Hopefully I’m not alone in this, but I constantly get the feeling that I never outgrew my “awkward phase” (which I was looking forward to in junior high!). Without fail I am clumsy and embarrass easily. I hardly ever say the right thing in the right moment, and even when I do, I don’t stop talking soon enough. That look that people get when they’re politely checking for an escape route makes me want to cringe! For instance, at church recently. When I should have simply nodded my head and smiled when the message was being explained to me, I instead said something I intended to be witty. It was quite less, though, and ended up seeming more questioning and sarcastic. “BOO, awkward self!”. However, there is hope.
As a literacy major and a writer I constantly critique my work. As a Jesus follower, likewise, I am forever critiquing my actions and my heart. With crowds filtering into the sanctuary. I was still dwelling on my words in self pity when one of my pastors walked up with a kind smile. I couldn’t help but tell him all about my insecurities as I wondered if I would ever outgrow being God’s awkward girl. In our brief but enlightening discussion, I was able to come away with three crucial truths.
- Being awkward is a sign of growing pains, and boy do I need to grow! There have been so many times in my life during which I feel as though my growth is stunted somehow. During these empty times, a single common factor was that I was always using other people as a mirror. In reality, what I needed to be doing was using God as my mirror. I love the description in 1 Peter 2:2, which tells “Like newborn babies, crave pure spiritual milk, so that by it you may grow up in your salvation.”. We are all growing into something. As such, we need to ensure that our images reflect such.
- Feelings of awkwardness often occur during childhood, and I adore being a child of God! In Mark 10:15 it is proclaimed “Truly I tell you, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.”. Even though God wants us to grow, he wants us to realize that we can never outgrow being his children. As such, we should rejoice in the innocent freedom that this can bring!
- Being awkward keeps me humble. In Psalm 25:9 it states “He guides the humble in what is right and teaches them his way”. One of my most prayed prayers have been for Him to show me His way…what he wants me to do. In staying humble, I increase the likelihood of his guidance.
So I doubt that I will ever outgrow my “awkward phase”. While I used to view this as a hindrance, I am now able to see that it is one of God’s gifts.
You can also see this content as a guest post at http://www.brookelynnbooks.com/blog/why-im-perfectly-at-ease-being-gods-awkward-girl and check out some of her amazing content!