What I’m (re-) reading today: Galatians 1-2
I’ve been experimenting a lot this month with my blog, trying to feel my way to an approach that works for me (as opposed to feeling consumed with maintaining something for others simply out of habit or routine). A few days ago, I decided to veer from my practice of tying my blog to daily readings. I’m glad I tried that – because it taught me a lesson. I NEED those daily devotions as a part of my spiritual life. Those readings ground me and have tremendous meaning for me. So, for no other reason than that I’ll gravitate back in that direction. Thanks so much for your patience in putting up with me as I continue to be a work in progress….
There is a phenomenon in the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgendered communities know as either the “best little boy/girl in the world” syndrome. What that means is that many of us in the community try to cope with our sexual orientation (or in the case of transgender folks, gender identity) by trying to lead a “perfect” life by other people’s standards. We figure, “If I do everything right, then people will have to like me – even if they eventually do discover my secret.”
That principle guided me for the first 25 years of my life. Let’s just say it wasn’t a great headspace to live in. The pressure from trying to be perfect 24/7 is beyond exhausting. It eventually takes you to a place where you feel as if life is no longer living since you derive no joy or satisfaction for yourself.
Having gone through this experience, I suppose that’s why I relate so strongly to Paul’s words to the Galatians in the passage I re-read this morning. In that passage, Paul wrote: “I tried keeping rules and working my head off to please God, and it didn’t work. So I quit being a ‘law man’ so that I could be God’s man” (Galatians 2:19-20 from The Message). What amazing sense of freedom it gives one to let go of other’s expectations (and even your own expectation of whom you are in relation to others) and simply allow yourself to be God’s person!
Maybe there are pieces of your own life where you are still trying to be “the best little boy/girl in the world” – ways in which you are trying to earn your sense of respect and self-worth. If there are, I would encourage you to step back from these behaviors (these sicknesses, really), and open yourself to the possibility of being cherished simply because you are. If you do that, you’ll find this new sense of freedom that will take you places you never dreamed possible.
Til next time…