who am i?

I sat on the beach, tears streaming down my cheeks, asking the hardest question I could think to ask: WHO AM I?

IMG_7131Towards the end of our trip to Hawaii last spring, I just needed a moment to myself. Just me. And God. On the beach.

I get this way sometimes; it’s the true introvert in me. After months of being ignored due to daily routine and busyness, my introspective self yells, Stop the madness! Take a deep breath! Slow down! Attend to your soul!

This time felt bigger, though – more important and more urgent than ever before. Like I had been putting of some real soul-attending for a long time and that time had come.

I knew all of this would catch up with me. While in Rwanda nearly two years ago, my friend Jennie asked tough, pointed questions and kindly called me out.

It sounds like everything in your life right now is good”, she said.

But what if it could be better? What if really digging into all these insecurities and questions could result in something even greater than you could even imagine? Maybe it’s time to let go of good.”

I came home with every intention to dig in and search for better and instead just jumped back into regular, everyday, good life.

Thankfully, God didn’t let me stay there. He grabbed my attention one year later on that warm evening in May and began the gentle undoing that is leading to better.

I sat there on the sand listening to the rhythmic crashing of the waves for a long time. Praying, crying, thinking, searching, breaking. I’ve been in that praying-crying-thinking-searching-breaking spot ever since, continuing to ask the question:

Who Am I?

After nearly nine months of introspection (which, by the way, hasn’t stopped since that day on the beach. It’s been a big, hard, heavy, messy year) I’m one step closer to finding an answer.

I’m slowly reading/working through a book titled The Search for Significance. I’m not typically drawn to Christian living/self-help non-fiction books, but this one resonated with my from the beginning and I’m pretty desperate to heal and grow, so I’m doing it.

There is a statement that is repeated throughout the book – truth that I know in my head but haven’t fully believed in my heart. This approval-addict, affirmation-seeking girl needs these words to sink in and take root. These are words that bring freedom. That offer hope. That deliver grace and kindness. That hit to my core and are so hard to wrap my stubborn head around.

It is the absolute antidote to the performance-based acceptance lie I’ve held onto.

And it answers my big question.  Who Am I?

I am quote / jones design companyThere it is, right there.

I can add nothing to it. I did nothing to deserve it.

For a girl who gets a whole lot of meaning from doing, striving, performing, this truth feels like freedom. It is lofty and vague and intangible and I don’t quite like that (I want a check list! A to-do list! Actionable steps I can do), but it is just what my soul is craving.

I’m trusting that as I sit in this deep place of seeking, good will come from it.

Actually, I’m believing for even better.

double-line-tinyThis journey I’m on (and maybe you are to?) is about discovering who God says I am and replacing subtle lies with this great truth. If you find yourself in a similar spot, first of all, know that you are not alone. Second, dig in. It is hard and what you’ll find might be ugly, but it’s worth it. And finally, let this truth about who you are sink in. You are deeply loved, completely forgiven, fully pleasing, totally accepted and complete in Christ. #goodnews

I made that little print up there for myself to keep as a reminder. I have in on the wall above my desk to keep my eyes and heart focused. I thought you might enjoy it, too. There are two per sheet, so feel free to download and print, keep one for yourself and share the other with a friend.

Free I Am art print / hand-lettered by Emily of Jones Design Company

The art print is in THE ARCHIVE along with all of our best free prints, templates and fonts.  If you are not an Archive member, simply add your email to the list and you’re in.

CLICK HERE TO ACCESS THE ARCHIVE

I would love to hear what this statement means to you. Feel free to comment below or snap a photo of your print and post to instagram. Be sure to tag me (@jonesdesigncompany) so I can hear more of your story. xoxo.

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