“It’s not easy being green
It seems you blend in with so many other ordinary things
And people tend to pass you over ’cause you’re not standing out
Like flashy sparkles in the water or stars in the sky”
In one of his more melancholy moments, Kermit the Frog seems to capture how I feel about myself at times. When my faults, weaknesses, and mistakes seem to fly in my face, it’s easy to be discouraged. I sing along with my amphibious friend, “It’s not easy being… me.” When I see others doing extraordinary things, I feel so… ordinary.
Sometimes, it’s the comparison with others that gets me into trouble. As kids, we all grew up wanting to be super-heroes or policemen or Army Rangers or star athletes or famous musicians. We long to stand out and be recognized rather than blend in and be overlooked. Even during times when we feel like we’re appreciated by others, things can change very quickly. My friend, Monty Huffington says about a job layoff, “I went from a ‘Who’s Who?’ to a ‘Who’s He?’…and it takes about 20 minutes.” Comparing ourselves to others or seeking approval from others can make us question whether we are really “remarkably and wonderfully made” (Psalm 139:14) after all.
Looking at our world, or at others, may or may not be the only problem for moments of melancholy. Maybe it’s simply that we’re spending more time in environments, situations, or relationships that are draining our energy. When we’re unaware of who God made us to be, we find our selves trying to serve Him or others in a way He didn’t design us to serve.
Our Creator wants us to look to Him and see our selves as He sees us. His Spirit says to our Spirit ― you’re incredibly important just as you are — a precious child of God (Romans 8:16). Recognizing that we were uniquely created by our loving Creator, He lifts us up from the dump and puts us on His Holy hill. The psalmist says, “Your eyes saw me when I was formless; all my days were written in your book and planned before a single one of them began” (Psalm 139:16). How we view ourselves is only part of the problem. How we are working to serve God may be a concern as well. The apostle Paul tells us, “we are all God’s creation ― created in Christ Jesus for good works which God prepared ahead of time so that we should walk in them” (Ephesians 2:10). In order to have a deeper appreciation to God for how He made us, we have to have a greater understanding of what He made us to be individually.
A while back, some friends and I embarked on a great adventure of discovering the way God has uniquely created us by taking a personal inventory called “Servants by Design.” Without getting into all the details of the tool, I rediscovered the strengths that God has given me, insights into how I tend to view life, the people and activities that make me come alive, and the environments that help me best express myself as God made me. I’m also refreshed with the reminders of the situations and conditions that cause considerable distress, fatigue, and difficulty. Sometimes there’s nothing I can do about my weaknesses but trust God’s grace in order for Christ’s power to work through me for His glory (2 Corinthians 12:9-10).
I often talk too much. Most of the time, I’m too loud. Sometimes, I’m just boring. I’m still learning and growing, though, and must continue to remember, that God made me different from everyone else. He made you unique, too! And that’s a good thing.
At the conclusion of his song, Kermit the Frog realizes,
When green is all there is to be
it could make you wonder why
But why wonder? why wonder?
I am green, and it’ll do fine
It’s beautiful, and I think it’s what I want to be.