Sunday, September 19, 2010

Mirror, Mirror...

Mirror, mirror on the wall, who’s the fakest of them all?

Oh me?

Of them all? Really? Of all of them?

Me? Fine.

Do you ever question your motives? Question why you say something, why you do something? Question who you are verses how you want to be perceived?

Me too.

Here's the problem: This is how I want to be seen-

So, so shiny!

Then there is the real me-


Um, perhaps a little less shiny.

I want to be GIVING, but you know what else I want? Oh, take a seat people because this will take a few minutes.

I want a table right next to this desk so I don’t have to look at a random pile of papers scattered all over the floor, and I want a haircut, and I’m talking a real haircut, not a I-happen-to-be-at-a-major-discount-store-and-there-isn’t-a-line-so-I will-get-my-hair-cut hair cut. Oh, and yes, I want those sassy Skylair boots listed on p. 8 of the new Athleta catalogue with “cork infused rubber wedge outsole for comfort, leather insole, and partial side zip for easy on/off” but don’t even think about looking up the price of those babies because I’m pretty sure the cost is equivalent to what it would take to feed a small village for weeks. And the sad part? I could continue on for pages about my wants.

I feel fake.

Caught between who I am (gimme, gimme, gimme), and who I want to be (take it all!) hoping this whole GRACIOUS GIVING adventure isn’t for my glory.

What about you? Sum it up. What do people see when they look at you? How do you want to be perceived? Are you working to become something different?

doll photo by Charles Roark on


Susan DiMickele said...

Love this Amy -- and it just hit me at the right moment! You have a way of doing that.

kendal said...

So great to have "met" you. I think we have a lot in common. Decades of coveting have left me with a long long road to get to gracious giving. But I want it. Thanks for the reminder.

marlece said...

Another great post Amy...sometimes it's hard to break out of the 'I want mode' and get back to the basic fact 'it isn't all about me' or is this glorifying the One I serve?! Love this post!

Shane said...

First of all, I think you look beautiful as the "real" you, and that is the Amy I married.
At times, I have not fully supported or encouraged your journey toward living a gracious, God-centered life, but that has not slowed you down one bit. You are only responding to what God has truly laid on your heart and you are sharing it openly. You have challenged me on so many levels recently, and not allowed me to "settle" for mediocrity. Thank you!


Amy Sullivan said...

Susan and Marlece, Always good to hear from you!

Kendal, I'm excited to read more of your work, and it's fun we live close (sort of!) to each other. I've yet to see Boone or much out that way.

Shane, Shane, Shane- What are you doing here? Football is on! Love you, and we need to get those passports updated. I have a feeling we are heading somewhere this summer.

Jennifer @ Getting Down With Jesus said...


Work. In. Progress.


I'm so thankful that God takes us from glory to glory to glory ...

That He doesn't give up on us, midway through the refinishing.

That we are all really just rough first drafts.

And that He who began a good work in us will carry us on to completion.

lori said...

You are cracking me up with that picture! I love when you are self-deprecating and endearing! I like seeing Shane's presence back on the old blog. You can tell him his comments are very sweet, and I think those passports do need to be dusted off, so exciting!!!!

Sugar Mama said...

Cute picture! (the one of you... not Barbie)

I've worked really hard on being ME all of the time. It's hard. And it's not always pretty... but I go to bed knowing that, for the most part, I stayed true to me.

BUT... I could definitely work on my "wants" vs "needs". I have a long way to go for that.

Don't be hard on yourself... you're doing great and inspiring so many people!

alicia said...

Amy- thank you so much for stopping by my blog. You are a wonderful woman of God and I think I'm going to be hanging out here a lot more! :)

Ummm... now about that gracious living... work in progress... um yeah. That'd be me. Thanks for the great lesson today.

Rose said...

working on self. been away from blogs and comments busy with company and completing other things. Why? do we hit on ourselves when we think we aren't doing right or not up to parr? you as well as many don't nned to do this. as far as needs, it's ok to want but the issue is what happens when we get something or does it deprive from someonelse or hurt. this was a meaningful post. thanks

The Blogging Goddess said...

I love your space and I love how you write. I actually have a sorta kinda similar post to this coming up this week...sorta...kinda...

Dawn Smith (Bee and Rose) said...

Love this post:) I've been working on opening myself to the gifts of each day...(and if they happen to include a fabulous material item...then so be it!) I'm really trying to feel worthy of abundance:)

Also took time away from the blogs to just be with myself and really like who I am...still working on it, but getting better!

Rachel M. said...

I'm not sure it's entirely wrong to want to present oneself in the best light possible. I had dreams of returning from maternity leave with perfectly straightened hair, I'd find a hair stylist who specializes in the Keratin straightener, my teeth would be straightened from newly removed braces and I'd have a sleek new wardrobe to match. The only thing I managed was to have braces removed. Hey a girl can dream right! Meanwhile how many people look at my curls and envy them?

Sara said...

Definitely good questions to ponder. I'm leading a study on Rueben Job's Three Simple Rules which takes us back to John Wesley's 3 rules for Christian living: Do No Harm, Do Good, Stay in Love With God. I think this post, and gracious giving, ties in directly to that. Like most, I struggle with the "I wants" as opposed to the "others need", although I've found that God can be very convicting! Our new bed comforter set that I "wanted" turned into food for a child for a year! Go God!!

Kim said...

When people look at me they see a small, old, bald, freckled asian man. I want to be perceived as spiritually aware, empathetic, non-judgmental, caring, careful, joyful, peaceful, patient, kind and gentle. Becoming this sort of person is WORK! A constant self-denial. I write to remind myself of successes and failures. To journal the journey. Blessings on your quest! Kim

Rebecca Ramsey said...

I love that picture of you. LOVE IT!
I had the same thoughts yesterday. My husband taped a video of me talking for the My Story page of my blog, and I turned into Mrs. Mean Old Grouchy Pants at the first sight of it. That's not how I want to look. That's not how I want my voice to sound. I want to be skinny and younger and I want to look like I have lips.
But here I am anyway. Why can't I love my thin lips and my voice more? Why can't I be happier with me? :)

Big Fat Mama said...

I don't think it is our natural beings to want to give. Sure it feels great to give to someone, but naturally we are selfish and want things of our own desires.

I think the big reason to give is to build a stronger and deeper realtionship with God. When we give we are actually being like Christ, not ourselves. We are going against our own selfish beings and discovering what grace is all about...and then understanding more about Christ's grace. God does not actually need us to do anything. He has the power to change the world and each persons situation. So when we give to someone it's not as if we are doing anything that God himself couldn't do. We are building our character and being more like of the main reasons to give. :)

Very interesting posts Amy! And I loved seeing your childhood picture.:)
Big Fat Mama

Unpolished Parenting said...

Thanks for the follow & after reading this amazing post, I'm glad to follow back! I am constantly striving to be perfect... but barbie is fake, so maybe that means perfection is too. Here's to working on being okay with the real us... crazy hair and all :)

Home's Where My Heart Is said...

Hi Amy,

What a great post, very convicting. I see myself finally getting up the nerve to ask someone what they think of me but before they can get the words out I cover my ears and close my eyes. I'm afraid.

In August you visited my other site, The Whatever Girlz ( and left the nicest comment...and I am so embarrassed because it has taken me this long to say thank you. This ministry has taken longer to get off the ground than I planned, so I haven't even been checking the email linked with that blog. I am posting there now, though. So, I wanted to make sure to thank you for visiting and for your comment.

I need to really "soak" in the words of this post you've written so nicely. Thanks for the conviction :)


Slamdunk said...

I like the topic and message Amy. I think our family vehicle looked a lot like that old station wagon in the background.

I want to show confidence with good posture and calm mannerisms, but often the thoughts become jumbled as I try to share them verbally--it makes for an interesting life.

Jen said...

What I realize at this moment is that people see me as put-together, loyal, "she can do anything" type of girl. While this is nice and all, it means I get asked to do a lot and then feel so guilty if I say no. What I want to say is that I am broken -- that the reason I do all of these things, a lot of the time, is because for some reason, I still feel like I must prove myself. I must be the best. I must never give up.

What I want to be is discerning with my time. I want to give, just to give, with no other hidden agenda. I want to be immune to praise and criticism -- to not live or die by the words that come out of someone's mouth. I want to live as Jesus did and be satisfied with what God puts on my plate instead of heaping spoonfuls on there myself. I could write a whole blog post on this issue, I believe...

SuperMom Blues said...

I have nominated you for a Lovely Blog Award!

From Tracie said...

I am the same way...torn between my "am" and my "want to be"

Gracious Giving is so against everything that we see around us, it makes sense that it is a journey, and not a quick change. You will get will I!

Douglas Dahl said...

I heard someone say we become what we think other people think we are. That attitude can lead us into feeling a bit phoney if that truely isn't who we are...of course placing our identity with Christ is the solution...but the enemy would like to prevent that...God bless you are not alone in feeling this way at times.

samanthakrieger said...

Great post Amy. Definitely a constant battle between who I want to be in the spirit, and who I end up being in the flesh. But definitely worth the fight.
Thanks for all you are doing on your blog :)

Matt Parker said...


I love this post! I am constantly reminded that my motives are so often impure . . . and they so often creep up in the blogworld. When I make comments for people or write about things--only to direct attention to myself. And it's prideful and insincere. Thank you for the good reminder to be authentic and not care so much about appearances. Cuz God has always been after the heart, anyway.

BTW, I linked your site on my blogroll . . . so it will be easier for me and others to visit you!

And . . are you guys in Asheville? I went to school at Appalachian State in Boone, NC, and have a grandmother living in Asheville . . . .

love from here,


Karyn said...

I totally agree here Amy! I feel fake so much of the time, especially if someone points out something good about me - I think, "If only you knew what I was really thinking inside! You wouldn't be so quick to be saying what you are." I love reading your blog because it is always so challenging to me. Keep it up Amy!

Sharon said...

Popped over from Laura Parker's. Good post.

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