In this space of electronic invisibility, I’m looking for the place I fit in this world, maybe not so different than the refugees landing on all sorts of shores this week.
Learning to find a voice. My voice.
NT Wright refers to the voice within us that cries for justice and beauty, the echo of a voice. He’s referring to the voice of our Creator resonating within each of us,
Sometimes, I still think the voice I hear is my own and try to silence it’s call to greatness. But the call to join with something bigger than myself, something higher, the call to greatness being birthed in me isn’t a vain desire to make a name for myself, though vanity whispers to us all.
This mandate with which we have all been created, to reflect the one who created us, when we follow the holy echo of that call, something beautiful and intricately unique happens inside us.
We discover our own voice.
It’s challenging for me to leave out qualifiers in my writing but I’m learning.
I remember a time in the middle of my fourth decade. My children were small and I was working out by process of elimination, what kind of parent I wanted to become. At the same time, my paradigm of faith was shifting and every last plank in the floorboard of my relationships had started to warp around the edges.
In those exhausting lonely days, there wasn’t much of anything I knew for sure.
I believed God was interested in every area of my life and loved me in a way I couldn’t begin to feel yet; I also believed, knew actually, that my children needed so much more than I was equipped to give them.
The majority of statements I made in those days were cushioned with qualifiers.
I don’t really know but…..
I think…..or it seems to me…….
I wonder if you might ever consider…..
It’s only my opinion…..
To complicate that mess more was the fact that I was sure I had the answer to any question asked in the course of ever.
(Interestingly enough, at this same time, I was working hard to please and placate people for whom I would never be enough and ignoring relationships with the ones for whom I am everything at this point, my children.)
If you happened to be one of those who listened to my rambling nonsense please accept my deepest apology for nothing specifically and everything in general. I wanted you to think I knew it all but was insecure enough to think that who you were, what you were created to do and be in this life posed a direct threat to who I was. As if of our existences were mutually exclusive.
I didn’t know it yet, but I was qualifying my existence to my own self. I desperately wanted my outside ‘knows’ to match up with the ancient echo in my soul and I didn’t understand yet that the eternity set in my heart could never be explained by what I knew, or what I could point to, or what I could read, or what I could convince you of.
And also? I wanted you to nod your head and tell me…
Yes, I know.
Yes, I understand you.
Yes I see you.
Yes, you are something, someone unique and you have your very own voice.
When I hear hashtags of qualifiers today, I recognize my thirty-something self and feel so much compassion for both the person I’m speaking with and that poor girl inside me who was such a mess. On my better days, I practice showing them with the compassion that I wish I’d had for my own self back then.
As I learn to say big-girl words with no qualifiers here, with you, I’m feeling stronger and safer. I’m finding new confidence in understanding Truth both inside myself and in the world simply because I said so.
Maybe you are too.