My Ink Dance

Discovering Extraordinary Grace in an Ordinary Life

What Circle Are You In?

When it comes to people I see great big circles drawn on the ground. The circles have labels like pretty or smart or athletic. And sometimes the circles even overlap. Everyone that fits in their circle finds their place. Yet, I am left standing on the outside for one reason.

I never fit into the right circles.

It’s true. I never quite fit. Not with the popular kids or the nerds. Not with the athletes or the artists. I was just there. I existed around the circles, running to see where I could fit.

I thought it would change when I grew up, but it’s not much different now. The circles change names, but that’s about all.

There’s the popular group full of friends and activities and parties and playdates. In the church world the pastors and worship leaders fit here.

The nerdy group bent toward the philosophical or the engineering mind. Any hope of this level of intelligence went out the window with my first pregnancy.

The athletes have only changed in that they are CrossFit, runner, spinning fanatics that make me simultaneously jealous and tired (and wanting to eat a donut).

The artists are this great blend of the cool kids with real smiles and the ones always in the know of the little café or flick or music on the scene.

Sure, there are more circles, but I’ve never found mine.

I wonder what it would even look like.

How about “Insecure formerly smart girls who love their family and their faith but screw it all up on a regular basis?”

Is there a group for that?

I keep looking, but I never seem to find it. And most of the time I have to hide that I’m even looking. I mean you can’t go around waving a sign that reads: LOOKING FOR THE MESSY PEOPLE. Because then you do fit into a circle, but that one is just called CRAZY.

What if we were never meant for circles?

If we put our worth in what circle we fit in, it will only be for part of who we are.

What if we were never meant for circles? {What Circle Are You In?} Click To Tweet

Circles are like Slinkys and picking one is like picking a cross section of ourselves and declaring that small piece to be all that we are, all that we’ll ever be. (Because anyone who’s been through high school knows you just don’t up and change circles.)

So maybe I have it all wrong. Maybe high school created another false reality that became ingrained in our psyche. When I look at those circles I think of how great it would be to fit in one, but what if fitting in is actually keeping us fenced into a place we were never meant to stay forever?

Maybe if we step out of the circle we will see that the rings are invisible and we can go anywhere we are called.

Maybe we’re missing the only circle that ever mattered: HIS.

Try this today: Think about this: what circles were you in during high school? Are they different now? What can you consciously do today that is outside of your circle, but in HIS?

Prayer: I am so grateful that You have this big, big circle that we all fit inside. Help me erase these circles I’ve drawn and move more fully in the only one that is real. The one that gives me my value and shows me unending love and grace. Thank You for loving me fully. Amen

If you liked this post, you’ll love the devotional book Worthy: Believe Who God Says You Are!

Sharing words at #raralinkup and with these great writers today!

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About Becky Hastings

I am emotional and logical. I am strong and dependent. I am a juxtaposition of head and heart exploring it all through writing. And in all my mixed-up ways I am loved. I'm here to tell you that you are, too. Just the way you are.

12 Replies

  1. A guy named Edwin Markham wrote a poem that I memorized when I was a teen — must have found it in a book somewhere — because I was feeling the crunch of circles. I’ve never forgotten it because, well . . . grown ups do circles, too.
    “He drew a circle that shut me out —
    Heretic, rebel, a thing to flout.
    But love and I had the wit to win.
    We drew a circle that took him in.”

    Let’s draw inclusive circles!

    1. Becky Hastings

      Yes, yes, yes! Amen Michele! Thanks for sharing!!!

    2. What an awesome poem that was Michele! Thank you for sharing that poem!

  2. Yes! We were never made for any circle other than His! When we try to get our value/self-worth/belonging from others, we set them up for failure and ourselves up for disappointment. He is the only one that can satisfy our deep felt needs. Great post!

    1. Becky Hastings

      Amen Esther! Thanks for being here!

  3. Love this!! But you’ve gotta know I’m in your Messy Girls Circle! And in His! The slinky is auch a strong visual. I’ve always felt I fit in several circles, and often pondered bringing all my circles together for one big pretty… I like trying to imagine watching all my fro day from different circles try to connect when sometimes if seems all they have in common is me, and God. Hmmm… XO

    1. Becky Hastings

      What a beautiful idea to bring those circles together! Kind of like the poem Michele shared!

  4. I had to laugh at your circle name; I might fit in that one myself. 🙂 I like the imagery that circles are like Slinkys. Thankful that we are in God’s inner circle now and forever!

    1. Becky Hastings

      I’m happy to have company 🙂

  5. Thank you for such a message. I have to say I would be in your messy circle. I am still the outsider today as I was in high school but for totally different reasons now. I am glad I am in Christ’s circle and no longer in “out” circle anymore.

    1. Becky Hastings


  6. I forgot to add that I am coming over from LLM Blog Hop!

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