“Two become one.”
“You’re just like her or him.”
One of the most incredible aspects of connection is when we share common personality traits or passions with another soul. We celebrate it. It’s good. But something inside can also fight against being told we are “just like her or him” because it sounds as if we are no longer our whole selves, but a reflection of another. Herein lies the balance of celebrating our individualism while also noticing that weird pull toward social acceptance.
Until recently, I held a skewed view about Ephesians’ “two becoming one” intent. I mean it was our marriage verse, people. We printed it on our programs. I know what Jesus was saying, but somewhere the message got blurry, and I believed that a thriving marriage means you literally become like the same person.
Growing up I was compared to friends. I was compared to my mom. “You’re just like her,” people said. Compliments? Yes. While we shared common traits and mannerisms, we are, in fact, individuals. And that’s great. But I often felt like I had to morph into “her” to be accepted.
Society celebrates creative people, those who are fashion-forward, and up-to-date with the latest trends.
Do you find yourself confused at striving to be your own version of you, while also enjoying who the “acceptable” person is?
There’s gotta be a balance, right?
Marriage isn’t about melting into being one and the same, but about bringing our fully imperfect selves to the table and doing life together. Single, individual selves who share, shine, compromise, offering our created beings alongside another human. So much of what I perceived a rockstar marriage should emulate was to be interwoven and enmeshed so that it’s hard to decipher where one person begins and the other ends. Freedom though, when last week, I realized when I try to force our marriage to become one, I lose the heartbeat of our unique personalities, processes, and pains as a shared, not melted into experience. I’m thinking if I’m individually striving to follow the One, wholeness is achieved without trying or hoping for more .
Friendships and family often attract and influence similar personalities, and I want to encourage you with what I’m learning right.this.very.minute: Similar is beautiful. But different isn’t bad. It may be misunderstood or out-of-the-box, but that’s what makes it entirely appealing and unique.
What if we redefine different to mean “YOUness: the essence of what makes you YOU?” I’m convinced this would ease the tension of “how one do we need to be?” or “Yes, we are similar, but something inside gets lost in that.”
YOUness is the balance of individualism because it allows YOU to shine your YOUness while I shine mine, because we’re ALL on the SAME team and share the SAME Father.
Suddenly it’s not about balance but being.
As an incredibly whole individual.