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the story of Awk, Ward May 15, 2010

Posted by worshipconvergence in Christianity, Church, devotional, ministry.
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Picture this:

A teenager, lets call him Ward, walks into high school wearing snakeskin cowboy boots, khaki pants, a long sleeve shirt under a short sleeve shirt portraying an image of a smiley face that’s been shot in the forehead, and to top it all off – a black beret.

Ward walks past the star quarterback, his inspiration for wearing the boots. The quarterback lived on a cattle farm for 14 years and those boots are a part of his life and an extension of his personality. His friends scoff and laugh at Ward as he passes, and call him a dork…

Having anticipated their arrival, Ward then walks up to the new french foreign exchange students and attempts to greet them in their own language, which he executes imperfectly, and in combination with the out of place beret adorning his head earns himself a thinly veiled, judgmental, yet somehow polite “thank you,” followed by tons of ridicule behind his back… or so they thought…

Ward shyly looks toward his goth/emo classmates, and in turn, they return his gaze and add a chorus of “stay away, Poser.”

Finally he approaches his ‘own kind,’ and after a few minutes someone says to him, “Hey Mr. Fancy Pants, what’s with the khakis?” Ward responds, “I wanted to impress Alli.” His friends laugh and one says, “Miss Alexandra T. Gethers will never be into you!” Ward desperately answers, “But she dated you for three years! Why am I any different?” His friend tells him that he tries too hard and never shows anyone who he really is. “Look at yourself today Awkie, none of this is who you are. On the weekends you wear button-down shirts – untucked and with the sleeves rolled up, jeans, and tennis shoes. And if you wear a hat its a backward baseball cap!” Ward Awk looks down at his clothes in frustration, “I thought I was becoming what would make people want to be around me! The quarterback commands attention. The exchange students should be more comfortable around similarly dressed people in this new environment. The goth kids seem to crave acknowledgment. And Alli and her friends should respond positively to my perfectly pressed, expensive pants like her current boyfriend wears. I took my cue from their style.

After a few weeks of dressing as he normally does, Ward’s personality starts to shine, and while he isn’t the most popular kid in school, he has the respect of those he tried to imitate, as well as the rest of the school.

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We mistakenly call it the “human race.” The truth is its not a race, and trying to pace anyone but yourself is going to compromise who you really are. This is not the human race, it is the human process, and you are where you are in the process for a specific reason. Trying to be where someone else is in the process will only lead to frustration, burnout, and ultimately a loss of identity. We make it more complicated than it has to be. Don’t try for popularity, don’t try to hide, just be who God created you to be.

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