Identity Crisis

Shawna has been such a sweet friend to me in Denver.  Her laugh is infectious, her heart for Jesus is so genuine, and her wisdom is shared with such ease and humility.  She is now a counselor, helping many people through her kindness, listening heart, and empathetic nature.  You can find her blogging at: babysteppingdowntheroad.wordpress.com
When Kallie first asked me to write a guest post on her blog I was honored that she thought I would have something of value to contribute. Isn’t that true of all of us though, at one time or another? We sometimes think we’ve got something to offer, but then we second guess ourselves and decide: nope, we probably don’t. And as I think about that, isn’t that cruel, the way we downplay what we have? We never even give ourselves an opportunity to share what we’ve got, to grow and develop into the people God created us to be. We just shut it down.
Downplaying and negating what I have to offer is something I have been tempted with and have fought with myself over and over. See, I knew I wanted to be a counselor from the time I was 13, and I set out on that path. It was who I was. It was the role I was meant to grow into. Before I was hired as a therapist at my office, I would go back and forth trying to decide whether I even had anything to offer, and I was so afraid I had nothing to give to help those who would be my clients.
When I first stepped into this new role of being a counselor at the beginning of this year, I like to say I had – and may still be having – an identity crisis. I say this because I stepped into a new role, which consequently led me to the process of discovering more of who I was created to be. My identity was shifting. I was no longer Shawna the administrative assistant, student, nanny, or any other role I have had in the last several years. No, I stepped into what I believe I was called to do, and took a step into shifting my identity to being Shawna the counselor, to becoming more of who I was meant to be. Really, becoming more of me. And I am still discovering what this means. I don’t believe that we ever truly stop discovering more about ourselves. This life is not a static experience, but rather it’s such a truly dynamic one. Every relationship we encounter, every experience we have gives us an opportunity to grow, to learn something more about who we are and how we interact with others.
As I continue in my journey of discovering my identity, and who I am as a counselor, in my new-ish career role, I see more of who God created me to be being drawn out, and while it often feels as though a crisis is going on inside me, I love seeing myself take on the counselor role and finding that who I am is exactly the person God wants me to bring to my clients. He put the desire in me to do this, and even though sometimes I feel that I can’t, I’m reminded of a quote I found a while ago (yes, I am one of those people who save up quotes written with materials from my office supply addiction 🙂 for such occasions as this). This quote said: “God does not call the equipped, He equips the called.” God has called each one of us; He has created each one of us for a purpose specific to us. We don’t get to know how it will go at the beginning, though I admit I have often thought that would be so much easier, but I guess it’d also be pretty boring. God gives us what we need in order to do what He has called us to, and then we get to discover our role in what He wants us to do. We get to discover just what exactly we have that He has given us so we can fulfill the purpose He has set before us. For so long I’ve prayed: “Lord, help me to be the woman you have created me to be.” He’s doing just that. He’s drawing out, refining, sharpening what He knows I have, and most of all blossoming me into who He wants me to be. May I never stop Him from continuing, nor get in the way of letting this process happen.
May who God created you to be, be called out.

Baby stepping with you my friend, 
Shawna

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One of those twenty-somethings trying to find my way through this silly world. I write to process, and sometimes send those thoughts out into the void. Passionate about Jesus and people and bringing those two together. Living in and loving Denver. Working with college students, who are the coolest. Seeking Jesus in everything.

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