I’m going to tell you a secret. Before I do, though, you should probably know my definition of a secret. It’s something only the person holding it knows.
Every once in a while I’ll ask my husband to tell me a secret – something from his day that no one else would know. It might be that he had two cups of coffee instead of one or that he sang in the shower. Nothing earth shattering just a simple glimpse into who he is and how he spends his time.
Maybe these things aren’t really secrets. They’re simply moments. Unnoticed snippets of life that fall between the important things you do throughout your day and everything else. But I like them. They give me an idea of who he is and what I may have missed.
This got me thinking about why we hide parts of ourselves. We all do it. It might be our opinion on some issue or our love of gnomes. We hold parts of ourselves back so as to be more “acceptable” to those around us. They decide what’s allowed, and in turn, we betray ourselves, leaving out the tiny details that describe what we love, how we live, and who we are. A harsh, judgmental world defines what is allowed and what is not. And so, we hide.
There is no soaring in hiding, though. You can’t spread your wings. You can’t even get off the ground. You can’t be yourself, and you can never become who you want to be. And instead of you embracing life, the judgmental, callous, and mean people are the ones deciding who you can be and how much of this life you can live.
Recently, it dawned on me in a new light that I’m created in the image of God. Instead of skimming over this with a mental checkmark, I glimpsed this truth in light of my identity. We are created in the image of God. We’re each unique. For me, that’s some strange combination of goofy, imaginative, and philosophical. For you, it’s something different. When we hide that stuff, the world loses something. God’s design is for each of us to be who has created us to be, AND for us to love one another in the process.
“True intimacy means having an accepting, open relationship with someone who is different from us.” (From Family Ties That Bind by Dr. Ronald W. Richardson)
So here’s the secret I have for you. It’s the secret between who you are and who you want to be. Who you are is a person created in the image of God. Imperfect, but also unique and special. There’s no one else like you, and you bring something to this world that no one else does. And the person you want to be is linked to the plan God has for you. And the secret is you’ll only discover these things when you find your identity in the love of God. Only He should define you. His is the only opinion that matters, and He loves you with an everlasting love. No mean, judgmental, or harsh thing can take that away from you.
And if you’d like to share a secret about your day with me, I’d love to hear it! Leave one in the comments or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.