Who Are You?

When I introduce myself to a group, I usually say something along these lines, “I’m Tyler. I’m married. Mom to five kids. (Then I pause for a moment to allow anyone gasping to catch their breath.) I spent the past eight years as a stay-at-home mom, while also serving as leader of our church’s women’s ministry. I’m a (developing) writer and speaker for women’s groups. And recently I went back to work, where I found the job of a lifetime working for Break Forth Ministries as their Speaker/Artist Coordinator.”

It’s a nice, easy introduction. But it says a lot more about what I do than who I am.

Sure, I want to know the basic facts about you. But what I really want to know is who you are…what makes you tick…your story. (These are the details that build relationship.)

It’s been a while since I’ve actually shared who I am. I’m rusty. So I figure I’ll start here. You don’t mind, do you? But promise me something – promise me you’ll share a bit about who you are in the comments today.

I’m Tyler. That’s not my first name, but I’ve gone by my middle name since junior high. When I think of myself, I think “Tyler.” When I hear God speak to my heart, He usually calls me Tyler (or daughter).

I’m an emotional girl. Some people might call me too emotional. I cry easily. I hurt easily. I’m sensitive. But I’ve learned that my emotional side is a gift. I also love easily and deeply. I forgive quickly (some might say too quickly). Within minutes of meeting someone, I can probably tell you if he or she is hurting.

I’m bossy. It comes from being an only child for most of my growing-up years. I was the boss of all that I did. I like to be in charge, take control. This probably rubs a few people the wrong way. But my take-charge attitude really comes in handy in leadership situations.. I can lead a group toward consensus with relative ease, and if consensus isn’t reached, I feel comfortable and confident making a decision anyway. Things get done.

I love structure. Spontaneity scares me. No, it stresses me. I like to have a schedule, a list, and a plan. I’ve been referred to as anal and OCD numerous times. But all my planning means that I’m fully invested. If I’ve scheduled an appointment three months in advance, you can trust me to keep it. If I’ve laid out every kilometre of a vacation, you can count on me to have thought of everyone’s needs in planning. The last thing in the world I want to do is let someone down, so I lay out a plan.

It’s funny how each personality trait has both positive and negative qualities. I used to focus on the negative, and see these traits as character flaws. I’m too emotional, too bossy, too structured. But is there a such thing as being too loving, too decisive, too organized? And I learned that I can’t have one without the other. You can’t have a Loonie (that’s our Canadian dollar coin) without both the picture of the loon and the picture of the Queen. All I can do is work to emphasize the positive and minimize the negative.

So, there’s a little picture of who I am (not just what I do).

Tell me, who are you?

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* Pictures courtesy of cmfsx.com.




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Comments

  1. 1

    My name is Jeannie, we met at a wedding last summer.

    I am 31, a single mom with 7 year old twins. I also work a full time job as an Assistant Branch Manager of a local industrial parts supply company. I am impossibly busy which is only made possible by my relentless pace, good friends and family, and probably faith. I know there is a God, he has seen me through some horribly dark times, but our relationship is still in the works.

    I am vocal, passionate, loyal, and try to be generous. But I am also wary of outsiders and keep them at arms length until they prove themselves. Control freak by nature, I try to keep my life running smoothly by prep work, scheduling, and on rare occasion, a large stick.

    I follow your blog because it is personable, and not preachy. A real woman, with real woman with issues not unlike my own. It is nice to know that there are people like you in this world. It’s like a spring flower blooming out of a snow bank on a sunny spring day.

  2. 2

    I’m Kelly. I love God, love my family, and love my friends. But I never seem to have enough time for any of them. Probably because I am a procrastinator, easily distracted, and a bit lazy. I feel God calling me to a closer relationship with Him and the people in my life, but I would rather spend time on the couch with my “appointment TV”.
    However, dispite my shortcomings, I think I am a loving wife who tries to be an encourager and caregiver to my husband. I think I am a great mom who loves her kids, meets their needs, and makes them smile and ask for snuggle time. I think I am a genuine friend who really cares and wants to have fun and show love to those in her life. And I am a Jesus Girl, who is closer to God today than I was 1, 5, 10 years ago, and will continue to put aside the “stuff” little by little so I can be closer and closer to Him in the years to come.
    I know that my worth is not in what I can do or accomplish or boast in, but in the God who loves me the same when I fail as when I succeed.

  3. 3

    Howdy, my name is Louise, I’ve known you for 7 (!) years.

    Although it makes me uncomfortable to type, even four years later, I am a 31 year old single mom to four children. Like you, I go by my middle name. Although I have never gone by Elizabeth, my first name, I commonly hear God refer to me as it in prayer. While I also don’t like defining who I am by my job, I work full-time in a high-pressure environment as Marketing Coordinator for a large engineering and architectural firm. My life is commonly full of career crisis and a dis-satisfaction for my current situation. Hence the reason I am also in the process of seeing if I can pull off the necessary requirements to attend school and (finally) get the degree I have always dreamed of. I don’t even care that much about what I can do with it career-wise afterwards but desire the wisdom and fullfillment.

    I am spontaneous, despite endless lists sitting around my home in which I dream and plan things to fine detail, following them would physically hurt my heart. While I went through a time of running away from God in my life, this year has been one of finding myself deeper in Christ. I am also not very good at being quiet about it, in other words I am honest, and truly believe to the core of my being in transparency. Having lived a secret life of lies for a few years and walked out of that has taught and inspired me to never live there again. You’ll commonly hear me talk about stuff that shocks people. While I was inititally scared to be so bold, God is showing me the value and love that sits at His feet when I do. I love ‘living on the edge’ in order to truly see and bear blantant witness to how He provides daily bread.

    Did I tell you that I am also a dreamer? I believe in the impossible, am a hopeless yet single romantic, an encourager, am known to be creative or artsy-fartsy and like to fancy myself as kinda funny. Forgiveness comes easily, and love runs deeply. Sometimes my honesty and reckless faith can be seen as irresponsible and I am currently working on what that looks like through the wisdom of Christ and an upside down kingdom. I don’t do anything in trepitation, including a relationship with God. Either I am all the way in, selling all my belongings and flying around the world to follow in obedience or (as I once was, yet will never be again) all the way out. Christians who only follow half-way are my greatest pet-peeve… and greatest mission to inspire.

    I’ve been following your blog since before it officially existed and thank God repeatedly for bringing you into the path of my life on this earth. You’re incredibly wise, and a daily source of God’s blessing.

    While I joke a lot about not being mushy or huggy, I kinda am inside. I deeply love and care about you, Tyler.

  4. 4

    It is so much easier to write out what I am than who I am! I started this twice with “I am the mom of seven, a …” but realized that you probably know all that stuff about me already. I am a flawed, forgiven, work in progress, always seeking a closer relationship with God. I am very disorganized and unstructured, yet a planner who does not thrive in spontaneity. I love deeply, therefore, have been hurt deeply. I am making a very concerted effort to care less about what others think of me and that has freed me considerably from a lot of fears that used to define me. I still struggle with those fears and insecurities though. Tyler, I am glad to have met you and look forward to a continued and deepening friendship. I appreciate you blogging about “real” stuff and who you really are.

  5. 5

    Tyler-
    I wanted to introduce myself to you. I have been following your blog for awhile now. I enjoy it so much that I have added your link on my blog. I don’t blog often, but I wanted to let you know.
    My name is Ronnie. I am a single mom of two. I love the Lord with all that I am, even when I don’t understand His purpose or His plans. I love to be different, just enough to keep people on their toes. I work full time, I mom full time and I serve in different areas of my church the rest of the time. I truly enjoy working with my church youth group…they keep me young and I pray that they just desire more of Him! I am on the worship team and help with our youth band. Worship is the way I connect with God the best.
    I do not do well with writing out goals or schedules or menus. I can tell you what I have to do and don’t really like to plan beyond that. My house is not a clean, tidy place, but a comfortable lived in area. I try to keep up with things though I sometimes just put my feet up and ignore it all when life gets too busy. I like to think of myself as flexible and laid back. I enjoy girl time anytime I can, which isn’t always enough. I love my friends and consider myself to be loyal. I forgive easily but have learned that forgiveness does not mean that I have to continue to put myself in a position to be hurt over and over. I love my family and am so very grateful for them.
    Lately God has been asking me will I love Him regardless. Regardless of my financial position. Regardless of my job. Regardless…… If He never changes things, if this is where He wants me, if this is what His plan is even if I don’t think it’s the best. Will I love Him? It is easy to answer that with a yes when life is going smoothly. It can be a different situation when life is not.
    Anyway, my main thing tonight was to let you know I’m here. I tend to jump on your blog when I need a quick break from my work day, but can’t post comments from my work computer. And when I get home, being on the computer is often the LAST thing I want to do.
    Thanks though…..I love reading! :)

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