What if shining isn’t really my thing?

God uses people all the time in the most unique ways.


God has given me some really great people.

One of them is an amazing woman who flies under the radar. Sometimes it’s because she needs to believe more about what God says about her than she believes about herself and other times it’s because she doesn’t want the attention.

I’m going to call her Hymnal here on this post for three reasons. One, I think it will make her giggle. Two, she probably already knows who she is (and certainly will by the end of this blog). Three, it gives you a chance to imagine the unsung hero in your own life.

Hymnal and I go waaaaaay back. Not in the way you may think. We met as grown adults, but our personalities and denominational backgrounds were extremely similar.

Hymnal and I have laughed over receiving rosaries and crucifixes because “we were Christians,” though the denomination of our youth would have frowned upon us for having them.

We can always text each other when a hymn or old school Christian song pops into our head. (Yeah, I’m pretty sure she and I both know all the words to the rap in Jesus Freak, or why friends are friends forever when the Lord’s the Lord of them.)

And Hymnal prays for me y’all! I mean she really does. I’ll get texts from her at just the right times (or the wrong times :-P) if God is challenging me to do something.

So one day Hymnal texts me and says, “I think God is telling me to have you watch a movie.” I knew the one she was talking about, because my kids had watched it before. You know one of the cheesy Disney channel movies with lots of teenage drama and everything coming out perfectly at the end.

Now some of you might scoff, but because of our relationship I’m giving anything Hymnal tells me to do a shot.

Not long after, I got everything quiet or maybe I even used some kid free time and sat down to watch my “after school special.”

As a writer, I copied down notes as I watched its deeply theological plot.

I’m not going to lie. There were some pretty profound truths in the movie most of which I was needing reaffirmed in my life at the time. (See! Hymnal knows what she’s talking about.)

One of the lines stood out among the others. It was, “what if shining isn’t really my thing?”

In that season I was wrestling with how God could use me in the lives of others around me, and felt like those words  were printed on my forehead.

I’m not a girly girl.

I don’t even look at myself in the mirror. (Don’t worry it’s not a don’t-like-what-I-see thing. It’s I-forget-that-you’re-supposed-to-care-about-how-you-look thing, and a more-worried-about-slipping-on-wet-tile-than-a-hair-out-of-place-or-something-in-my-teeth thing. #thestruggleisreal)

I like jeans and flip flops over fancy dresses, and would much rather go grocery shopping than clothes shopping.

This hit home. How was I going to shine like so many other leaders? What if shining wasn’t really my thing?

And then I remembered, I serve the Light of the world.

A burden lifted. It was His job to shine not mine. I didn’t have to worry about shining at all.

A lot of the things girly-girls really love (and often decorate their spaces with) don’t actually shine.

Glitter, silver, gold, platinum, and jewels don’t actually shine. They reflect.

Even glossy lips and non-matte nail polishes that many love so much don’t shine either. They reflect, too.

So Hymnal was right. I needed to watch a kids’ movie. I needed to understand that serving Jesus is merely reflecting. He’s doing all the work.

Maybe one day people will say how much I shined in this dark world, but I’ll know that it was all really about reflecting.

Diamonds are girl’s best friend after all. 😉

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