I Am

I am Jesus Loria Dawal Jr., 26 years old, and I am a freelance writer who struggles to make ends meet. It would seem that I don’t know much about life, and that I only tend to worry about paying my bills and pleasing my clients, as well as how many calories I eat every day as if my life depended on it. Okay, the last part is not true. I may only know a thing or two about life, but I know that the one thing you should never forget to do while you’re still here is to continue living despite the struggles that you’re facing, despite the temptation to give up, despite the opinion of others that you have no right to live.

No, you have as much right as they have to live on this planet. Things might not seem like it, but you have an incredible destiny awaiting you. Before I answer how I was able to say so, let me first ask you why you don’t think so. Why, do you think you’re too ugly, too dark-skinned, and too untalented to add value and beauty to this planet? Why, whoever set the standard about beauty? Wasn’t it just us, humans, who invented the line that separates beauty and ugliness? Now, he who broke up with you in the past, and exchanged you for another is someone who does not understand beauty.

You are beauty, and you have the scars to prove it. Real beauty is being able to laugh at yourself for being silly. It is being able to accept that no one is perfect, and that you are not an exception. It is also being contented for what you have, and what you cannot change. You have a pug nose? So what? As long as you can breathe through your nostrils, then your nose is working just fine. You complain you’re not too tall? So what? At least you won’t have to worry about bumping your head while entering a taxi.

Beauty is contentment, and only those who have learned to love themselves for what they truly are, and accepted themselves for what they are not, get to have the time to live and think about adding value to the people around them. And when you learn to love yourself for all of your imperfections, you can find it in you to love others as well for all their flaws and inconsistencies. But don’t stop there. Love them enough to the point that you will help them to overcome their problems, and inspire them to become a better version of themselves.

To answer your question, let me tell you that you have an incredible destiny awaiting you simply because the One who made you said so. And you have no excuse not to do your best to become a better person. Even Nick Vujicic doesn’t have any arms or feet, yet he inspires people. How about you, how many hands do you have? How many feet? How many times did you fail, but still, are given enough air to breathe just to get through today? Time is a blessing that none of us deserve, yet we are receiving. You better use it well, because you can.

Finally, it is not the ones born with a silver spoon who get to change the world. It is not a matter of physical strength, mental aptitude, and material wealth, but of attitude and values. Someone said that it is not your aptitude, but your attitude, that will determine your altitude. I don’t know that guy, but I agree with him.

We get to face problems from time to time. A life that’s problem free is sweet illusion at best, and utterly impossible at worst. Even those who have a lot of money have to wrestle with protecting their wealth from thieves. So if you’re just going to have problems, why not deal with the ones that challenge you to grow, that make you see what you’re really made of, and that is too big for you to handle alone – one that which requires the help of your friends, loved ones, and mentors?

Remember when you faced a very big problem in the past, and that you thought it was the end of you? Well, you are still here. You outlived your problem. You will outlive the next one that will come along. Everyone can be great, because everyone can serve. Everybody can become beautiful, because everybody can love, and see the beauty in the brokenness, the message in the mess, and the possibilities in the ashes. You can.

And the next time you face a struggle, just remind yourself by saying, “I am meant to do great things. I am going to emerge victorious. I am going to soar higher than my trials. I am going to conquer my mountains. I am beautiful. I am.”

And please, next time, say it like you mean it.

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