Much of life and the pressures around us are designed to make us unhappy with who we are. However successful we may be by the conventional measures of the world, there is always the underlying sense that we are not quite up to the mark and so we are always meant to be striving to be like someone else: someone younger, more attractive, more popular, more successful.
This doesn’t change when we become a Christian. Much of the teaching we hear is intended to spur us on to be more like Jesus and, therefore by implication, less like ourselves.
Indeed there is much teaching on saying ‘no’ to our sinful nature and ‘yes’ to the Spirit of God inside us and all this is good. Paul makes this clear in Philippians 3 that our journey should be one of striving towards Christlikeness.
Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already been made perfect, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me.
Brothers, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining towards what is ahead,
I press on towards the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenwards in Christ Jesus. (Phil 3: 12-14)
However, with all that we are taught about striving towards a goal of spiritual maturity, we must not lose sight of our uniqueness as human beings. It is good to know someone who is mature in the faith who can be an example to us, but God has not given their personality to us, nor does He expect us to try to be exactly like them. He has made us unique with something special to offer those around us. This is particularly highlighted in Psalm 139
You created my inmost being. You knit me together in my mother’s womb.
I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.
My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place. When I was woven together in the depths of the earth, your eyes saw my unformed body. All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be. (Ps 139: 13-16)
God has made you to be you with all your originality and unique characteristics. If he had wanted clones he would have made us all that way. Don’t dishonour God’s creation by trying to be like someone else.
“It’s ok to be me”