Kill the Mockingbird

Have you seen a mockingbird before?

I haven’t but heard that it’s a special kind of bird, one of those that imitate sounds. Born of the thrasher family of birds, it is commonly found in North America.

Rather than singing their own songs, the mockingbird learns and repeats the songs of other species. And its’ pretty good at that – able to confidently learn up to 200 songs during its lifetime. The males are often more vocal than the females and can sing throughout the day (24hours!) during its breeding season.

Not only can these birds mimic other birds calls, there are a wide range of other sounds – sirens, bells, frogs, crickets, squirrels,  a home alarm, rusty gate, the whirring and squeaks of a washing machine  – within their capacity and these they do with grace and skill!

Nothern mockingbird

Now, here’s the catch: these mockingbirds are gracefully skilful at imitation! But why? Couldn’t they have spent the time discovering and learning their original voice?

And that unanswered question lingered in my mind: a life of mimicry.

I stopped thinking about these cute little birds, but now directed my thought to my own life and the lives of humans in general.

There is a mockingbird in every one of us – that part of you that doesn’t appreciate your originality, and always looking for someone to imitate. And when we’re not so good at it, we shrink into the inferiority complex.

Many young people want to be someone else. We work our heads off and spend so much time learning and skilfully working at being like that movie star, that businessman, that friend, that pastor or what have you – we try to match a picture that is isn’t ours.

Because of insecurity or unwillingness, we fail to discover our authenticity and how God wants you to live, and copy the patterns of the world system

Listen to what God says:

Don’t become so well-adjusted to your culture that you fit into it without even thinking. Instead, fix your attention on God. You’ll be changed from the inside out. Readily recognize what he wants from you, and quickly respond to it. Unlike the culture around you, always dragging you down to its level of immaturity, God brings the best out of you, develops well-formed maturity in you.

Rom 12:2 [MSG]

Let God tell you who you are and how to live – by communing with Him and staying in His Word regularly.

You are born with a unique purpose. Kill the mockingbird in you!

Share: in what ways have you been a mockingbird? What changes could you make?

Author: Toluwanimi

Toluwanimi believes young people can do great things with their lives. “Give them wings; watch them soar,” He always says. He is a physician by training and a budding behavioral scientist with a keen interest in child and adolescent health and development. Having worked with teenagers for over a decade, he loves to study and practice evidenced-based methods of inspiring positive behavioral change. His current project, GrandHeights, aims to provide resources and mentorship connections that inspire and empower young people to realize their life’s full potential despite negative circumstances around them. He plans to develop an establishment that will conduct research, develop effective strategies that will impart hope, empowerment, and refuge for youth and families in at-risk situations. He also believes creativity can be a transformative tool and through his start-up, Missionary Creatives, he helps nonprofits tell their stories and develop strategies to drive growth.

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