It is Saturday, January 9 as I write this post. This morning as I opened our home-delivered copy of the Los Angeles Times, there it was on the front page:
“There’s only one of him”
The statement was referring to Tommy Lasorda who just passed away at the age of 93. He was the legendary manager of the Los Angeles Dodgers. You can read everything about him on Wikipedia if you like.
Now I’m not a big baseball fan. Honestly, for me personally, watching baseball is like watching paint dry. In many games nothing starts to happen until the 7th inning anyway. I Prefer football or basketball to baseball any day of the week. Now if I’ve offended you because you love the “American pastime;” sorry about that—just sharing my humble opinion, which BTW is the only kind of opinions I have—humble ones.
Now, back to the headline. As I saw this headline, the first thought that came to my mind was, and there is only one of YOU—only one of ME!
“The more you are like yourself, the less you are like anybody else and that’s what makes you unique.” Walt Disney
“The statisticians figure that about 70 billion people have been born so far. And as I said, there’s no telling how many more there will be, but it looks like a lot. And yet—here comes the statistic of statistics—with all the possibilities for variation among the sex cells produced by each person’s parents, it seems quite certain that each one of the billions of human beings who has ever existed has been distinctly different from every other human being, and that this will continue for the indefinite future.
“In other words, if you were to line up on one side of the earth every human being who ever lived or ever will live, and you took a good look at the whole motley crowd, you wouldn’t find anybody exactly like you.”
“All I Really Need to Know I Learned In Kindergarten”
The wonderful and encouraging fact is that there is only one of you and one of me. We are each unique. That’s why it’s an affront to God to be unhappy with who he has made you or me to be and to try to be like somebody else. If he had wanted you to be somebody else he would have made you somebody else, but he didn’t. My daughter Anna once saw a bumper sticker that said, “Be yourself, everyone else is taken.” Gotta love it!
It’s biblically true that when God made you, he broke the mold and never made another person exactly like you. No one has the same DNA that you have. No one has the same finger prints that you have. No one has the same voice print that you have. Even identical twins are not 100% identical. You are wonderfully made—Psalm 139:14.
There is great joy and deep satisfaction in being content with who you are and liking who you are. It’s been a life-long process for me as a Christian to truly and deeply believe that there is only one of me and that God intentionally designed it that way. If I am not me, then who’s going to be me?
Here are a few passages in The Message paraphrase which have been especially helpful to me in being okay with who He has made me to be and not comparing myself with somebody else or wanting to be somebody else.
“Do you want to stand out? Then step down. Be a servant. If you puff yourself up, you’ll get the wind knocked out of you, but if you’re content to simply be yourself, your life will count for plenty” ~ Matthew 23:11,12
“But if you’re content to be simply yourself, you will become more than yourself.” ~ Luke 14:11
“Isn’t everything you have and everything you are sheer gifts from God? So what’s the point of all this comparing and competing?” ~ 1st Corinthians 4:7
“Let’s just go ahead and be what we were made to be, without enviously or pridefully comparing ourselves with each other, or trying to be something we aren’t”~ Romans 12:4,5
“Make a careful exploration of who you are and the work you have been given, and then sink yourself into that. Don’t be impressed with yourself. Don’t compare yourself with others. Each of you must take responsibility for doing the creative best you can with your own life.” ~Galatians 6:4,5
So yes, there was only one Tommy Lasorda, and there is only one YOU. He loves YOU and wants to use YOU for his purposes and for your joy.