To be authentic takes honest introspection. Introspection takes time and quiet.
In our fast-paced society we leave little time for reflection. For many people life hits them in the face, and they are too busy reacting to take time to ask themselves if they are in the right place, doing the right thing, relating to the right people.
“Is this the authentic me?” This is a question too few of us ask, or if we ask it, we don’t remain still long enough to find the answer.
Prayer and meditation help us move toward more balanced lives. As we begin to know ourselves better —our talents, gifts, and abilities—we can see which things need to be released and which ones should be retained in our lives.
Many of us wait too long before choosing prayer as an option. When calamity strikes, we automatically turn to prayer, even if it’s not usually a part of our lives. In addition to offering up the desperate prayers of our anguished souls, we need to learn to sit quietly before God and listen for the “still small voice.”
When the Old Testament prophet Elijah forgot God was in charge, he went from a strong, larger-than-life figure to a cowering, pathetic creature, fearing for his life. (1 Kings 19:3-4)
I do the same thing. I have to constantly remind myself that I’m not in this life alone. I don’t have to make big decisions alone. I don’t have to write books and hope to get them published alone. I can turn to God and ask for help, comfort, wisdom—all the things I need to make life what it should be.
How about you? Is it time to admit you can’t do life on your own? Time to release those things that you just can’t do and embrace what you were intended to do? Time to let go of the person you think others expect you to be for the person you were created to be?
Take some time to reflect quietly. Take lots of time to reflect quietly. Thank God for the abundance all around you and ask for guidance in being a part of God’s kingdom right now, right here. You may find that you don’t have to chase authenticity. Like an elusive butterfly, it may land on your shoulder when you are still and quiet.