Hi, my name is...
**Hey Readers! I've been doing some reflection and internal building and it has inspired me for this week's blog. Let's jump in!**
When you say your name out loud when introducing yourself to people, do you feel anything on the inside? Does any amount of confidence, pleasure or gratitude stand up inside of you when you present yourself to people in this world? Can you truly say you are proud of your name? I wanted to talk about names this week because I believe their is power, authority and assurance in a name. I believe in the power attached to waking up everyday and knowing exactly who you are. I believe in the authority you gain in declaring that you are something great. I believe giving that greatness a name is often the very thing that fuels our assurance of our place in this world at large.
First, a little context...
Their was a time in my life where I did not know who I was. I'm not talking about purpose. When I said my name "Rahdyah" out loud, I felt nothing. I felt no sense of confidence and their was nothing I could think about that made me proud to present myself to the world. I sounded weak introducing myself to people. That weakness was because of an emptiness inside of me; an emptiness that needed grounding. For a long while, I walked around with a smile on my face but internally I was looking for someone to just tell me who I was. What was so great about me? What did I have to be proud about? Where was the evidence of greatness that I could stand up for? It was difficult. It was confusing. As a result of not knowing who I was, I fell into trying to find out about myself in wrong ways... the type of ways that would hurt me instead of help me. I call them Emptiness Fillers. Some people's "emptiness fillers" are drugs, gluttony, sex, alcoholism, over working themselves, hoarding, etc. My "emptiness filler" was relationships.
I defined my purpose in this world at that time by building and staying in romantic relationships with guys that I thought could constantly affirm me. My objective was "if I became the best partner to them, my name would finally mean something in this life because their is a greater attachment to it". It was only at this present day moment in my life that I realize that those relationships were rooted in transaction for me but romance for them that later became a living hell for the both of us.(lol I'm laughing today but back then, it wasn't funny)
Let's be clear *clears throat* ...
When YOU don't know who you are, you are subject to believe in whatever any one or any thing tells you you are!
So when my "emptiness filler" no longer worked for me, it created tension. I became frustrated because the transactional foundation I unknowingly built by not understanding who I was began to shake and crumble. As it began to crumble, I became someone. I became a person that I hated looking at in the mirror because it was a person formed out of the result of the atmosphere I created as a broken individual and what I dealt with inside of the relationships just as a girlfriend. (We will dive deeper into the topic of unhealthy relationships in another blog entry) I just want to paint a picture for you about the importance of knowing who you are. It is imperative that you learn who you are.
Let's Get Practical
- One way to begin to learn who you are is by getting alone. Being as though my emptiness filler required me to be in the presence of another person, this was extremely hard for me...but I did it. The relationships ended and I began isolating myself. For an entire year I closed off. I became vulnerable about how I truly felt when writing in my journal. I dated myself. I went to restaurants alone and had meals. I bought snacks and caught late movies at the theater alone. I went shopping and got my nails and feet done by myself. I began reading books in my room and just praying for God to help me appreciate how he made me. I encourage anyone who is unsure about who they are, to try these things by themselves. This gives you a sense of what you like and don't like, what makes you laugh and what makes you cry, what brings you joy and what scares you. You are learning. In this way you are able to see your personality come out in more ways than one because you have responded to what you exposed yourself to.
- Another way to learn who you are is by going through the ups and downs of life. These kinds of things are unpredictable but they build within us so much wisdom, strength, endurance and integrity. Sometimes we are thrown into situations where we have to make decisions that tests our character, our judgment and our morals. We have to decipher the outcome of the type of person we will be as a result of those decisions. We have to think about the impact. Often times, especially if you're young, you make decisions on impulse and regret who you turned into after the fact. We have to be careful of that but such is life. It happens.
- A third way to learn who you are is by looking at the environment and the people around you. Look at your parents/guardians. What kind of people raised you? , what kind of people are you admiring and looking up to? How is the environment around you affecting how you feel about yourself? Are you motivated to be greater? Are you inspired by what you see? Begin to learn about your family history and culture. Does any of what you've learned spark interest in you? Why? These things give you a foundation. They give you something to build off of as you begin to discover your individuality.
Let's Get Spiritual
Last but certainly never least in the many ways to learn who you are is by learning about what God says about you. First, you must know that God created all of us in his image (reference Genesis 1:27). Surely He knows the intentions behind why he did so and I can tell you right now that they are all good intentions. (reference Jeremiah 29:11) I encourage you to begin this journey in prayer. Ask God for the eyes to see yourself in the way that He sees you. When you are reading His word, you will find that it is littered with how much he loves you and how much he wants to give you the very best; just as any great father would for his child. Start there. Start with understanding the truth about how the Creator of the heavens and the earth began to call YOU his child. (talk about a history lesson).
Once you have welcomed Christ into your life, that is one of your names. If you know nothing else about yourself, know that you are a child of the King of Kings and because of that, you have a new name. Your name in the spiritual realm is powerful so when you begin to declare it in the natural realm, you are exercising that power in your every day life. You are shaking up and intimidating things in the kingdom of darkness when you declare your name and at the same time you are building yourself up in authority. When you begin to learn the benefits of being connected to God as his child, you are available to access the life of abundance God so willingly wants to give you. (reference John 10:10)
Inside of that life, you will find joy, peace, prosperity, true love, strength, endurance, longevity etc. so that when you face life's hardships and they begin to make you doubt who you are, you can then access that power because it has already been downloaded and activated inside of you. (reference Ephesians 3:20) That power is the Holy Spirit. I'm not a preacher, I just want you to understand that their is power in you! When you forget your name, the Holy Spirit is there to remind you!
Today I can confidently profess : Hi, my name's Rahdyah. I am very silly, corky, a deep thinker, an empath, a King's kid, a spiritual sniper for Christ and a sensitive soul. I am apologetically myself.
Learning who you are takes time and you will forever be evolving so pay attention to your shifts. Growing in the confidence of knowing who you are takes even longer; but it's worth it. It's worth the isolation. It's worth the people who meant you no good to walk away because they feel you've 'changed'. You did. You found you. You found God. The next time you introduce yourself, I want you to think on these things. Maybe you need to dig deep in learning who you are and this blog post has helped you in some way. Maybe you already know who you are but you've been struggling in this season and you needed a pick me up. Whatever it is, know that I'm rooting for you!
Until next time, Blessings!