I cannot believe I am writing about Lady Gaga. I have never had much to say about her except, perhaps, that time she wore the meat dress. Meat? For real? The smell of uncooked meat makes me want to puke. Making hamburger patties sends me over the edge. Can you imagine wearing it? I guess sacrifices are necessary when it comes to fashion.
Now, though, I do have something to say. Sunday night at the Oscars, Lady Gaga sang a tribute to Julie Andrews and The Sound of Music, and it was incredible. Here - listen for yourself.
Sure, Lady Gaga has sold millions of albums and won Grammy Awards, but to be quite honest, I didn't know she was such a great singer. She's always just been (in my mind) a walking gimmick. She has been so well known for what she wears that how she sings has been secondary, at least to me. Truthfully, however, she has great talent. It is, to be spiritual, a God-given talent. So here's what I have to say: sometimes the gimmicks we hide behind and use to gain attention only detract from the real purpose God created us to fulfill.
There's no doubt in my mind that Lady Gaga was created to sing. With a voice like hers, her purpose must include music. But the meat dresses, bizarre shoes, and unusual attire for which she has gotten attention have overshadowed the talent God gave her to share (not to mention glorify Him).
It's easy to point this out about Lady Gaga since she's such a famous figure, but aren't we all guilty, too? Aren't we afraid that we aren't enough on our own, so we need to dress up and show out and get attention by any means necessary? What would happen if we stopped with the charades and just did what we were meant to do? There is some reason that each of us exists, some purpose that only we can fulfill. For some, it is to use obvious talents like singing to bring attention to the Lord. For others, it's to quietly serve behind the scenes where no one ever even knows our names.
I read a great blog today by Lindsey Nobles called "Owning Our Gifts," and she just laid it all on the line. She said, "...this fall I started to forget who I am and the importance of my own voice and strengths. I started to believe that I wasn't enough. I started to diminish myself." I think we all diminish ourselves when we believe that our unique gifts do not compare to others' and we start artificially adding to them. We also diminish ourselves when we think that our gifts are just for ourselves, forgetting that they are meant to praise and edify the One who made us. I've been thinking about gifts a lot lately, mainly because I'm fighting with everything in me to use mine for Him, stripping everything away except what's true and raw and real. To be true and raw and real is to be vulnerable, and sometimes it's easier to cover vulnerability with a meat dress than it is to expose your stripped-down self and leave it open to criticism.
Lady Gaga, I'm speaking to you. Actually, I'm speaking to you, Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta, the woman who even needed to change her name. You are enough. Your talent is enough, your real self is enough, and it's time to stop the gimmicks. You wowed us all with your voice Sunday night, and nothing else was necessary. Your talent - your purpose in life - is enough.
I'm also speaking to you, dear reader. You are enough. Your talent is sufficient to be who you were meant to be. No more gimmicks, no more charades. Let's embrace the reality of who we are and run after our purposes with reckless abandon. Let's leave the meat dresses in the closet.
Photos courtesy of eonline.com and stylewithanna.com.