I have a mild obsession with Disney and Disney princesses. Mild. So when I came across an image on Facebook listing various traits of Disney princesses to determine which one was most like my personality, I was ecstatic. I read through the list and tried to decide which one I felt resembled me closest, purely for my own entertainment. While most character lists contained at least one trait of my personality, I wanted to see if I could narrow it down.
Finally, I had my choices down to two. As a tie-breaker, I decided to ask my mom and husband. I began by reading them the entire list, even the characters I had eliminated myself. “Belle,” my mom answered. “Which is fitting,” she added. “She always was your favorite.” No surprise there, bookworm could be my middle name.
Kris took a moment longer than my mom to consider his answer. “Jasmine,” he announced at last. I arched my eyebrow. “Jasmine? How so?” He repeated back the traits I had read for the Arabic princess: “Stubborn, free spirit, fierce, intimidating at first, is actually very warm hearted underneath. That’s you a hundred percent, babe.”
I sat back and considered his pick. If I had a dollar for every time a friend confessed to me that before we’d spoken, they found me intimidating, I still wouldn’t have enough to pay off my student loans, but I’d have a respectable amount. My mom looked at me and shook her head, “I see more Belle, to be honest.”
“I see a lot of Belle, but I see mostly Jasmine,” Kris concluded.
Looking back on it, I suppose it shouldn’t surprise me that my husband and mom see different sides of me, the side they bring out most or perhaps the traits they appreciate the most. Either way, it isn’t really the whole picture. One of the things I remember falling so in love with when I began my journey as a Christian was realizing that because God created me, he saw me as I truly was. This was especially important to me emerging from my high school years where peer pressure and frustrating life circumstances had pulled traits out of me that I wasn’t particularly proud of. Knowing there was a being who loved the mess that I was and wasn’t trying to force me to be anything I wasn’t freed me to stop trying to be everything to everyone. I wasn’t created for that. God sees every side of me: the Belle side, the Jasmine side, even the traits not pleasant enough to be featured in a Disney film.
When you feel yourself fracturing into personas and slivers of a character you don’t recognize, lean into and find your identity in the one who created you to be in a loving, honest relationship with Him and knows you better than anyone in this world ever will. Daily, choose to live for an audience of one. His perspective is the only one that really matters.
Plant your roots in Christ and let him be the foundation for your life. Be strong in your faith, just as you were taught. And be grateful.
Colossians 2:7 CEV