Donnie Dunagan is a pretty tough guy. Pictured below, you see him as a tough-nosed, highly decorated career marine. But Donnie had a secret. Something he did't want anyone, not even his wife, to know. As a young boy, Donnie was a child actor and was hand picked by Walt Disney to be the voice of the lead character in the 1942 classic, Bambi.
That's right, Commander Donnie Dunagan is Bambi, the sweet, frail, innocent, unsure of himself fawn. Not exactly the image a commander in the Marines wants to portray. So he kept it a secret throughout his career, only admitting it after he was outed by a superior officer. And once the word was out, Donnie made an amazing discovery. He was't laughed at and ridiculed as much as he was loved.
"I have some holes in my body that God did't put there" Donnie mused. "I got shot through my left knee. Got an award or two for saving lives over time. But I think I could have been appointed as the aide-de camp in the White House, it would't make any difference — it's Bambi that's so dear to people."
Behind all of the bravado, we all have something to hide. All of us, even the toughest, has fears and insecurities that we do't want others to see. So we hide our weaknesses, our frailties, sure that we could only be despised for them.
Do't wait your whole life before you discover that it is just as important to be honest and transparent about your weakness as your are about your strengths. For it is only then that others will find in you someone with whom they can relate.
Such humility not only draws us closers to people, it draws us closer to God.
"Whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and whoever humbles himself will be exalted" (Matthew 23:12).