Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, “Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?” Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Marianne Williamson
Meditation: Most of my younger life I have been afraid not to be “good enough”. This seems to be a common fear of children of both secular parents and religious parents alike. However, it seems to me that children of secular parents are less afraid of embracing their power than children of religious parents might be. Religious parents and teachers often urge children early on to be humble, to be aware of their darkness and faults and to examine and confess their sins at all times. This seems helpful in some ways, as children become aware of their limitations early in life. However, do we allow the children of our religious communities also to celebrate their power and not be afraid of it? Do religious children grow up letting their talent shine? Do we encourage them to choose positions of leadership and influence? Who are we not to see ourselves as powerful if we see ourselves as children of God? As parents of teenage girls I am trying to empower them. I pay attention to see where their passion, their talent and their brilliance might lead them. And then I trust the Holy Spirit to strengthen them along the way, as they are on their journey of finding their power-filled and difference making place in this world.
Prayer: Empowering God, You want us to be aware of our limitations, our shadows and our sin. But You don’t want us to define ourselves through them. You delight in our brilliance, our talents and our strengths, as You have created us with them. You want us to not be afraid to shine, to take leadership and to make a difference in this world. You give us power so that we will use it wisely and powerfully in Your name. And we are grateful for Your creative and powerful Spirit living in us. Amen
Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Ephesians 6:10 (NIV)