“Labeling is definitive; once we say it then it holds meaning”
How many labels do we use in a day without conscious thought? We place labels on a person based on actions or behaviors of that person. We place labels based on a student’s disabilities. We also place labels on a person based on a medical diagnosis.
But how do labels impact others? Think for a moment about students in special education and their labels? Or how about the labels placed on people based solely on the way they look without knowing anything about them! Or how about the many people that have labels placed on them once they’ve been diagnosed with a disease?
Not all labels are bad, I know they have a purpose. For example, in education, a label is there to help the student receive helpful services that they would otherwise not receive without it.
But there is also another side to labels; a dangerous, negative side.
We are shaped by our thoughts; we become what we think. When the mind is pure, joy follows like a shadow that never leaves. ~Buddha
We will become what WE believe to be true about ourselves, with the help of course, of what others say about us!
When we label a person, we are only seeing “that label” and the label’s description about who we are, instead of seeing the TRUE ESSENSE of the person!
HOWEVER, YOU ARE NOT A LABEL!
YOU ARE NOT . . . a stereotype.
YOU ARE NOT . . . a color.
YOU ARE NOT . . . a size.
YOUR ARE NOT . . . your mistakes.
YOU ARE NOT . . . your diagnosis.
YOU ARE NOT . . . your disability.
YOU ARE NOT . . . your IQ.
In closing . . .
It is important to recognize that the people we label “black”, “white”, “nerd”, “weak”, “rich”, “poor”, “sick”, “smart”, or “dumb” SEEM blacker, whiter, nerdier, weaker, richer, poorer, sicker, smarter or dumber merely because we’ve labeled them so!
“If you hand over your fears, I PROMISE I will take care of them!”
It’s what I heard in my dream last night. The voice was soft, yet firm. Gentle, but with conviction.
And so, this morning I awoke in search of WHO this message was intended for.
Perhaps it’s for me or one of my family members?
Or perhaps this message could conceivably be for YOU, the person reading this RIGHT NOW.
Either way I wanted to share these powerful words, that gave me hope for my future and courage for today. I pray it does the same for you!
“I sought the Lord, and he answered me; he delivered me from all my fears”
Growing up in Florida, I have experienced many powerful hurricanes. Depending on their category, these hurricanes can carry very strong winds, some as strong as 156 mph. Watching this kind of power can be very frightening, to say the least!
One thing I’ve always wondered is how palm trees withstand these big, angry storms? While pieces of houses and large trees are tossed around like toys, palm trees are able to survive! But what’s their secret?
PALM TREES ARE DESIGNED TO BEND! When the storms come, palm trees can bend quite a lot, EVEN to the point of being horizontal to the ground. BUT THEY DON’T BREAK!
During the storm, you might look at the palm tree flattened to the ground and think it’s a goner. But after the storm passes, the palm tree will be able to stand upright again. And when the storm is over, the palm tree comes back stronger and better than before the storm!
What a beautiful metaphor for how God made us! The storms of life are inevitable. Sometimes we won’t be able to explain why they are happening. Other times we won’t be able to see the purpose. But God made us like the palm tree, able to withstand even the most difficult storms.
He made us so that we may bend, but not break!
Whether you’re currently entering a storm, or passing through one, remember that when the storm is over, you will be able to stand upright again and come out of it stronger than ever before!