If I were to peel back the layers of my heart, I’m convinced I would see an etching along my aorta that says: here lives Aliza Latta, the girl who longs to be chosen.
I feel like Meredith Grey talking to Derek Shepherd in season two of Grey’s Anatomy. “Pick me. Choose me. Love me.”
I tried out for the musical Les Misérables in high school. To say Les Mis is my favorite musical in the entire world would be an understatement. I have the three-hour musical memorized and saw the movie in theatres seven times within the first two weeks. This summer in England I saw it onstage twice. I’m very proud of this.
When my teacher announced we would be performing Les Mis for the school play, I knew my time had come. I was born to be Eponine. Or Cosette. Or Fantine. Really, any role that had a solo was fine with me.
After the auditions, I checked the cast list on my computer. I blinked. I refreshed the page and scrolled down again. I couldn’t find my name. Where was my name? I scrolled further and finally saw it — listed beside the ensemble.
I felt like someone had dumped cold water on my head. I hadn’t been picked. They didn’t want me.
I cried myself to sleep. I didn’t go to school for a week. I dyed my hair from blonde to brown like one does after a bad breakup. (I swear I’m not dramatic at all . . . )
I am convinced our deepest desires all look the same — the desires to be known, to belong, to be chosen. It all comes down to one fundamental need: each of us wants to be loved exactly as she is. We want someone to cup their hands around our face, look deep into our eyes, and say, “I see you. I choose you. I pick you. I love you.”
We use musical auditions and boyfriends and alcohol and Instagram and pornography to make us feel known and loved and wanted. But we always come up empty.
Timothy Keller says, “To be loved but not known is comforting but superficial. To be known and not loved is our greatest fear. But to be fully known and truly loved is, well, a lot like being loved by God. It is what we need more than anything. It liberates us from pretense, humbles us out of our self-righteousness, and fortifies us for any difficulty life can throw at us.”
The truth is, humans will consistently let us down. I am disappointed by people almost every day. I place high expectations on them — I want them to make me whole.
But God chose you the moment He formed you. He sculpted your hair, your eyelashes, your fingertips. He looked at you and immediately delighted in you. He made you blameless as blood dripped from His hands and feet and brow, seeping down the wood of the cross. He makes you holy with each new day.
Someone once told me that God’s delight in us is like He’s doing a victory dance — spinning around, shaking his hips, whooping loudly, hollering, “I am so proud of you! Look at how far you’ve come! Look at what you’ve done, amazing daughter of mine.”
He sees your progress — no matter how small it may feel to you. He sees the exact season you are in, and He is proud of where you are. He’s not waiting for you to cross some finish line, exhausted. God sees you now, and He delights in this exact moment you are in. Rest in His delight. Rest in the immeasurable rhythm of grace.
I wonder what our lives would look like if we lived loved . . .
I want to live like I am known, because I am known.
I want to live like I am chosen, because I am chosen.
I want to live like I’m free, because I am free.
I’ll be rejected again — probably not by any more musical theatre auditions, mind you, but by men and literary agents and interviews — and I’ll feel inadequate and unloved and unwanted. But my feelings don’t dictate my truth.
The truth lies in 1 Peter 2:9, “ . . . for you are a chosen people. You are royal priests, a holy nation, God’s very own possession. As a result, you can show others the goodness of God, for He called you out of the darkness into His wonderful light.”
Go on, girl. Go live like the woman God has chosen. He made you holy, blameless, and free.
Lean in closer, and hear me: because of the unshakeable kingdom of God, you are a force unseen.
How can you live today with the confidence that God
delights in you exactly as you are?
Go live like the woman God has chosen. He made you holy, blameless, and free. - @alizalatta: Click To Tweet