The “Youtube” generation got a self-confidence check Saturday night, in what I think was the best sketch-based social commentary on SNL since the last presidential election. This video is hilarious. There is just enough truth to the premise to make us all a little uncomfortable. It’s kind of scary. Will my kids be brimming with unearned self-confidence?
The best exchange was:
Taylor: “I’m what you would call Twitter Famous.”
Taylor: “Not famous.”
Host: “I suppose your self-esteem reflects that?”
Taylor: “No, on the contrary my self-esteem is through the roof because nobody has ever been honest with me about how mediocre I am.”
Empty praise is an illusion which leads to a distorted view of the self. It’s not that self-worth should be strictly tied to performance, but it should at least be tied to reality.
What we should teach our kids is not, “you can be anything,” but rather, “You cannot be anything, because you have to be you.” It’s great to tell your kid, “You have unique gifts, talents, personalities, callings, etc.” But, it must be said in the context of learning that those things are gifts which are meant to be stewarded for the kingdom of God. Uniqueness is not achieved, it is a gift from God. Maybe we should tell our kids, “You cannot be anything! Because you’ve been made for a unique purpose. Your job is to figure out who you are, what you are good at, bad at, passionate about and willing to work for. Then you look to see where God is at work int he world & leverage all that you know about yourself to participate in God’s redemptive project. You are responsible to be who God has called you to be, and to allow God’s kingdom to break into this world through the way you live, and work, and love, and even how you view yourself.”