The Deepest Fear

“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”                            -Marianne Williamson

The television was on as I was doing some housework this morning, so I caught snippets of the movie Coach Carter. I had seen the movie years ago, but one scene grabbed my attention as I tidied the living room. The scene involved a student quoting the selection above. My attention was fixed on the words, although naturally I would never have been able to remember more than just a few of them beyond the moment. Of course, with the benefit of the internet, it didn’t take more than a second to find the entire quote.

There is truth in this quote.

I do often fear being inadequate, but I think I am much more afraid of being all that I was created to be. I do ask myself who I think I am to be ____. See that? I hesitate to even use the words brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous in a question directed at myself! There are other words that could go in that blank space. Words like strong, courageous, brave, likeable, creative, caring…and the list could go ever on. I am afraid of being all those things. Some of those qualities I struggle to believe even apply to me. I don’t feel like I am brilliant, gorgeous or talented. For others, even if I believe I have those qualities, I suppose I fear what others will think if I stand tall and be myself. Who am I indeed?

A big part of my journey these past couple of years has been learning to accept and love the person I was so clearly created to be. It’s not easy for a people-pleaser like myself to let go of the sense that I need to be what others expect me to be, but that line of thinking never really did work out well for me. It made me miserable. It was exhausting. It was a horrible way to live.

I hope that I am shining more these days. At the very least, I am growing more comfortable in my skin. I feel powerful, not because I am more special than anyone else but because of the One who created me. His glory shines through me, and I am merely learning to allow it to happen.

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