“I’m marching to the beat of a different drum. Don’t let this world fit you into their mold. Go ahead, speak up, stand, and be bold. Follow the Lord—trust in His Word. Buck the crowd; be a little different.”
I always liked that song because the tune was a little peppy, and in my mind I could imagine the little girl who sang it dancing around on stage in her pink cowgirl boots, cutely admonishing the crowd to do what’s right, even when no one will join you.
The rest of that story is for another day, because right now I want to fast forward six years. My feet were once again marching to my own drum, but I was also around others whose beats matched mine. My new friends gave me their “Christian” mold and expected me to dutifully climb in and fill the form. I tried. In their mold, I was not bold. I was not speaking up or standing up or anything else up! My spirit felt deflated.
Then I had a stroke, the kind that paralyzes half your body and lands you in the hospital and rehab. Suddenly, I had no mold. My drum was barely even beating. I was at a complete loss as to who I was and who I was supposed to be around people.
In the almost seven years since that day, I have found my rhythm. I have found “my” mold. I have learned how to speak and stand, and to bravely follow the Lord (still working on the boldly part). I know who I am when I’m alone. I am (also) still working on who I am around people. But I refuse to get into anyone else’s mold, no matter how comfy it looks. When a crowd forms around me, I realize it’s time to start bucking. I was made different; I need to embrace it and act like it.
I know people who march to whatever drum around them is the loudest, and they scramble into whatever mold is offered to them. These people have no voice; they have no legs—metaphorically speaking, of course. They may not realize it, but they are not fulfilled. They are not living the life God created them to live. I know—I’ve been there.
When others’ drums and molds are cast away, and it’s just me alone with God, that inner serenity is worth fighting for. Try it; you might actually like it.