formed in utter seclusion, as I was woven together in the dark of the womb. You saw me before I was born. Every day of my life was recorded in your book. Every moment was laid out before a single day had passed.” (NLT).
I was talking to one of my dearest friends about an approaching weekend. She sensed some hesitancy when I was detailing the plans that lie ahead. When I could not find the words to explain how I was feeling, she dredged them up for me. She said, “I know…if you are like me, you have a much different comfort level depending on who you are spending time with.” She went on to describe her own assessment and talked about how her level of relaxation changes based on who she is with. Even more disturbing, she quietly admitted that she is not able to “be herself” around certain people. She nailed it! Oh my stars…I reflected on this the entire rest of the day. Here are two people over the age of 35 who, at times, admittedly change their personality, response style, and level of guardedness based on who is in our presence.
Here’s the thing. This isn’t all bad. There are always going to be times when you need to be flexible and even show restraint. There are also times when you are going to need to effectively be the best version of yourself. Work and school are two of them. You will likely be more serious and attempt to be more ‘put together’ in school or the workplace. The way you present at work and school is indeed important, and in fact, the Bible tells us in Proverbs 16:3, “Commit your work to the Lord, and your plans will be established.” (ESV)
This being said, what I want to encourage you is to not let a temporary alteration of your personality change who you are at the core. God worked hard to make you exactly the person He designed for you to be. He gave you exactly what you need and equipped you for every situation, every scenario, and life event you will encounter. He did not leave anything out and He did not give you anything extra. Do not compromise your character for ANY reason.
Another thing is…you are not going to always be around people who inspire you to be your best…but if you have a choice, surround yourself with those people. There is nothing better than finding friends who accept your faults, mistakes, and bad decisions and love you anyway. You will know who these people are when being around them just feels easy…when being with them does not create any hesitation or feelings of anxiety. If you find yourself spending time with people who threaten to change who God created you to be, become intentional about not changing with the breeze. Stand firm and embrace your quirkiness, your silliness, and your sensitivity. If God ignites a passion in you about a particular topic…do not waiver in your belief. As long as what you believe lines up with scripture, do not let the opinions of others taint your truth.
Ladies…the short version is…
JUST. BE. YOU.
God loves you just the way you are and your true friends will too.