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Everybody Loves ____

The Dark Side of Popularity

It's like Everybody Loves Raymond, ya know, that show from the 1990s/2000s? Except it's "Everybody Loves _______ [insert family member's/friend's name]".

Everyone loves "said person" because "said person" is successful at basically everything.

  • "Said person" dominates at sports.
  • "Said person" is an amazing cook.
  • "Said person" is excellent at home renovations and other handy projects.
  • "Said person" is musically inclined and can play multiple music instruments.
  • "Said person" is responsible and hard-working.
  • "Said person" excels in their hobbies.
  • "Said person" has awesome hair.
  • "Said person" has an adorable personality.
  • "Said person" is physically strong.
  • "Said person" is emotionally strong.
  • "Said person" is spiritually strong.

Etc.

Etc.

Etc.

Basically, what's not to love about "said person"?!

  • Everyone wants "said person" on their team when playing sports.
  • Everyone raves about "said person's" cooking.
  • Everyone is in awe over "said person's" building skills.
  • Everyone loses their blessed mind over "said person's" musical talent.
  • Everyone seeks the assistance from "said person."
  • Everyone asks for cool ideas from "said person."
  • Everyone compliments the hair of "said person."

  • Everyone admires and is amused by the personality of "said person."

  • Everyone calls "said person": "tough" or a "beast."
  • Everyone seems to think "said person" has their emotions under control.
  • Everyone seems to think "said person" doesn't struggle spiritually.

Etc.

Etc.

Etc.

And in many ways, everyone is correct! "Said person" is pretty amazing and epic and wonderful and tough and wise!!

Off-and-on over the past few years, I have struggled with how I relate to "said person." Often I would compete in the mental gymnastics of "The Comparison Game," and when I failed so miserably at "matching up," then jealousy took over.

Side note: Jealousy ain't a pretty thing! It has caused at lot of division, bitterness and discontent, not to mention a lot of unnecessary heartache. My relationship with "said person" could easily be in tatters right now, if it weren't for the graciousness of the Maker and how "said person" has stuck with me despite my failures!

But recently, more than that, I have been struck with sadness thinking about how so much of what nearly everyone values in "said person" is pretty superficial.

So little of what everyone values in "said person" goes deeper, beyond to what truly matters.

That's not in the least to say that "said person" is shallow.

"Said person" is an extremely deep, spiritual and loving person.

But sometimes I wonder if the way [nearly] everyone perceives "said person" is part of why "said person"‚until very recently—has been virtually unable to form any meaningful and lasting friendships.

Instead, almost everyone views "said person" as a commodity. Something to be used or someone of which to take advantage.

Or a trophy. Something to admire—at a safe distance.

And that makes me very sad indeed.

I have been blessed beyond belief to peer much more closely inside this lovely "said person."

There is a strong love there. A strong love for the Maker and for others.

There is joy there. Not only in serving the Maker but also in serving others.

There is peace there. Not only with the Maker, but with others.

But there is also sometimes heartache.

And sometimes fear. And sometimes doubt. And sometimes apathy. Sometimes anger. Sometimes discouragement.

"Said person" is by no means perfect, but is by many means someone to appreciate and with whom to forge a meaningful relationship. Maybe if "everyone" tried that, they would finally see the true value of "said person."

Not a commodity.

Not a trophy.

But a soul. And a scarred soul at that, being beautifully fashioned by the Maker's hands.

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