Everyone has a story. But it is usually not the one that they are telling.
These words were spoken by a good friend, in chapel this past Wednesday.
It was something that I needed to hear. Something the people of Hope College probably needed to hear too.
I’m a junior at Hope. And I by no means have things figured out. But I’m starting to realize that my friend was right. We usually aren’t telling the story we’re living. But why…?
Most often, there is one thing that holds us back from who we’re made to be. I tend to think that thing is fear.
Fear of not fitting in.
Fear of being vulnerable.
Fear of not having a good story to tell.
These are all legit fears.
But let me tell you what else my friend told us at chapel on Wednesday…
“God didn’t create you to be like somebody else. He created you uniquely in his image.”
The point here is not if you believe in God or not. The point is that you are unique. You have gifts, talents, humor, and so much more. So, let me tell you, you were never made to fit in. You were made to stand out!
“I used to feel like I had to be perfect… Becoming vulnerable with others has given me freedom from that.”
I’ll be honest. Being vulnerable with people is hard. Especially those close to you.
I’ve found it easy to be “good.” This is much easier than, “You know, I’m not having a great day,” or “I’m really struggling with this…” Now I’m not saying we should go around telling people all of our struggles and be Debbie downers. I’m all about positivity and the more we can have in this world the better. It is in sharing with those we are close to that is important. It will give you a sense of freedom. Your relationships will be strengthened. And you will have overcome a legitimate fear.
“Don’t ever underestimate the impact you can have on someone else’s life.”
We tend to believe our influence and story we tell with our life is not good enough. Here me out on this… You are making an impact. Whether you know it or not. You are.
If you don’t think you have a good story to tell, experiment with the following: Walk down the street and give someone a warm smile. Maybe a friendly “hello.” If they don’t smile back, I’ll take the blame! What I’m trying to say is that making an impact is so simple! Often, we think we have to do big things to tell a good story. I’m learning it’s the little things that make the story good.
Most the time we don’t tell our actual story. We let fear win. But fear doesn’t have to win! Remember: You are unique. You are made to be vulnerable. You are making an impact. The way we live our life is the story we tell. So, let me ask you… What story are you currently telling?