God, Life Talk, stories

You Matter

Today is World Suicide Prevention Day. TWLOHA is doing a campaign this year titled “You Cannot Be Replaced.”

I’m not a big fan of open messages in general. Especially ones that are meant to be encouraging. Because most often, they end up depressing me MORE, and making me feel even more faceless and anonymous.

“Hey you,” on Twitter, @ nobody. “Yes, you. You are loved.”

Really? How do you know? You don’t even know who I am! If you really wanted to make me feel loved, take the time to find out my name and what I’m struggling with.

OK, yes. I have issues.

But I love this campaign. Because every single person, whether you or I or anyone else knows them or not, is unique and CANNOT BE REPLACED. This message? This one does give me hope, even if it is anonymous.

I believe in a Creator who purposely and carefully forms each and every human being on this earth. He knows every one of us by name. He has a story for each of us. He cares for each one of us. He DIED for each one of us. Not a faceless mass of humanity, but each individual person, those long dead and those not yet born included. He loves us.

He loves you.

He loves me.

And that makes each one of us precious and irreplaceable.

I know this, but I don’t believe it every day. I struggle a lot, actually, with feeling secondary, merely good for filling others’ needs, and could easily be replaced by a robot, because me as Louise, my individual personality and character and self-ness, doesn’t matter.

But that’s a lie.

God delights in me as a person.

And no matter what else, even if you strip everything else I do and am away, I have value because of that. Because he made me and he loves me. Because of him, I can stand tall and value myself.

I cannot be replaced.

And neither can you.

None of us can be.

We all matter.

7 thoughts on “You Matter”

  1. *excuse me, sniffling….* So easy to forget. In fact I still haven’t figured out what I’d write for that “Why I can’t be replaced” thing, myself. But it’s still true.

    “Hey you,” on Twitter, @ nobody. “Yes, you. You are loved.” –is this copy/pasted from something I wrote? Sounds like me. :)

    That’s the problem with social media. You can reach so many people at once, but it’s strangely impersonal, yet. That’s why I love when people comment back, because it’s like, the original posting was an INVITATION to have a more direct, personal conversation on it. This past week I’ve been struggling, wishing I had an ACTUAL PERSONAL support system, but instead I have an impersonal “Hi everyone, here I am!” system and people– from close friends to vague acquaintances– can say “hi” back if they so choose at that moment… *sigh*

    1. Social media is so odd. It tricks me into thinking “yay, I’m connected, I belong, I am one with the world!” and then two seconds later I can be even more depressed because I’m just an outsider after all.

      I didn’t actually know you felt the same way about the generic “you are loved and special” messages, but it doesn’t surprise me that we’re on the same page there. :-)

      1. Well, I USE those generic messages all the time, so it’s not like I DON’T like them. But they’re more like a “because I can’t actually go individually to everyone who may be reading this since I don’t even KNOW who’s reading this, I must resort to telling them all at large.” And the other things one posts, more personal things or not, it’s like, you just put them out into the world and there’s no guarantee that the people who might most appreciate what you’re saying are even going to see it, because maybe they’re too busy that day to catch up on Twitter or whatever… so it’s kind of like a desperate, semi-futile attempt at connection, rather than an immediate actual connection.

  2. Loved this post, El. Reading your perspective on open messages is a reminder that perhaps the first thing we should be doing when we reach out to people is telling them to “Love yourself.” more than “I love you”–if that makes sense. Both are important, of course, but if someone sees no value in themselves, they’re going to be reluctant to accept that a complete stranger could.

    1. Thank you, EJ. This is exactly why I have had to learn to find my value based in who created me instead of the world around me. Because I have to understand my value before I can ever believe that others see it in me.

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