#PreApproved Sisterhood Series
Welcome to a new series, hosted here on the blog. Every Tuesday night, one of our PreApproved sisters will share her story on letting go of a love idol.
Together, we’re giving up our love idols, and we’re not taking them back.
We are already approved; we have nothing to prove. In Christ, we are #preapproved.
Coming in Second
Sandra Heska King
Once upon a time, I was a beauty queen.
But I was never crowned.
And no official queen portrait exists.
Because I didn’t earn the title.
In fact, the photo that always appears in the “parade” of past queens in the annual pageant program is of a formal portrait taken when I represented my hometown in another local pageant.
I’ve always hated that picture.
One year I gave my sister a faded photo of me in all my queenly loveliness that she fixed somehow and gave to those responsible for program updating. But by the next year, it had disappeared, and the old one reappeared.
It’s awkward when a stranger who’s just been told you were once a queen asks why your photo is so different from everyone else’s.
You hesitate because inside you’re remembering you were really only second best. And how it always seemed you came in second. When your friend got an A on her paper, you got a B. When she was valedictorian, you were almost salutatorian. But not—because four of you had close to the same grade point and voted to have only one representative. You fell 200ths of a point behind that person.
Second place. Again.
You remember how you actually won the talent competition that year with your baton routine to Tijuana Taxi. And how you dropped your baton, but somehow it bounced right back into your hand. But you continued like nothing happened, and the judges apparently thought it was on purpose. Or maybe they appreciated how you went on in spite of the fail.
You remember how shocked you were because the second runner-up tap-danced awesomely through Winchester Cathedral, but she won the swimsuit contest.
Later your mother said you should have won the swimsuit contest. (Meaning, you hope, that because she was your mom, she wished you’d won both.) But you really didn’t want to be known for your swimsuit anyway.
You remember the question you drew from the basket. “What does happiness mean to you?” And how you stumbled through some ridiculous answer, and maybe that’s what sunk you.
You laugh because you wished you’d thought of your mom’s after-the-fact response: “Happiness is not having to answer this question.”
In the end, they draped you with a first-runner-up sash and handed you a little cuckoo clock.
But you just tell the stranger the “real” queen was unable to carry out her duties, and you had to take her place.
You don’t share how nobody quite knew what to do when she had to step down. How you had to go yourself to retrieve the plastic flower crown and how the banner was missing. How you made your own banner that bore your title so you didn’t melt into the crowd or go unnoticed.
This year we’ll celebrate 50 years of our hometown festival.
I’ll go, and they’ll probably ask the “old” queens to stand up and be acknowledged at the pageant. And maybe my preferred photo will be in the program and maybe not.
But it’s all good.
Because I know I’m always in first place with Jesus, and I don’t have to earn a title. He’s laid up a crown for me in heaven, and His banner over me is love.
And it’s the same with you.
I’m Sandra Heska King, and I’m preapproved.
Sandra Heska King (AKA SHK) lives in Michigan and writes from a 150-plus-year-old family farmhouse set on 60-something acres surrounded by corn or soybeans or sometimes wheat. She’s a camera-toting, recovering doer who’s learning to just. be. still.
Sandra blogs at sandraheskaking.com and sometimes spills words in other places across the Internet. You can catch up with her on Facebook and Twitter.
THE LOVE IDOL MOVEMENT
Click here to find out more about the Love Idol movement.
Click here to purchase the book that inspired the movement.
Click here to join us on Facebook as we lay down our Love Idols and declare our #preapproved status in Christ.
Click here to print the black and white preapproved cutouts.
Place these where ever your Love Idols have lurked!
A pink PreApproved printable: to frame, to put on your refrigerator, to give to a friend.
Click here to print. My gift to you, brave soul!