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What is real?

“Blessed is the man who perseveres under trial, because when he has stood the test, he will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him.” James 1:12

“What is real?” asked the Rabbit… “Does it happen all at once like being wound up,” he asked, “or bit by bit?”

“It doesn’t happen all at once,” said the Skin Horse. “You become.  It takes a long time. That’s why it doesn’t often happen to people who break easily…”
My most favorite story of all time is The Velveteen Rabbit, by Margery Williams.  I’m sure my mom read me lots of stories growing up, but this one is still my favorite.  I love the long insightful talks the Rabbit shares with the Skin Horse – especially about becoming real.  Perhaps because it’s been something I myself have struggled with for so long.

I wonder if anyone else ever struggles with who they are.  Like if they could just be this, or act like that, then…then finally they would “feel” real.  I know that’s how I felt.  I just wanted to be me, but at the same time, not be “me” at all.  And I wanted it to happen instantly – all at once like being wound up.
Oh, I got wound up alright, but unfortunately, I got wound up about all the wrong things.  And most times when that happens, it’s easier to get caught up in things you had no business in anyway.  And it seems the more you get caught up in things, the more difficult it becomes to keep up with everything, and somehow everything appears to be more manageable if you just fake it.  Like a toy that winds up and goes through the motions, but in the end you discover it couldn’t do things by itself, and it wasn’t real at all. 

If only I’d remembered the wise old Skin Horse’s response to the Rabbit.  “It doesn’t happen all at once. You become.”  I guess it’s taken me this long to figure that out.  It’s a hard thing sometimes, to be at peace with who you are – to fully accept that maybe you are just as God designed you to be, but that He just isn’t finished with you yet.  And that’s okay.  Life isn’t about the instant.  Maybe God is writing a story, a story that demonstrates His love for us.

“Blessed is the man who perseveres under trial, because when he has stood the test, he will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him,” James 1:12.  Life is not easy.  But when you take off the mask of pretending and trust that God will walk with you on this journey, then you become. That’s why, “it doesn’t often happen to people who break easily…”  

Dear Heavenly Father,

Thank you for continuing your work in my heart and in my life.  Thank you for helping me to become real.  I know, as do you, that this has not been an easy journey for me.  But please continue to walk with me and reveal to me those things that keep me from living life to the fullest.  Please don’t ever leave me, for you truly are the only REAL One that matters.

I love you.

Amen

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1 thought on “What is real?”

  1. I can't tell you how many times in my life I have wished that I could be “real” or feel “real”. Whatever that is. I know what you mean. When we were recently serving at The Big Live, there was a moment when I fully felt that. Like, this is being alive. Jesus is the reality that never changes for me. I cling to Him.
    Susan

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