Is This Real Life?

Monday, March 18, 2013  ::  

Sometimes people will innocently tell me that they don't need an update on how I'm doing because they read my blog. Uh, say what?

That's somewhat terrifying. That would mean people may think that I'm pre-tty spectacular...amazing parent, memorizing scripture all the time, surviving this stroke stuff with outstanding positivity.


To be honest, one of my fears in blog land is the fairy tale people can inadvertently or intentionally create about life. I believe blogs is to this generation as soap operas were to my mom's generation. If we aren't careful it can amount to countless hours of reading about making our homes magazine beautiful, or parenting like a magician, or how to be a holy Christian, or living more eco-fabulous, or feeling burdened to read more books, or how to change your fashion look to be trendy, fancy, modest, hottest...this list goes on for infinity.

Hear me on this. I am NOT saying, "Stop reading blogs." I AM saying, "Be wise and discerning."

Also, hear me on this. I am so far from perfect. This isn't a statement of false humility. I will admit that by the grace of God, I've grown in maturity, wisdom, and understanding through the years. However, when I talk to people further along in their life journey, I long to continue to grow and learn and change. I'm turning 40 in about a month, so I've been reflecting on this quite a bit which has given me the desire to confess some of my shortcomings to you in order to remind you that I'm just a plain lady that understands on some level what I've been redeemed from and I'm continuing to learn and grow in my understanding of what I've been redeemed for.

In parenting...
  • I sometimes become very impatient with my teenagers who are age-appropriately seeking to "do it their own way." In some situations I revert back to the younger years of wanting them to just do what I said because I said to do it.
  • One time I yelled right in Esther's face. It was horrible. 
  • Lately, I've struggled to be nurturing and have even noticed myself recoiling from tender moments. 
  • Often my kids try to get my attention but I'm completely spaced out, on my phone, or on my computer and don't hear them until they are frustrated. This is a big deficiency I'm working on. 
In ministry... 
  • Sometimes I feel anxious before our Sunday gathering trying to remember personal ways to connect with women. 
  • I've become so frustrated in my inability to memorize scripture that I haven't tried in awhile. 
  • I compare myself with other bloggers wishing I had more followers or a broader influence. Gag. 
  • I'm fearful that I will receive no new vision for leading the women of our church. 
In life...
  • For the last few months I felt entitled to drink a Starbucks chai almost every day. I've given it up for now.
  • Pride sometimes causes me to long to do "big things" for God, but I'm afraid my desires may be for my name's sake, not His. Sigh.
  • Since I've been on sabbatical, I've battled comparison my house, in my shape, in my effectiveness. It has been an exhausting fight. Even as an almost 40 year old I am still learning to take my thoughts captive
  • For some strange irrational reason, I am dreading turning 40. Shiver. 

Well, there ya have it. Actually, you just have a little. I enjoy making people squirm in some awkwardness, but I don't want to overwhelm you with all my junk. Turns out Jesus is the only One grand, supreme, just, and forgiving enough to deal with all my junk.  

Friends, let's not live a facade. I hope you each have a few people in your life with whom you can be honest. If you don't, ask the Spirit of God to give you courage to truly share your heart, to give you trustworthy friends, to enable you to depend on others and allow others to depend on you. 

Let's also be wise as we look to all sorts of media to learn some amazing skills, recipes, and life tools. Ask God to give you security in Himdiscernment with informationwisdom in scripture, and contentment with your own race.

Colossians 2:6-7
So then, just as you have received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live in him, rooted and established in him, strengthened in the faith just as you were taught, overflowing with thankfulness. 

How do you respond to information you see, hear, or read? What tool do you use to filter information that comes into your heart, mind, and soul?

Do you ever compare yourself to those around you? What are the areas of your life that need attention and/or surrender to Jesus? What evidence from your life shows your security in Christ?

Who can you encourage today to run the race Jesus has marked out for them? Will you encourage yourself to run your own race?

Psalm 19:14
May the words of my mouth and the mediation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, O Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer. 

5 important comments so far. What are your thoughts?

Alysa said...

I love this post. This is a constant struggle for me. As soon as I think I have it figured out, I realize I don't. I've started waking up each day and laying my life (and blog) down before God, praying that I will seek His face, not my own glory.

I'm thankful for community and friends who know the behind-the-scenes me.

I know God has great (not necessarily big) things for me, if I would just get out of my own way.

Love you.

Unknown said...

This is an excellent reminder. I love your heart, Angel!

Erin Fabry said...

Thank you for your refreshing authenticity. I need a reminder that I don't need to have it figured out, I can lean on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith.

I have major bouts with insecurity, which usually lead me on a downward spiral because then I feel insecure about my insecurity...this reminder helps me surrender all my cares and worries to the Lord. He's never failed me. He is only faithful--even when I forget who I am in Him. Thank you Angel!

Emily said...

Love your heart and honesty friend. I think this is something we all struggle with, which is why this is such a good reminder. We each need to run our own race and let God's opinion be the one that matters. I love that you are an example of a woman that continues in her walk, refusing to be part of the statistic of people that coast in their relationship with Jesus beyond young adulthood.

Jenn said...

Well said, my sweet friend! Thank you for challenging us through leading by example and being bold enough to share with all of us what goes through your mind.

I'll be thinking through the questions you posed; looking specifically at the idea of comparison in my own life.

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