Wednesday, October 24, 2012

I'm Changing My List

Too small.

Not strong enough.

Too different.

Can't do (fill in the blank).

Not good enough.



Made incorrectly.

This list used to define me. I wrote this list myself, and it was all that I saw when I looked in the mirror.

It takes about 3 seconds of looking at me to recognize that I am a little different. I don't measure up to my peers (pun intended), and it's quite obvious. I am the shortest person that most people know. It's forever been my status, my label. My insecurity about my lack of height was more than just about my physical appearance; it was also about the pain, the jokes, and the stares that come along with being 4'8". I have caused many a person to do a double-take, stop and whisper. I've been an easy target for jokes. Add in the fact that I'm a people-pleaser, and being "different" was just too much for me some days. I just wanted to look like everyone else.
Growing up I had many moments of asking God "why." I spent a lot of emotional energy wishing that God had made me differently, and taking offense from other's words and actions. I was blind to the good stuff that came along with being my height. I robbed myself (and other people) by wallowing in hurt and misunderstanding.

I can't totally pinpoint when my heart changed, but somewhere in my late teens I began to embrace my uniqueness. I began to accept what made me different. I started to believe what my family, friends, and the Lord said about me. And though I still have my insecurities from time to time, I can say that today I'm pretty happy about my lack of height. The Lord has helped me to understand that He didn't forget a few inches when He made me; He knew exactly what He was doing.

It wasn't a quick road, but I've begun a new list. I still have bad days, and I still take offense from time to time. But my questions have changed from "why" to "how?" How can God use me? How can He take this root of my insecurities and glorify Himself? How can my 4'8" stature bless others?

Here's the beginnings of my new list:

Others consider me to be approachable

I can understand what it's like to feel "different"

I'm easy recognizable

Kids clothes are way cheaper

My husband feels extra tall and manly when he stands next to me

I get to reflect a different aspect of God's creativity

My weakness is a chance for God to display His strength

Let's embrace what makes us different. Let's not ask why, but how. How can God grow my character through this? How can God use this aspect of my life? How can my unique reflection of God's creativity give glory to Him and be a blessing to others?

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  1. I love this post. I think we all struggle in an area of our appearance, and we just have to come to the point where we accept that that is how God made us. :) I've also been the target of "short" jokes (I'm 5'0"). I'm the oldest of 7 kids, and everyone is taller than me, except for my 10-year-old sister. If someone makes a joke about my height, I just reply back something about being "fun size". ;) I think what bothers me now is people that find it necessary to comment on my weight. You would never walk up to a heavier person and say "Wow! You've gained a lot!", so why do people think it's okay to loudly exclaim "Wow! You've lost a LOT of weight!"? Makes me feel like I was as big as a house, even though I wasn't. Anyway, this isn't about me, I just wanted to say that I understand where you are coming from, and I hope that people might think about their words before they say them. :)

  2. I love this! I too am on the short side and was teased all throughout my life (still am a little). But it's amazing to know that God gave us our height for His glory. :)

  3. Dear Mackenzie,
    I identify with this post, although I am a little taller 5' 2". I am clearly still on the journey towards acceptance of my height. I look up and wish there was another 4". I am creative at reaching things. Tongs have been very helpful in my new 14' tall apartment. Especially helpful in the kitchen. I will be thinking about "how" I can be a blessing too. :o) Thanks! Esther Norine Designs

  4. Dear Mackenzie,

    This post is so encouraging! I'm still in my late teens and I still struggle with many of the points from your first list. I remember moments (not so long ago) of almost begging God for a few more inches.
    I'm 151cm (I'm from Germany, if my calculation is correct, 1.51m are about 4'9'')and I hope that one day I'll also have a "new list" and that I'll learn how God can use me, despite my stature.
    Thank you so much for this post and your blog in general!! It's so encouraging to see how strong a short person like you (and me :)) can be if God strengthens you.

    P.S.: I'm not that good at writing English texts, but I wanted to share this with you anyway.Sorry for that :)

  5. Girl you are absolutely beautiful no matter what size. You can tell just by photos that your husband thinks you're the best thing he's ever seen, so what else matters? You rock!! I am so happy you are seeing the bright side of things now!

  6. YES!

    You are unique and beautiful and designed with a purpose. I love how you're changing your perspective and it has inspired me to go make a list of where I feel inadequate or insecure and look at how God uses those things.

    Thank you Mackenzie for being such a godly example!

  7. "Let's embrace what makes us different. Let's not ask why, but how. How can God grow my character through this? How can God use this aspect of my life? How can my unique reflection of God's creativity give glory to Him and be a blessing to others?" --- Love that!

    You are so beautiful girl. inside and out. And I just loved getting to know your heart even more while rooming with you at Influence.

    You are such an encouragement to me, girl!

  8. I have a cousin who is about that height and I personally was always the shortest person in my class until high school. So, I understand how being short can make one a bit insecure. But, it sounds like you're doing what you ought to do by praising the Lord for how He has created you. You are a beautiful girl!

  9. What a beautiful, sweet little lady of God you are.
    I'm a few years younger than you and in a different season of life, but I am always encouraged by your blog. Thank you for being faithful to the ministry you have through your blog. I see you as role model and the type of woman, wife, and mother I hope to become one day.

  10. I LOVE your heart Mackenzie...and lets face it, your heart must take up more room than everyone else. (Maybe not scientifically accurate) but I'm going with that truth anyway as you truly are beautiful inside and out. Especially from what I saw at the conference. And the things you write here on your blog are truly beautiful =)

    Thanks for sharing such brutally honest words girl! I look forward to getting to know you better =)

    Much Love,

  11. I'm planning on writing down my list, and then re-writing it! Thanks for the encouragement.

  12. It's great when we can turn our insecurities into something positive. I grew up absolutely hating my self and my appearance, now such a big part of my life is making others feel great about themselves as I've learnt to do (on most days) because not loving yourself is such a hard thing to live with. Good luck x

  13. you're beautiful, mackenzie. thank you for sharing this. i'm not 4'8'', but i've experienced very similar feelings. great reframe :)

  14. I love this! You have such a sweet heart and I love that you have shared your insecurities and your strengths - You are a sweet sweet soul

  15. You are precious dear friend, just precious. Thank you for linking up!


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