Will the Real Me Please Stand Up?

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“What was your biggest struggle in high school?” It has been two years since Katelyn graduated and I wanted to see how she saw things now that she was out. Her reply: “All the energy I spent, and sometimes still do, trying to project and keep up my ‘image.’”

Facebook, MySpace, texting, outfits, hair styles, room decorations, cell phones. They all say something. So with careful planning, you create the image of who you want to be; whether that image is truth or not.

Recently, Tyra Banks was dragging it all out in the open. Her panel on the show that day was made up of young teenage girls. The topic: Sexting. The surprise guests: their mothers. My two daughters and I watched as fifteen, fourteen and even thirteen-year-old girls talked very frankly of the explicit language and nude pictures that are regularly exchanged between teens. Why? Attention. Attention that they didn’t get by being themselves. Attention that they did get when they began to project a different image.

What about you? What image are you portraying? Is the gal at the supper table each evening the same gal on the MySpace page? Are you one girl when you pray to the Lord at night and a different one when you are texting in the dark? Is each outfit chosen and each stray hair put in place to make sure that others will want to hang out with you?

In Acts 5, Peter was being pushed and pulled by those around him who called the shots, the guys who determined who was in and who was out (they had so much power they could determine who would live and who would die!). Peter’s answer to these dudes was, “It is better to obey God rather than men.”

Now you may look at this image control deal and say, “It is not a matter of obeying God or not. You are taking it too far.” But I challenge you to take a second look. Are you being truthful? Are you projecting the same person around your parents as around your friends, as around your coach, as around your teachers? Are you being the real you or are you trying to be someone else? And if you are projecting two different images, why are you?

Jesus knew some guys who were really into trying to create a great image. In Matthew 23:5 He says, "Everything they do is done for men to see” (NIV). Later in verse 28 He says, “In the same way, on the outside you appear to people as righteous but on the inside you are full of hypocrisy and wickedness.”

Maybe you are embarrassed about your faith. Standing for something when everyone else is falling for everything is beyond hard. Yet in 2 Timothy 1:12 Paul challenges Timothy, “…Yet I am not ashamed, because I know whom I have believed, and am convinced that he is able to guard what I have entrusted to him for that day” (NIV). I believe that includes our image!

So, I challenge you, look at your life through a new lens. Does each aspect of your life reflect that you are an ambassador of Christ as it says in 2 Corinthians 5:20? If not, ask yourself “Will the real me stand up?”

For more encouragement on this subject, visit Lynn’s blog: www.HeIsThatIntoYou.com.

© 2010 by Lynn Cowell. All rights reserved.



Anonymous Anonymous said...

How very true....I have a teen-aged step daughter and a step son who is coming right behind her. I have just recently found Proverbs 31 and have enjoyed everything there tremendously! Today, I found my way to your website. I will introduce you to my children tonight and I would love to win a copy of "Do the Hard Thing"!

Thank you for your ministry!!

Have a wonderful day!


WOW what an awesome site i have a girl who needs this so much and belive it or not i do to i am still stuck in middle school when "the girls" decided they didn't like me and all got up from the lunch table and left me there ALONE it was near summer break so the summer a before high school i had no friends and started hight school alone and scared. i have never been able to get past that feeling of insurcuity i am going to be 48 and i know it shouldn't matter but it does i worry if i don't hear from my friends or if the do something without asking me i feel so lost and left out i am tring to find god and let him be my friend but i need a friend that speaks out loud to me. i would love to win your book but even if i don't i will be back to your site to grow and learn how to be a rad mom and move past all the fitting in mess.

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I would love to win the book and t-shirt!! Love Proverbs 31 and Living with Purpose!! I have shared it many times with friends and 13 year old daughter!! The t-shirt would be a great conversation starter! We have 3 daughters 13, 11 and 8. The times we live in now are sooo much different than when we were teens. We have got to equip ourselves with God's truth and any other resources that are available to help us raise our teens the Godly way!
Thank you for your ministry!!

Blogger ca_blond said...

Thanks for this post. As a Youth Director I am always looking for relevant topics to keep me in tune with my youth. I am going to share this with my girls and see if it generates any conversation.

Blogger Jason and Amy said...

WOW!!! Your blog is awesome and I am going to share this with my teenage daughter, 14 years old. She is struggling with so many things today. We do homeschooling now due to so many things that have happened to her in the public setting. We are new to Proverbs 31 but it is something we reference in our daily devotions. I would love to win a copy of " Do the Hard Thing " for my daughter!!!

Thank you and God Bless!

Amelia Carter

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