I'm not Beth Moore and I don't want to be.

It's not that I don't think she's a fine person (I am sure she is ) and an incredible Bible teacher (I know she is) but I'm called to be the Bible teacher God has called me to be and it's not Beth Moore.

Years ago I went to a Sunday night Bible study — it was a new study by this vibrant women with big hair and then she opened her mouth  — out rolled that Southern (and yes, that IS capitalized) accent.  I didn't know what she was about to (or I should say, fixing to)  say, but I knew we were sisters in a way that only Big Hair Southern girls can be sisters — I think it has something to do with the amount  of hair products we use.

After watching her teach, I knew there was more to this girl than big hair and a drawl.  This girl loved her some Jesus — I mean she LOVED Jesus in a loud & proud way.   I didn't know who she was, and honestly didn't really care, I just knew I wanted that kind of love for the Lord.

I was at a place in my life where the Lord was working some stuff out — and it was some tough stuff.   What I call my ‘in the box' stuff, because I had tried so hard to put Jesus in the box.  If I could just serve on enough committees, have good children,  a good marriage and come to church every time the door opens than I'd met all that Jesus asked me to do, right?  Sadly, that's how I thought.

When I walked into that Bible study on that Sunday night, God had prepared my heart to move beyond the box.  To live outside of the lines.  I was beginning to realize that I could never be good enough — and praise God I was beginning to realize I didn't have to be.  That's the story of redemption and saving grace.

He saved me and has forgiven me of my sins.  I'm a new creation.  That was so hard for me to grasp — the grace.  That I don't have to do anything and Jesus will still love me — just the same.  Even if I don't serve on every committee or attend every event.  Even if I miss a Sunday morning – He still loves me.  And it's in this redeeming Love that I find the desire to serve Him – in all kinds of ways.

The reality of the grace I'd long lived under was taking root when I first encountered that big hair Bible teacher, Beth Moore.

What I saw in her was someone who loved her Jesus with a passion.  That's what I wanted — not her platform, but her passion.

The Lord has clearly called me to write and speak for His glory — and I serve Him with gladness.   But it breaks my heart when people ask me if I want to be Beth Moore — I don't.  I want to be me.  Mary, a slightly frazzled lover of Jesus and adventures (as long as I don't have to sleep on the ground) and I want to be the person God has called me to be.

Personally, I think Beth Moore is doing a mighty fine job being Beth Moore.  God's not looking for me to be her back up.

I share all of this with you because I see so many of  us girls trying to be someone else — whether it's the incredible blog writer, the inspiring Bible teacher, the funny speaker, the charming hostess, the talented seamstress, or the amazing Mom.

Girls, God has called YOU to be YOU!  Not a poor imitation of someone else.

He Loves you.  He wants you to have the passion for Him.    Whether you are called to stand on a platform or to take up tickets –He wants you to do it with a passion for Him

And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him. Colossians 3:17

Where is your passion?  Are you living it out or are you imitating someone else's passion?