The needy soul.

I want to please you. I want to please the fuck out of you.

I want to give you everything you want and be everything you want me to be.

I want the sheer essence of who I am to seep into the depths of your very being. I want to startle your soul into a place of deep enamor. Write poems about me. Photograph me. Craft music with me as the main theme. Show me I’m important. Show me I can move you; be a muse to you, make you think; I want songs preformed about the way I move. The way I speak. The lovely way my lips move and the way my hair falls.

I want a single glance to captivate you.

Call me beautiful. Call me gorgeous. Call me perfect. Call me all the beautiful adjectives you can find in a dictionary and then try other languages.

I’ll make it worth your effort. I want to please you. I want to do all the things you want me to do. I want something as quiet and light as my morning routine to draw out simple, inspired attraction. I want my particular musical tastes to grip you and make you wonder about me, all about me, and love me, love me. Breathe for me. I want my unplanned words to sound like poetry, poetry that you recite under your breath when you need to feel inspired to create something. Let me be your muse. Your role model, even. Your best friend. Your fantasy. Your object of envy.

I want my hobbies to cause you to be interested in me, my style to enchant you, my journaling, drawings, baking to make you smile. Because of me. Because I am special and worth something. I want my body to be your ideal and I want you to compliment me. I want my physique to inspire. Inspire jealousy. Inspire lust. Because I mean something. I matter. I’m good enough. I’m important. I’m sexy. I’m beautiful.

Right?

Approval. I need it. Tell me I’m beautiful. Tell me I matter. Use the most sophisticated words you can conjure. Use adjectives that I’ve never even heard. Forge balladry. Dream up beautiful lymericks, sonnets and quatrains. All about me. 

Then I will know I matter. In fact, I think I will die if you don’t follow through. I want this all so much. So I will be anything you want me to be. I will change for you. If my body is not what you desire, then I shall change it. If you do not like my hair, then my hair will be cut, grown or dyed. If my activities seem sub-par, then they will certainly change. If my speech does not spark fascination, then I will learn new words and mannerisms.

Please tell me you love me and tell me I matter. I will be whoever you want me to be.

I’ll be whoever you want me to be.

I’ll be whoever anyone wants me to be.

All I ask in return is your love and acceptance.

I have become a pish-posh of unrecognizable pieces of flesh and fashion – interest and activity – personality and practices – soul and game. I know not who I am anymore. And I am still unsure if anyone really loves me for me.

I can’t think about this too much because it freaks me out – because those who do love me do not truly love me, but love what I have created. My mismatched demeanor. My cut-to-pieces soul. I have sparked ruthless jealousy in some, as I have been ruthlessly jealous of others. I have slowly and skillfully adopted shaped myself into what I have believed would make me the most wanted. Given me the most adoration, attention, respect, approval.

And now I am not myself and I am not loved for myself.

Probably all the love in the world could not fill the ravenous hole in my heart that begs for evermore attention and praise. And the people’s praises that do seem to momentarily fill are so shaky, changing their affections based on the culture and age and personality.

I am left shaken, broken, older than I should be and unlike who I really am. I am too far away from reality to know who I really am. My heart cries out for love in a vacuum. I operate out of the same old mantra: “please let me please you, and accept my desperate attempts with praise.”

I am empty. And alone. With no ballads or photographs that even begin to touch the true longing of my soul.

I cry, scream, distraught – exhausted – from extracting everything I possibly could from every other option I could have sought after with my needy heart.

Already feeling the guilt and shame of the knowledge of what I should have done all along, I cry out, “I’ve tried everything now! I’m done! I need perfect love!”

He answers in grace.

He binds up my wounds.

He tells me I’m loved.

This is the answer.

But I’ll do it again.

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A Recent Conversation With God about Being Uncool

Dear Lord.

Please make me cool, Lord. It’s hard bein down here not knowing how to be cool. I beg and plead with you every year to take away my social anxiety, and You don’t. I feel like it’s my… weakness, like Paul’s, you know? The one You gave him to keep him humble? Whatever he had, I’d trade him. Being uncool and awkward is the worst.

I’ve tried for so long to look cool and act cool. I grew out my hair, dye it sometimes, and wear clothes from Salvation Army. I think I have a pretty good Instagram. I write in trendy cursive letters in my journal and notecards. I even know about cool alternative Christian bands, like Rivers & Robots (in fact, I think I knew about them before a lot of people!). I listen to secular bands, too! Like Radiohead! And Led Zeppelin!

I’ve tried to throw parties, eat at lesser known restaurants (even though I like the chain ones… how I’ve sacrificed!) and take a lot of pictures with my friends. I go to Ann Arbor regularly and drink alcohol, bar hop, and smoke a cigarette here and there! In fact, I used to smoke weed everyday. I did shrooms once, even? My past is edgy and unique and I have a cool salvation story. I’m skinny, fit and have long hair. I’m well-read in C.S. Lewis and Harry Potter. (Is Harry Potter cool? I still can’t figure it out.) I don’t understand why they don’t like me. I’m hip!! Help!

I mean, okay, I’ll admit I’ve made a few mistakes along the way. I probably like Pokemon a little too much for it to be cute and quirky. I started a club about it at Bible School because I’ve been obsessed since I was eight. You know I love anime and cartoons and you saw me set my cover photo on Facebook as a scene from Steven Universe… Why didn’t You stop me? I might occasionally watch Anime Music Videos (I don’t publically announce that one, at least… I’d die if anyone found out) (I even used to make them.) (Do you like anime, God?)  I think participating in a Magic: The Gathering tournament might have been a big slip-up for me. As was dressing up as Misty two years in a row for Halloween. I don’t mind wearing shirts with stains on them. I get really over-excited when someone orders pizza. I like chain restaurants. I listen to classic rock, which I think might be kind of cool, but I’m not sure.

But God, I feel like a lot of really cool people get away with this stuff. I’ve known cool people who like Pokemon and watch cartoons. And like pizza. I’m starting to feel like cool is a natural gifting – something you’re just born with. Which honestly, God, I’m pretty pissed off about. UNfair. I’m not the most attractive, I know, or the most socially… elegant… but does that mean I’m destined to be completely excluded? Never taste the fine wine of acceptance from the elite of society? Never be loved the way they are? Looked up to the way they are? Wanted the way they are?

I know I’m not at the bottom of the totem pole so maybe I shouldn’t be complaining. But Lord, I’m getting pretty sick and tired of thinking that I might finally have a relationship with one of these cool and elite Christians, be in their cool pictures and be invited to their parties, and then I’m not. What gives? Pls make me cool, and likable. Thank you. Because I cannot honestly handle another day of being excluded from their groups! Like, what is wrong with me?

Please change me Lord. I hate who I am. I hate being on the outside. I hate getting 12 likes on my instagram pictures while the cool girls get a thousand. I hate walking around awkward and rejected by them. I hate my social anxiety. I hate that my jokes aren’t funny enough. I hate being excluded. I just want to be loved, Lord. Accepted. Looked up to by the world around me. I’d probably be more relevant for You, then, right? If I could be cool?.. That’s a good reason for you to do this for me. I really think You should. Because the way You made me really sucks.

Sincerely,

Average

Dear Beloved Child,

I am sorry that this world has rejected you. I feel your pain. I know the struggle. Please remember when I sent my Son onto the earth, there was nothing about Him that attracted any human. He was normal – average – and perfect. Please know that to be like Jesus does not mean to be the popular and elite of society.

Listen to me. You need to know that I have created you beautiful. It hurts my heart hearing that you do not love yourself. I love you infinitely. Immensely. I would part seas for you. Split the earth. Come down from the clouds of Heaven to rescue you from all this. I want to save you from this world. And I will. But you’re there for a reason now.

You are unique. No one on earth can do what you do. I am sorry that this so called “cool” group of people has rejected you. They are no better or worse than you, only different. In the world system that Satan has created – and make no mistake that he has created it, and it has infiltrated my beloved Church, the bride of Christ – there are the beautiful and the rejects, the loved and the unloved, the cool and the uncool. Trust me that I am aware of this and I have felt your pain. I have felt millions of my children cry out in pain because of their exclusion. I am not flippant concerning this. My heart breaks over the exclusiveness of members of my Church.

I wish all who call themselves Christians would heed my words. I chose things despised by the world – things counted as nothing at all – and used them to bring to nothing what the world considers important. The Holy Spirit has devoted an entire chapter in the book of James to the sin of partiality – to not view people as lesser or higher based on worldly requirements! How, knowing this, do my children judge and exclude one another based on what the world considers important? Awkwardness? Not wearing acceptable clothes? Listening to off-putting music? Not being what Satan has deemed most desirable, whether by attractiveness or personality, or likes and dislikes?

No! Pure foolishness! This is not the way I think at all! No, daughter, do not let yourself be defined by this world. Do not let anyone tell you that you are less because you are different. This is a lie from the pit of hell itself. You are chosen for a special purpose that only you can fulfill. You have much to offer that I desire everyone to see. Unfortunately, sin has cursed this world and divisions are a result. Your task is to be inclusive, and to love everyone, despite their wealth or poverty, attractiveness or lowliness, intellect or lack thereof. All of these things make no difference to me – I show no partiality – and in fact, I often seek after those who are poor and helpless – not often those who the world considers the best and most beautiful; most desirable.

With pain in my heart I must rebuke you as well. I do feel and understand your pain but I see you putting certain people on a pedestal where they do not belong – this is wrong. This is why you feel so needy to be accepted in these groups. You are changing yourself to be included. No, child. Be secure in me. Be secure in the person I have made you, even if everyone in this world tells you that you are unlovely and weird. Through My eyes you can see the good things about yourself – but not without Me. Do not let go.

You are beautiful, daughter. Love those who ignore and reject you and do not reject anyone. Listen to the music you love and cultivate the talents with which I have blessed you individually. Find your identity in me and in my love for you. I love and pursue all my children equally, including the ones who reject you. Find it in your heart to love them, through my Son. Only love will bring you freedom to be who you truly are. Being authentic will bring you closest to Me. Being closest to Me will make you most effective. Identify with me. Care about what I think of you. I care about you so deeply it hurts. I adore you. I love your quirks and your spirit and the way I have made you special. Do not let that go to waste. I love you. I love you. I love you.

Love,

Daddy