April 1, 2019
The Wobbling Compass: An Identity Crisis

by Judy Mzungu

A blank canvas. That’s what we all once were. Handed to our families, to society, to the environment around us – to write the script of our lives. A script which, if not altered, sadly becomes our life story.

Some – no, most of us actually blend into the environment. We fit in perfectly. We become like those around us – Conforming to become accepted. We are not threatening. We don’t change the status quo. Life happens to us. We dare not make it happen. We are quite at home… Satisfied with the script.

And then there’s the Odd One Out.  The world cannot just define you. You don’t fit into a box. No color describes you. Actually, you are a rainbow – mutating into many shades, depending on your circumstances. It takes a discerning eye to see past the facade, and somehow catch the real person that lies within.

You try to do the ‘normal’ things; You try to fit in. It’s lonely. You long to be accepted. You long to be like the rest of them. You are perplexed. The truth is, no one around you really figures you out. You are just different. And that’s exactly how you were meant to be.

The beauty of living is that you will rarely go through something someone else has not gone through.
There is a story of a young boy, Moses, recorded in the Bible.  Moses was born at a time when the Egyptian Pharaoh had issued an order to his people to kill all Hebrew boys born around that period. He was rescued by Pharaoh’s daughter, who had mercy on him – and raised him in the palace as her own.

While Moses was a Hebrew, he was raised as an Egyptian. He definitely grew up practicing the norms and customs of a royal Egyptian – yet deep inside the Hebrew in him was calling. He simply didn’t fit in his environment. Moses was different.

After Moses had grown up, he was sensitized to the plight of his people – and in reaction to an Egyptian’s mistreatment of a Hebrew, he killed the Egyptian. He would have thought he would be celebrated for defending his own; yet in a later incident, when in confrontation with a fellow Hebrew, the Hebrew used Moses’ killing of the Egyptian against him. That must have been really confusing for Moses.

It was a moment of reckoning. It finally dawned on him – he was neither Hebrew nor Egyptian.
And so it is with the Odd One Out. Defined by the values of your family and the society you were raised in, by your situation, by the environment around you; yet, something deep inside of you does not resonate with your external circumstances.

You are in an Identity Crisis. Unsettled with where you are; Uncomfortable with what defined you. The compass of your Destiny is wobbling… placing a demand upon you to move. Yet you are afraid, stagnated by the comfort of the Known.

Like Moses, you might need a situation to force you to leave… Perhaps an unexpected turn of events, a loss, a little disappointment – whatever it takes for you to move into the Unknown, a strange land – your version of ‘Midian’. This is a place of refuge, a temporary abode – where you can catch your breath, find a level of acceptance, a semblance of normalcy – at least on the outside. Even then, it must register that this is not home.

The whole point about ‘not fitting in’ is to make you Uncomfortable. Uncomfortable enough not to settle. Uncomfortable enough to dig into your deepest recesses – and develop inner strength and character essential for the rest of your Journey. Uncomfortable enough to Stand Out.

While you are in this place, prepare to take your lessons – and have your backpack ready.
Any time soon, Destiny will come calling again…and move you to a place closer to your True North;
The place where your Compass will finally settle.

Before then, Keep On Moving…….

And find solace in the company of the Apostle Paul in Philippians 3:13-14 where he says;

Brothers, I do not consider myself yet to have taken of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus. Until You Find That True North; BON VOYAGE!

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