Recently I’ve been juggling a lot with school, personal progress, and extra curricular activities. I wrote a post for another blog that I contribute to that spoke of some very vulnerable feelings. I’ve been doing a lot with my life that I am definitely proud of. My friends old and new tell me that they're proud of me and that I’m amazing or remarkable. I believe them and I truly feel that confidence within me.
And because I’m human, I’m feeling pressures to be perfect. I’m feeling pressures to be an unstoppable superhero. Even in writing this vulnerable post I spoke of I saw how I was striving so hard to be someone I’m not. Trying to be a better version of me to the point of putting so much energy into it that I’m wearing myself out.
I really wish I was better than I am.
Last night I prayed for and of a lot of things. I started crying because I wanted impossible things in my life. I wanted things that are mutually exclusive to the plan of salvation. I felt shame in the desires of my heart. I felt shame knowing that even in these contrary desires I can’t help but feel goodness and spirituality. I can’t even call them evil because it doesn’t feel right to me and yet anything that is unable to coexist with our Heavenly Father must be. This also troubles me.
I feel like Superman with a new kind of kryptonite. He still can fly, is invulnerable, and yet he finds himself unsure of this piece of krypton. This piece of his origin planet doesn’t bring him to his knees. He feels drawn to and likes this kryptonite. But it’s far removed from a place that no longer exists and makes Superman miss his origin planet, a planet he never knew. This kryptonite takes away from the joy he could be experience on his home planet, earth.
I didn’t come away from the prayer with any answers. I’m still just as clueless as how to fight out of my trial and resist the strange power of this unknown kryptonite. But I came away from my prayer knowing the I am a son of my Heavenly Father who loves me. In the dark time of my life He’s just told me, “Stay close to me.” He loves me despite my weaknesses because I’m His son. He would want me to enjoy my life even when in trial.
The big step for me to enjoy my life in the storm isn’t to have the acceptance of others, I have plenty of that. It’s not just remembering how much my Heavenly Father loves me. The step I’ve been struggling to take is accepting and loving myself despite my weaknesses simply because my Heavenly Father does.
So here I am seeing that, yeah, I got some stuff I don’t understand. And right now, I don’t need to. That understanding will come in time. I know that I’m doing everything I possibly can. My Heavenly Father wouldn’t want me to get down on myself because I’m not meeting some expectations I’ve held myself to. He would want me to accept me where I am as I am and just keep moving forward and staying close to him.
|Photo credits by Rob Johsnon.|
It’s then at that point that I stop worrying and start enjoying. That’s when I start finding joy even in my endurance of whatever it is I’m facing. Children exemplify this beautifully. A child could come out from the wreckage of a tornado. He’s sad because his home is in ruin. The neighborhood he remembers is gone. He may even be afraid of the future with it’s uncertainty. Yet as he walks through the rubble there he sees a slightly dirty bike. It’s still in good condition and survived the disaster like he did. With a joyous laugh the child jumps on the bike and he finds joy despite his trial.
Too often I forget to seek after this joy like this little boy. If I want to find joy despite my struggles, I need to take a break. I need to let myself find joy in the company of family and good friends. I need to draw, design, be creative, and do something spontaneous. What I’m discovering about this new kind of kryptonite is that only has the power that I give to it. It doesn’t need any more attention than what is necessary.
I know that we can find joy even in trial. I know part of that is accepting ourselves as we are in whatever place we find ourselves in. We don’t justify unrighteousness but we don’t shame ourselves either. We love and accept ourselves as the savior does. Thanks for reading everyone. I know I talk a lot about trials but hey, nobody is perfect.