Month 3:02, Week 1:1 (Rishon/Pesach), Year:Day 5936:061 AM|
Gregorian Calendar: Tuesday 22 May 2012
The Journey to Shalom and Adulthood
As a father who has has had 6 teenagers with another not far behind, and having been one myself (obviously), you come to hear the question "Who am I?" phased in different ways by teens struggling to find their own identity. They may not ask the question outright but they may be displaying symptoms of the question without really knowing what's going on. And this doesn't just apply to teenagers - it applies to adults who may be emotional late-starters.
"The wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, willing to yield, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality and without hypocrisy. Now the fruit of righteousness is sown in shalom (peace) by those who make shalom (peace)" (James 3:17-18, NKJV).
So how can I know the symptoms of growing up? What will I be going through to indicate that a maturation process is underway?
1. Insecurity. When you're insecure, you're pulled in two directions. You don't want to be a child but at the same time you're scared to be an adult. You aren't sure of yourself at all. You get shy - sometimes you're afraid to ward off feelings of inferiority, and sometimes you disguise them with a superior manner that makes you a pain in the neck. But it always happens during maturation. If you're having this experience you actually need time to get on your feet and to find out who you are. And until then, you'll have a few painful falls, and get hurt where it really hurts - inside. The good news is that Yahweh knows who you are.
2. Restlessness. When you're restless you can't seem to settle down. You're impatient with yourself and with others and sometimes you don't even know why! This is a symptom of immaturity. You don't quite know where you're going or what you want when you get there. The good news is: you're on your way!
3. Inconsistency. You're up one day and down the next. Your emotions whirl like a merry-go-round. Your mouth won't behave itself. You make great resolutions today and break them all tomorrow. You are close friends with someone this day and complete strangers with them the next. One minute you're laughing and the next you're in tears. If anyone tries to keep you on the track you even get a little resentful. You think it should be easy for your friends and parents to understand. But is it? And do they? "You don't understand me!" is a common retort of the one growing up because they don't really yet understand themselves.
4. Indecision. A lot of times you simply can't make up your mind about anything. You bounce back and forth like a yoyo - do I keep hidden or do I reveal all? Either way, no adult or person in authority can tell you what to do!
If you're experiencing these four symptoms, know it's a part of growing up. Things will settle down once you have had the needs of security, a sense of belonging somewhere, a knowkedge of the emet (truth), made some successful accomplishments, got free of fear and guilt and have experienced the deepest ahavah (love) fulfilled in some way.
When young or old in body, know that there are processes involved in growing up and don't be afraid of them. Rather, adhere to the emet (truth) of Yahweh, cling to Him while things settle down and balance comes to your life, by continually yielding all the unruly thoughts and feelings to Him and trusting Him to order things the way that is pleasing to Him!