Monday, November 07, 2005

My Ways Are Not Your Ways...

I know that sounds more like a sermon title than a blog entry, but I’ve just spent the past hour explaining to my 10 year old daughter that she doesn’t have to find a boyfriend just because the other girls in her grade 5 class are trying to pair off with boys!

I can remember that ache of being so much taller than everyone else... so bad at anything athletic... so much into books and art instead of gossip games... and yet, still wanting somehow to “fit in” or be like everyone else, even though no one else was really sure what that meant either.

It’s really quite horrible the pressure our world places on all of us. To be thin, to be wealthy, to be popular, to be famous, to be powerful... It seems as if more and more kids are trying to accomplish everything before the end of their teens!!

What a far cry from the community we truly long to be part of... where we are valued for who we are, not what we look like, for how we treat others instead of how much we earn. Think of the fine examples of being neighbours such as Amish barn raisings, quilting circles, prayer groups, book clubs, knitting or stitching groups where that sense of belonging or helping one another still exists.

People wonder why I tell them that crafting is SO important. When you slow down and take the time to create something with your hands, you have the chance to ponder the deeper issues, to listen for the still small voices, to spend time with those you care about and share burdens... or recharge your batteries with much needed alone time. We cannot always run at a frantic pace trying to keep up to some imaginary pace setter on the track ahead of us! How awful to always be looking over your shoulder to see if someone is about to pass you!

I may never know how much Erin actually heard from me tonight. Perhaps the most important thing she will remember is that I took the time to listen. I did try to encourage her to just start finding out who she really is instead of changing herself to try to fit in or make someone like her. Words that it took me almost half my lifetime to believe for myself and the second part of my lifetime to champion.

Each of us is totally unique and wondrous in this Universe. We can bring gifts, insights, talents, wisdom, compassion and all manner of things into the world that NO ONE else can do just the same way. Find your own voice and then sing with all your soul. It shouldn’t matter if it is perfectly in tune!

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