Have you ever noticed that we wear names and titles like a favourite old shirt? They become a staple in our wardrobe, something we cling to as familiar and comfortable. They are unflattering, maybe even off-putting to others. Maybe even to us. But we can’t quite work up the energy or even the courage, to let them go. We feel naked without them; they have become the fabric of us. Other times we know it’s time to throw them out but we are too uncomfortable to go without. We want to wait until something better comes along, but we’re too timid to look for something better.
I’ve worn a lot of names and titles. Some of them were unflattering. 😉
This week, a worship leader shared that she lost her office admin. job in her home church because of COVID-19. She understood, and was still participating as a volunteer in other areas. Yet she struggled with feelings of anger and hurt, and feelings of guilt for feeling angry and hurt. She was part of things but somehow felt like she was now on the outside. I understood. I still struggle with feelings of anger and hurt after leaving my job too. I’m part of things but often feel like I’m on the outside, no longer valued, simply because I’m not wearing that title any more. Anger, hurt, guilt – it’s all part of the grieving process and one can’t just snap their fingers and be over it. How I wanted so much to share something meaningful with her that would help her.
As I tried to craft a written response, God heard the unformed thoughts of my own heart. He reminded me that my title was never Office Administrator – that was just my job. My title is not Worship Leader, or Ministry Leader, or Blogger, or even Mom. My title is Child of God (John 1:12). Everything else flows out from there. Anything else that was or will be also flows out from there. It’s the only shirt I will ever need to wear.