In the movie, The Greatest Showman, there is a song titled, “This is Me”. This song is an anthem for all those who struggle with how they are perceived and, in many cases, even how they may see themselves.
For many, this is due to the way they have been treated their entire lives.
Knowing people who have struggled with who and how they are, I have watched them move from place to place and situation to situation with the same desire we all share. The desire be known.
I believe their cry is “this is me” and in that cry lies a universal truth. We all want to be seen and accepted.
In my exposure to folks who struggle with belonging, I have developed a heart that breaks for them.
You see, although I have felt and can feel alone in a crowd, I have never had a problem being a part of the crowd. The loneliness I may feel while being a part of a group must pale in comparison to someone who is excluded from the group entirely.
In a world where so many seem to be fixated on making sure everyone is accepted, you would think those on the outside looking in would be invited in, simply because of the stated desire to include everyone.
Since this is not the case, I can only conclude allowing people to have their place is not necessarily in the same place some have created for themselves. The hypocrisy in this statement speaks to the reality people will always exclude those who are not like them.
The irony is in the past, they would admit it. While today, the inclusivity being proclaimed is all just lip service.
“This is me”, should be something we can all be proud of and be accepted for.
Here is where the beauty of our differences needs to be recognized instead of the ugliness that divides us.
Where do we go from here? How do we begin to see the value someone can bring to our lives because of who they are instead of devaluing them because they are not like us?
The only way is to realize, we are all different.
Despite this truth, we all share a desire to be seen and accepted for who we are. Although this may be easier for some, we all need to remember, if this is not us, it does not mean we won’t find ourselves on the outside looking in someday.
The key is to look inward, and realize we all want to be loved, valued, and considered. When we are not, there is pain and hurt that may stay with us for a lifetime.
Even as I write this, I am keenly aware of the fact I am different than you or whomever may be reading this. However, as I consider my life and the times where I have not been included or accepted. I would like to remind myself and all those who may be experiencing this feeling on a regular basis.
“This is me”, and we are all more than enough just the way we are!
Colossians 3:12, "Put on then, as God's chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience.”