January 15, 2019

My middle name is Whaley. It’s a southern thing. Naming your child after the momma’s middle name. It just turned into a difficult choice when I had a love for ice cream at the exact time I had a hatred for running long distances. My baby brother is Carter. I used to cringe anytime the name game started. “Carter, bo barter, banana, fanna.” Well, you get the picture. Being a kid can be tough. We are given these labels and assumed identities and more often than not- these lies become the soundtracks to our lives- Playing out in songs and sprints as we learn to make sense of our place in this world. We come to believe we are what people say we are. We believe the hype without ever really questioning who gave us these names in the first place. Sadly enough, I can walk into a room at 34 and still feel 13. I’m convinced people have me figured out and that their assumptions of me render me unworthy. Unwelcome. I think of Forest Gump on the bus- “you can’t sit here” Metaphorically speaking, I never thought there was room at the table. Sometimes, I still don’t. Unfortunately, I’ve found that it is this lie that binds us as women more than any other Satan as ever written. For me, the only way to defeat these half-truths has become rather simple. It’s taken years of practice and even more long looks into the mirror reciting some pretty defining words- “I am who He says I am.” You see- people will always have opinions. They will always have labels and gossip and agendas. But I don’t need their approval because I have His. When the Lord sees me- He sees His son and a daughter whose identity was firmly established on a cross more than 2000 years ago. That means that there is always room at the table, there is always a seat on the bus. We can sit together, at the place He perfectly crafted for me and for you. So let’s lose the labels of the world. Let’s let go of the identities someone else gave us so we can drink wine and eat Ice cream and rest firmly in the Savior who thinks we are totally awesome, no matter the name, or age, or weight, or baggage we bring with us. We can sit soundly in the furious love of the God who gives us the only label we will ever need- His.
The Girls of Charley's 😘

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