I am Miley Cyrus.
At one time in my life, I was a girl who just wanted to be seen as a woman.
At times, I have acted certain ways because I longed for the approval of certain people.
At others, I have deliberately acted differently that how someone wanted me to act because I was determined to be an individual.
I have been manipulated by the praise and affirmation of people as easily as I've been wounded by their criticism and critique.
I have allowed the culture to define for me what it means to be a woman and to be desirable.
I have believed the lie that beauty on the outside means someone has more value or is more worthy of my attention.
I have acted without thinking about the consequences of my actions or considering the people who will be affected by them.
I have crossed lines in the name of blazing my own trail and finding myself.
I have been willing to compromise my character to get something I want.
I have celebrated my rebellion and laughed off my stubbornness.
I have wasted, squandered, and exploited gifts and opportunities that have been given to me.
I have acted entitled to things I did not earn and did not deserve.
And often, I have looked down on others who have done these things, as if I myself have not been guilty of the exact same things.
At times, I have been the good girl, and at others, the bad girl.
But at all times, I have been the girl who needs Someone to accept me-- not because of who I am but because of who He is.
I need to be loved with a love that does not depend on my behavior or my appropriateness or my lovability.
I need a Savior who was willing to be crushed not just for my bad behavior but also for my haughty self-righteousness.
I need a Friend who is willing to forgive me, despite the fact that I repeat my offenses on a daily basis.
I need a Father who will guide me, because left to my own demise, I repeatedly choose a way that leads to death.
I need a King who is good and fair and wise to invade my life, conquer my strong will, and overthrow the inept ruler I find myself to be.
I need a God who will accept me and Miley as we are. But not leave us there.
I need Hope.
I need Jesus. Every day. Every moment.
My God, my God, why has Thou accepted me?
It is the mystery of mercy,
and the song I sing.