I can (however faintly) remember being a teenager. Common ground with peers was the firm footing my feet always sought. If we bought our clothes at the same places, listened to the same music, laughed at the same jokes, I was somehow stamped as okay. Accepted. Real. If my friends cared about what I cared about then I must be caring about the right things.
But the grown up beloved woman is already validated. Beyond valid, she is accepted. Beyond accepted, she is known. Deeply, by the One Who made her. Beyond being known, she is cherished. She does not need outside uniformity and conformity to give a green light to her expression of who she is.
Earlier in her 31 Days to Change the World series, Emily wrote so eloquently that we must know our passions. What is the most important thing to us to create, move, do, change? Answering that question and accepting that our answer will be different from others we admire and respect is essential to the beloved life.
It is also the first step to a beloved life that celebrates the beauty in the diversity of creation. When we can move beyond seeing others as mirrors in which we check out our own validity or tuning forms by which we try to pitch our voices, we not only start living out the unique story to which we are called. We have eyes to see, ears to hear, and hearts to appreciate others’ passions. It adds a humble richness to the beloved life to celebrate others without scrambling to replicate their work and words in our own.
When we are living out our beloved story, there is rest and peace in that, knowing we aren’t called to everything. Life is not a huge game of Whack-a-Mole, trying to throw a bit of our souls at everything that is important to everyone. Rather, it’s weaving ourselves into the greater story, thankful for all the threads, all the colors and textures.