So I've been wanting to see Akeelah and the Bee for quite some time now. Actually, I've been wanting to see it since I saw it advertised all over Starbucks a couple of Christmases ago... I've been sucked in, I know. Anyway, I was pretty impressed. I'd get my kids to see it... if I had any.
There was a powerful quote in the movie:
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. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won't feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It is not just in some of us; it is in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.
The quote has mistakenly been associated with Nelson Mandela. Well, there's a connection... the quote is actually by Marianne Williamson. Claimed Christian with Jewish roots, I'm not sure I know enough about her to make an informed comment about her books. But I can say that the quote has an innate truth to it.
We all project God's glory. And our false definition of humility will often make ourselves hide the glorious image that God has placed in us. Our being forgiven for our sinfulness allows us to take pride in the cross of Jesus and allow God's glory to shine... and the result is liberation for all around us.
I often find myself shrinking, like I want to be a martyr.... the dirty secret to someone else's success. But this is not truth. God grants us a special confidence because leaning on him changes the way we approach the world. We are born to emit God.
"Let your light so shine before men that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in Heaven." THAT'S the meaning of life. :)