Who Are You?

I mean really, who are you? Give me the deep. Give me the real. Give me the vulnerable. Give me the pain. Give me the joy. Who are you?

A couple months ago, a friend of mine brought this question up. You know the one. It’s at the beginning of all encounters with strangers.

“Hello, I’m (insert name here).”

“Nice to meet you (insert name here)! I’m (insert name here).”

“So what do you do?” And this question is usually answered by some sort of occupation. The conversation turns to job stories and then we part ways. They were really nice! Were? Nice? Oh did we miss the boat. They ARE so much more than nice. Yet all we gathered during our 3 minute encounter was they do something x number of hours a week with education, or cars, or computers, or, or, or.


Have you noticed how easy it is to stay at the surface with someone? Maybe we don’t even realize it–I would argue it’s because as a culture we are afraid. Afraid to go deep with a stranger, afraid to go deep with an acquaintance. We want to be likable, but at what cost? The cost of actually being known.

It might feel safe to keep distance between what you do and who you are, but you might as well lock up any dream of being understood with this thought process. When I think of how many people I’ve kept at the surface, it’s saddening. The time was filled with emptiness–nothingness. I missed the opportunity to know them and to be known.

Do you know who you are?

Are you having a hard time answering the question for yourself? Who am I? Try answering the question for someone else, someone you really know. “(So and so) is extremely empathetic and really can feel the pain others are going through. They find the hope in the darkness and always look at life half-full. They are a fighter, and have conquered many valleys….” On and on and on. It’s captivating and you want to know them more.

I’ll tell you what, people are much more likable once I know them. Or once I begin to know them for who they are. Isn’t our culture so backwards sometimes?


Here’s my double-dog-dare: the next time you talk to someone, ask them the question. “Who are you?” Sure it’s going to be awkward, but the one minute of awkwardness will be nothing compared to the forever feeling of being known. I would also bet the conversation will last much longer than 3 minutes so make sure you cross a few things out of that crowded schedule to make extra time! You never know who you might bump into.

So here we go, who are you?


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10 Responses to Who Are You?

  1. Julia Putzke says:

    I started to laugh when I read, “Give me the deep.” I think you (maybe) know why. 🙂

    I can tell you who I am: A girl trying to see herself as God sees her, until I don’t have to try.

    You want me to go deeper? 😉


    • lightthelie says:

      Ahh I missed the joke 😦 please fill me in! And yes always go deeper. Who is Julia, not what does she do but who is she? Is she compassionate, loving, nurturing, filled with fear or hope, interested, courious…etc. It really is a challenging question. I think because sometimes it’s hard to be honest about who we are. ❤


      • Julia Putzke says:

        Look at the last text I sent you. 🙂 You’ve got me thinking. I read this earlier and thought: Isn’t it selfish to call myself compassionate? Maybe I’ll email you about it ❤


  2. sedge808 says:

    my family will not go deep….it is a rule they sick by.
    i prefer to and have friends that do too.


    • lightthelie says:

      I see the same in family often! There is so much room for relationship if we would allow it. I’m glad to hear you have friends who will go deeper with you! Surface level is just so unfulfilling, isn’t it?

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Lori says:

    Hi Emily! I’ve missed you! Loved this post…and love that question!


    • lightthelie says:

      Thanks Lori! I’ve missed you as well! I’ve also missed creating beauty in the kitchen. My poor husband has done all the cooking the last three months! (Thankfully he is a natural in there) But I made dinner again for the first time last night 🙂 Looking forward to trying some more of your recipes and crafts!


  4. Natalie Brenner says:

    I am…me! Broken and messy, full of feely feels. I love jesus so much and desparately want to glorify Him with my life. I get hurt easily when im not seeing my identity in Christ. Im a doula which i love, but it can be painful at times too. I am also a wife; and that is an honor i dont want to take lightly.

    Liked by 1 person

    • lightthelie says:

      You are self giving, and a true servant at heart. You are filled with hope and love and it pours out on everyone around you. You are human and hurt and you stand up for yourself. You are wise, and have a heart posture that wants to continually grow. You are a leader and long to go deeper, especially with the youth. You are a nurturer and long to create your home to be a safe and welcoming environment. You are loyal. You are absolutely wonderful and I am so blessed beyond measure to have you in my life!! ❤


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