BIAY – Judges – Who Am I / Are You?


I am loving a new book I started reading called How to Tell a Story: The Essential Guide to Memorable Storytelling from The MothThe Moth is a personal storytelling initiative that has events all over the country (world?) and the stories are shared via public radio.  It is one of the podcasts that I love to listen to.  

I’m only a few chapters in (its just getting started right now) but there was a quote right near the beginning that really resonated with me.  

Sometimes you have to figure out who you’re not before you can become who you are. 

Chenjerai Kumanyika

I adore this because it reflects so much of what I have experienced in my life personally.  How often have I tried to be someone that I am not for whatever reason and found myself frustrated, hurting, or simply realizing that it was like wearing shoes that are the wrong size?  

As I just finished reading the book of Judges and the whole book feels like the people of God trying to be someone they aren’t and seeing time after time the horrible consequences of it.  The more they get away from who they are, the worse off they become.  In Judges, there are stories of genocide, war, hatred, child sacrifice, rape, murder, and more than a few other horrific scenes.  It is not a book for the faint of heart.  In between the times of disgust and horror as I read, I also felt sad for how they had gotten further and further away from who they truly were at heart. 

There are moment in the midst of it all where there is recognition of what they’ve become.  In Judges 10:16, it says, “Then they got rid of the foreign gods among them and served the Lord.  And the Lord could bear Israel’s misery no longer.”  That’s one of the beautiful things about God – no matter how far we stray, God’s is willing to receive us back and show us once again who we are – beloved and unique people created in God’s very own image.  

The other morning as I was hiking, I had this moment where there was all the lush green of late Spring here in Ohio and there was this one singular yellow bloom standing out among everything else – this one unique plant among all the rest.  

I am grateful that I am daily learning that I don’t need to be anyone other than who I am.  As the writers of the storytelling book say… “Your story is enough.”  

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