Updated: Mar 2, 2020
I have been in rehearsals for a few weeks for Disaster! the musical. Parker and I both have the opportunity to be in the cast and it's been so fun getting to know new people and challenging ourselves with song and dance. The other day, we were learning new choreography (tap, no less) and I have a really hard time picking up choreography quickly. I didn't ever do extensive dance training and any training I did do was SO long ago. Those moves are not in my muscle memory. I do well when I can practice, but doing it in the moment...I struggle.
So, we are in rehearsal and I am trying my best and feel pretty good about my efforts. Our director gave an overall note that she was seeing a lot of "floppy arms". Now, this is so ridiculous, but in my head I thought: "she definitely isn't talking about me, my arms are straight." Obviously, you know where this is headed. She sent out the video later that night and, sure enough, I had floppy arms. Immediately, my mind went back to all of the psychological studies I have looked at where people over emphasized positive qualities in themselves or under emphasized their negative ones. How did I convince myself that that note wasn't for me, when it so clearly was? Do I do this in my normal life, too!? The answer is, of course, yes! We all do! We see negative qualities or behaviors in others and judge when we, most likely, are acting in similar ways. We read the scriptures and think "that's obviously not for me, but Frank over there...".
Let me save you from an embarrassing realization at some point: it's you. You have the floppy arms! And it's okay, in fact, it's more than okay. I needed to see my floppy arms to fix it. The fact that we have areas in our life that need fixing is not the problem, but refusing to acknowledge it is! And, if you have someone in your life that is refusing to recognize their floppy arms, consider this: the times when I am least likely to embrace my weaknesses is when I feel insecure, meaning unloved or unaccepted by those who should love me most. If we want to change, we need love and acceptance. The best news? You don't have to wait for someone else to give that to you! God is there, ready to pour out a knowledge of His love for you whenever you are ready for it. It takes time, effort, and vulnerability (just like any relationship), but it's so worth it.
If we want others to change, we can definitely speed the process along by offering a mirror of that love to them every day.