Feb 19, 2013

Paradigm Shift

This post is more of a 'thinking-out-loud' thought process for me.  I just recently finished two amazing books (thank you Veronica Roth ) and can't get them out of my head.  The concepts and ideas just keep floating around my brain sparking new ideas as well as illuminating old ideals and challenging things I once thought to be true.  Everytime I read a book, I end up with a 'take-away', something I learned that I didn't know before or something that changes the way I look at the world, myself, those around me.  Every.  Time.  Without fail.  It often comes out in the form of poetry for me.  Sometimes it's one simple quote that I meditate on for days on end, ad nosium.

This time my quest from reading this book has turned into fleshing out the idea of 'surrender'.  According to the dictionary it means: to yield, relinquish, give up, abandon, renounce.  As a follower of Jesus, I know I am to surrender my will to Him as I've written about before.

But what does that really look like?  Most of my life I've been taught that it looks like giving up myself inorder to look more like Jesus.  But what is that supposed to mean?  It seems so obscure, so pie-in-the-sky, so unattainable.  Over time I've interpreted it to mean: Cori, your personality is not good enough, will never be good enough for God; you're inherently bad/wrong; you must change until you look like Me; then I will be happy with you.

This is supposed to bring about 'freedom' from all I've been told.  But instead it has only produced a horrible self image, a feeling of inferiority, never being good enough and a sense of hopelessness.  Is this the freedom that God has for me?  Does this even sound like God?  Or does this maybe sound more like man's version of what he thinks God wants...a bunch of little Jesus look-a-likes running around on earth?

I'm starting to question what surrender really means and what that looks like in my life.  As I was meditating on this today a thought popped into my head: What if I have surrender all wrong?  What if it means giving up my and other's  expectations of what I'm supposed to be and living fully and completely as the person who God made me?  He made my personality, so why am I supposed to be 'giving it up'?  Why not just surrender my idea of 'the perfect person' I think he wants, start being me, let him change the things he wants to change.    Should I feel guilty for being who he made me to be?

I've come to see the difference (finally) between surrendering my will and surrendering my expectations .  I've been trying for so long to give up the essence of who I am, sensing that was the right thing to do by all those 'in the know'.  When all this time God was just wanting me to give up control and let him control.  This leaves me free to just be...be who I am, live fully without fear of other's expectations, trust God to change and make my personality one that shows off who Jesus is in only the way that I can.  The way I reflect Jesus isn't the same as others.  Thank God!  I need to see all the other ways just as much as they need to see my way because Jesus is so much bigger than any one of us.

And all that from a book on a dystopian society...go figure.
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