For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. [Psa 139:13 NIV] I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. [Psa 139:14 NIV]
This week continues my online bible study with Proverbs 31. One of the blog topics this week was about The Real Me. Share your God-given talents and personality.
What comes to mind is celebrating the people God made us to be.
One of the Oopsland tag lines is “free to be”.
Once we feel free to be ourselves, to truly become all that we are….that is when we are free.
“Oopsland is where we are free. To try, to live, to be. Just as we were created. Learning, failing, celebrated.” (from “Beware the Shoulds” located in the main menu above) http://www.oopsland.org/beware-the-shoulds/
So as I read Chapter 8 this week in A Confident Heart by Renee Swope, I am reminded that I am a Sanguine/Choleric. I have not always allowed myself to be that. Let’s take a look at the roller coaster ride of not accepting yourself the way you are naturally bent.
- As a young child I was more than allowed to be free, creative, playful, goofy and relaxed. If I needed a nap, I just laid down on my favorite spot on the sun porch and slept.
- As I grew up……”order” entered my life. Wow. What a shock that was. Suddenly I had rules to follow. “People don’t do that, and they don’t do this, and they certainly would NEVER do such and such.” Ugh. So much to remember.
- So I stuffed my true self into a box, and I fit the mold around me. Almost like a jack-in-the-box. Round and round, being turn by Perfect Isle into the perfect child…….the jack-in-the-box music played……..but when would the lid pop open? There were many external warning signs that the stuffing was starting to pop at any minute.
- So many aspects of life caused me to get rid of my true self. School, Leadership positions, Corporate jobs. Task oriented, decision maker was acceptable because good leaders could make decisions. But an energetic Sanguine who just wanted to have fun…..well, that did not fit in the corporate, leadership box at all. And how could I possibly support myself, keep a job and pay the bills by being my true self?!
I won’t go into details in this post, but the jack-in-the-box style eventually popped the lid. The path was hard and the decline was steep, but I did eventually hit rock bottom.
Now I am allowing myself to acknowledge a few things about myself.
- D/I on the DISC.
- ENFP on the Myers-Briggs.
- The Strengths Finder lists me as having Command and Futuristic as my top strengths.
- My top spiritual gifts are Leadership, Teaching and Prophecy.
- I LOVE the outdoors – especially hiking, rollerblading, kayaking, skiing, snow-shoeing
- My friends tell me I invite them to adventure
- I do have a unique, creative artistic side that needs to be fed and let loose more often
- I love acting and being on stage and video as one of my creative expressions
My Oopsland journey is to uncover and discover how all that fits together to make an amazing person. Sound self-conceited? No. The residents of Oopsland know that the more they celebrate themselves, the more they celebrate others and allow others to be the glorious individuals they were also meant to be. It is a life-giving place.
Another book I am just finishing is Captivating by John & Stasi Eldredge. This book has also been talking about living in our truest self in order to bring life to the world around us. When we are fully alive, then we bring life everywhere we go.
Doesn’t that sound great?
I want that.
I want to be the best Billie I can be, in order to bring more life to the refugees coming out of Perfect Isle.
Many of them are coming from a dry, dead place and could use some springs of life. Like streams in the desert.
Isa 43:19 See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland
“WHAT?! How is the possible…..I can’t believe it…….that is soooo unfair……they don’t love me………”
This week I had what I call a $500 reaction to a $5 situation. Which basically means I COMPLETELY over-reacted.
When I over-react like that, I know to look for the emotion deep inside. Somewhere in my heart is an injured place that needs to be brought forward for healing and truth.
This situation was wrapped up in so many others this week. All with intertwining thoughts and storylines.
The main theme was what Renee Swope talks about in her book A Confident Heart as I continue that study this week with Proverbs 31 Ministries. Our hashtag this week is #IAmNot So let’s refute some stinkin’ thinkin’ a bit today.
Or if we think in terms Perfect Isle and Oopsland (cuz that’s the language of this blog) ……….I was spending all of my time in Perfect Isle and it was really getting me down.
One example of how these AM thoughts (against me) impact my life negatively happened on Saturday morning:
- I had gotten up early to get a lot done. I had high (UNREALISTIC) expectations for the day. As I went about my morning schedule and ran errands, NOTHING was working out. I mean nothing. My path was not efficient, the places I needed to go were not working out, the people were frustrating me….etc etc etc
- I was getting so down on myself, that by 10:30am I thought I had FAILED so much and was so INCOMPETANT I may as well toss in the towel for the rest of the day.
It was only 10:30am. How can 1 person fail that much in less than half a day? But I had convinced myself I was that awful. Might as well quit. Expectations like these come straight from Perfect Isle.
Luckily I caught my stinking thinking…..but I wrote some of them down and will refute them here. I am still on a journey to Oopsland, and as I transform, I am catching these things earlier and earlier before they get out of hand.
Messages that were in my head:
- Perfect Isle: “You are so incompetent you can’t even plan a Saturday morning agenda to the best use of your time”
- Oopsland: “It’s ok….did you enjoy your longer cup of coffee this morning? Maybe you needed a few extra minutes at home today”
“When I said, ‘My foot is slipping,’ your love, O Lord, supported me. When anxiety was great within me, your consolation brought joy to my soul.” Psalm 94:18-19
“….he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion…” Phillipians 1:6
- Perfect Isle: “You are so stupid that you don’t even know things other people learned in grade-school”
- Oopsland: “You’ve lived such an adventurous life, that information got pushed out when you were jumping off mountains in the Andes”
“Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the desert, streams in the wasteland.” Isaiah 43:18-19
- Perfect Isle: “You were supposed to connect with these 10 people a week ago….and you haven’t even followed up….everyone else did”
- Oopsland: “It’s ok…you need to do it soon but the world will not end because you didn’t do it last Monday”
“If God is for us, who can be against us?” Romans 8:31b
- Perfect Isle: “You lost that opportunity just like you always do….clueless, lazy, dreamer, disorganized….etc etc”
- Oopsland: “You probably got a better opportunity because you were focused on new creations and looking forward”
“But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong.” I Corinthians 1:27
Let’s all start refuting these negative messages about our failures declaring #IAmNot just as Renee Swope is teaching so many of us in her book.
RESOURCES if you need something:
If you are looking for resources for Inner Healing Prayer…..I received certification under Ed Smith. I trust all of their teachings. http://www.theophostic.com/
A simpler, individual guide to learn Inner Healing Prayer for yourself that compliments Ed Smith’s teachings, is from Lillian Easterly Smith (not related). I serve under her here in Michigan at Lifecare Christian Center and trust her teachings as well: The Great Exchange: Replacing Lies with Experiential Truth by Lillian M. Easterly-Smith BCPC