During school, I was never considered one of the popular kids. A teacher’s kid wasn’t popular unless they were rebellious and Christian girls weren’t popular unless they…well, were rebellious. Having 2 strikes against you – I followed the rules and faculty and staff liked me, plus I was stickler about purity, especially mine, I dreamed of one day, being popular.
I recently shared this with my husband and then with a certain friend who needed some encouragement. But now, the rest of the world is about to know…
When reality doesn’t give you what you want, you can make up places where it all goes right for you. In my “world” I was married to Prince William and I was a Broadway star. (Now that I think about it, I was drawn to PW b/c he looked like and reminded me of my first “boyfriend” – who liked me as a preacher’s kid, in frilly, flowery church dresses and smurf glasses.) I traveled the US and the world, always getting the role of the leading lady. I won awards, people liked me, I was kind to the common people and we were the most beloved couple on both sides of the Lake. This imagined life started when I was 13, in the 8th grade. And lasted me until I was 20.
One night, laying in bed, God spoke to me and said “Your dreams will never come true if you keep creating them in fake places!” (See Steven Furtick’s blog) Was God telling me that I would marry Prince William and become a Broadway star? No, I took it to mean that my wish for popularity would never become real if I kept just imagining things.
So, as my friend put it, Will and I got a “divorce”. I was able to redefine popularity – no longer was it “being liked by everybody”. Popularity became “having friends that like the real me.” Before I could get the friends, I had to go on a hunt for the real me. In this process, I became active in our new church, started dating a guy (who is now my husband), and made some new friends.
I had really thought that I had overcome and escaped that desire for popularity. But now, I’m on a new level – 5 years post-fantasy. (See one of Ken’s blogs) I’m a part of a great time with great leaders doing great things in the local church and the Kingdom of God. And old popularity has come back to see me. This time, it’s critics -they say my husband requires too much from others, he’s pushy, he’s demanding, we spend too much time at church. And the people who liked hanging out with us on the lower level don’t want to hang out with us on the new level. I feel like I have to bribe people to hang out with us – invite them to my house, spend my money, and feed them my food.
How would you feel if you found out your friends went out without you? Or see pictures on facebook of a great party that all your friends went to but you didn’t even get invited? (See another of Ken’s blogs)
I thought I had gotten away from the desires to be popular and have lots of friends (that’s my terrorist). Guess not!
I’ve decided that God makes people uncomfortable. And as I get closer to God, people leave me. So, is it still worth it? It is to me!! You can walk away if you want to.
(P.S. I wrote this blog on 2/28 and wasn’t quite sure if I wanted to post it. So, after seeing several things this week that spoke to this same issue, I decided I would – it’s time to call this terrorist out!)