i am..

My previous post was a somber one, and definitely the hardest one for me to write, but dealing with a dear friend’s death really put a lot of things into perspective for me; about life, relationships, self-awareness, fears and the list goes on. I started being a lot more observant and conscious of what goes on around me; not just in a physical sense, but also in the way people interact, think and what they focus their attention on.

Lately, something I noticed and wanted to call attention to is people’s inability to see their value and dwelling on their insecurities. I definitely struggle with this, but I didn’t realize how much it plagued society and destroyed people’s understanding of their full potential. It really broke my heart, and made me think a lot about how I could address this issue for myself, but also hopefully encourage someone else.

Whenever people asked me to think of a cool idea, a plan, something unique about myself, my go-to answer was “I can’t, I’m not creative.” I was always envious of those who were artistically inclined or musically gifted, and could create something amazing or express themselves with their craft. I would always ponder what I was good at, what talents I had that made me set apart from others, but would come up empty. I really couldn’t think of anything and I would laugh about it on the surface, but inside I’d feel insecure and defeated. I was like this for most of my life, but one of my good friends, Jane, put things into a different perspective for me. We were talking about successful apps like Uber, Snapchat, Shazam, Instagram, etc. and tried to figure out what the world needed next. I fantasized about creating the next big thing. In the midst of our conversation, I said to her, “Jane, I would never be able to come up with something. I’m just not creative like that.” She immediately challenged my statement. She told me that each person is born with some kind of gift. It may not manifest itself as something tangible, but it is present inside of all of us.

God is the ultimate creator, and he created me. There is no other Debbie Yoon that is exactly like me, who has the same qualities and mannerisms as me, or looks just like me. That in itself makes me creative. However, when I think a little bit deeper, I realize my gift isn’t in something that I can showcase or physically construct, but it lies in my ability to remain positive through pretty much any circumstance. Granted, that doesn’t seem “creative” in a conventional sense, but I believe it is one of my greatest assets. The ability to be a light and bring joy into people’s lives is the greatest gift that I can have. I’m appreciative and grateful that I can have an optimistic spirit, because I now know that it’s not something everyone has. It sets me apart, and It’s a mindset and a quality that I should embrace just like an artist embraces his or her talent and appreciates the end product.

It’s easy to fall into a routine of comparing ourselves with others who seemingly have more than you do. Especially with the rampant spread of social media, it’s not just celebrities we start to idolize, but random people that have come into the limelight because they post some great pictures and are considered “instafamous”. I think it’s natural to recognize and admire people who are successful or have exceptional beauty, but when it becomes obsessive to the point you devalue yourself, there’s a problem. This may seem so stupid and obvious, but it’s something that really affects people’s lives and it shouldn’t be pushed under the rug.

We’re all unique in our own way and we’re not worthless or any less valuable because the media or society doesn’t celebrate what we have to offer. People might think to themselves anyone can be nice, anyone can be loving, anyone can be patient so that doesn’t make me unique or special, but the thing is… not everyone is and we desperately need those people. This world is an ugly place and it needs people who can show compassion and empathy; it needs people who can listen, who can be generous, who can make someone smile. They seem like such simple things, but these are gifts that are far more important than knowing the latest on the Kardashians, or finding out who Taylor Swift is dating now.

So…next time you think I wish I was her or I wish I was him…next time you think I’m not creative or I have nothing to offer.. Remember this.. Remember that the Creator of the entire universe created you, and placed that value in you. You are YOU for a reason, and He created you with purpose. Even if you feel society doesn’t see you, He absolutely sees you and loves you. Find comfort in that and embrace that because, if the Lord loves you and sees the amazing person you are, what does it matter if the world doesn’t? He’s the one who created it.

I am creative. I am strong. I am valuable. I am optimistic. I am unique. I am loved.. I am all these things and more because I am made from the hands of an all mighty, all loving, all knowing Creator.

“Before I shaped you in the womb, I knew all about you. Before you saw the light of day, I had holy plans for you: A prophet to the nations— that’s what I had in mind for you.” – Jeremiah 1:5

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