I am a Chameleon
by Beth Mabe Gianopulos
Tuesday, January 31, 2017
Still, God, you are our Father.We’re the clay and you’re our potter: All of us are what you made us. Isaiah 64:8 (MSG)
Chameleons are magnificent creatures. When a chameleon senses danger, a chameleon can change its skin color to blend in with its surroundings. For example, when a chameleon is surrounded by green leaves, it turns a green color that perfectly blends with the surroundings. This camouflage is necessary to protect them and keep them safe.
For years, I was a chameleon. In my heart, I sensed a constant danger – I feared that if anyone knew the real me, the me that no one else knew, they would not love me. I feared that people only loved me for who I was to them at the time - my friends loved me for my laughter and outgoing personality, my teachers loved me for my discipline and intellectual curiosity, my family loved me because I was eager to please and compliant.
For me, the greatest danger I faced was the danger of rejection. To avoid this danger, I camouflaged myself by adapting to the situation that I was in. At work, I was disciplined and hardworking. With friends, I was fun loving and entertaining. With people that were hurting, I was compassionate.
I was not intentionally deceiving others. Like a chameleon, the many colors that I changed between were a part of who I was. However, I was constantly changing colors to blend in so that I would be safe, accepted, valued and loved. Because I was so busy changing colors, I failed to be the color that God created me to be. I failed to be me.
God created me to be me. God created you to be you. When we embrace that God loves us as we are, we no longer have to live in fear – we are free to be. Isaiah 68:4 says that we are the clay and God is our potter. We are what God made us. Jeremiah 1:5a (MSG) says, “Before I shaped you in the womb, I knew all about you. Before you saw the light of day, I had holy plans for you.“
If I am so busy becoming who everyone else wants me to be, I fail to be the person God created me to be. God has holy plans for you, and God has holy plans for me. However, in order to fulfill those plans, I need to be the person God created me to be.
We are God’s workmanship – uniquely and beautifully made. You do not need to live in fear because you are loved, just as you are. You are free to be you and I am free to be me – we are free to be the beautiful creations that God desires for us to be.
Jesus, When I feel the need to blend in and be accepted, remind me that You love me just as I am. Remind me that I have a purpose, and that I am beautifully and wonderfully made. Thank You for molding me into the person that You want me to be. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
© 2017 by Beth Mabe Gianopulos. All rights reserved.
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Originally published Tuesday, 31 January 2017.