Saturday, October 4, 2014

i've been thinking about some things.

on wednesday morning, i walked into bible study with 200 other women.
i'd like to say i was excited and carefree and ready to learn, but i was drained and tired.
i was scatterbrained and spazzy and smiling only because it seemed like the easiest option.
the last 6 weeks have been brutal in every form and fashion. 
hurt feelings and disappointments and conflict.
i just have been trying to formulate all of my thoughts and it is tiring.

i can feel this from others - the defeat & discouragement.
i feel it when i log into instagram. the exhaustion people are feeling of having to keep up.
it comes out in weird ways sometimes : jealousy. competition. gossip. 
i felt it when i walked into church on wednesday morning.
stiff backs. tired eyes. quiet, fake "i'm good!" when asked how someone is doing.
this whole "keep up with everyone else" thing sure does get old sometimes.
it is hard to break the mold and just live with intention and be who you truly are.

so on wednesday morning, we all sat down and the lady leading worship started singing.
we all stood and sang the first song. 
and i will admit, i just wasn't really even thinking about the words.
i was just singing. and then she started singing another song. this song, if you will.
and it was like an instant weight started lifting from my shoulders.
and i just stood there unable to sing anymore because my eyes were full of tears.
and i mean, if you've ever tried to sing while you're on the verge of crying,
it is just like this weird wiggle in your throat and i wanted to spare myself the embarrassment.
and so i just listened for awhile. and watched as women started raising their hands
and really singing from their hearts, "he breaks every chain."
and i saw ladies start to sit down. i saw ladies (myself included) start to wipe their eyes.
and i heard sighs of relief all over the room.
200 women praising God that their chains of defeat and discouragement and despair were broken.
and for those few minutes, i felt it. 
i felt the hurt feelings and the disappointments and the conflict wash away & the power of Jesus just take over.


and it has got me thinking.
i don't know why we aren't on each other's side more.
i don't know why there are these expectations and these silent competitions.
and these struggles to do it this way & to keep up with that.
to have children who never disobey.
to get married by 25.
to make a certain amount of money.
to weigh a certain amount and wear a certain brand.
i mean, it is in every area of every person's life.
designing. decorating. parenting. jobs. LIVING.
even relationships with God get competitive - certain standards that we make up.
it is just too much. too heavy. too exhausting to try and keep up.
it just creates these chains that just help bind us up - 
to hold us back from living such a FREE life in Jesus Christ.
and yet - aren't we supposed to have each other's backs?

last week i was on a family vacation.
and we were in this restaurant and being seated and one of my children was causing a scene. 
and i had to walk them out of the restaurant three separate times.
and i just put a front on like, "oh guys, i got this. don't worry."
i boldly and bravely would walk this child out and hope that everyone thought i had it all together.
but inside. inside i was hot. and embarrassed. and worried about what my family thought of my parenting.
what the table next to me thought about my parenting.
and the third time i had to walk out, i mean, i was on the verge of tears.
i'm holding this screaming, red-faced child, trying to talk them out of this raging tantrum.
and this lady walked up to me and just said, "you are doing a great job."
and then kept walking.
i kinda chuckled and said, "oh thanks. this one is a handful for me right now."
trying to make light of the situation. 
but i can't stop thinking about it. about how in that moment, i felt like saying, "THANK YOU for noticing me. THANK YOU for not judging me. THANK YOU for encouraging me and believing in me and for saying what i just wish we all would say to each other."


i mean, what if this was how we all were?
what if instead of getting competitive with each other, we just love each other?
what if instead of judging each other, we just embrace each other?
instead of gossiping, we encouraged? it would change things.
we have to learn to believe the best about each other. 
there is freedom in Christ - and if he sets those hindrances FREE - then we should too.
we should be able to say, "hey, i see you're struggling with loneliness and defeat. 
i see you're discouraged and weighed down. 
i see you've been gossiped about, i see you've been hurt. i see you're disappointed.
be free. i've got your back. we all have your back. you are doing a great job."

listen. this could work. but it has to start with me.
and you. we've got to decide now to cut the crap & just be ourselves.
we've got to decide now to love on each other.
the Gospel of Jesus Christ breaks down chains & frees us.
let's not hold ourselves or each other captive anymore. 

8 comments:

  1. Oh, yes. YES!
    You know I'm with you here.
    It is time to cut the crap. Ain't nobody got time for it.
    I'm so thankful for that sweet angel of the Lord who spoke truth to you. We have got to be Jesus to each other. We have to stop all the nonsense.
    This is such a good word, K.

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  2. i love this and i love you.
    the pressure us women put on ourselves is big enough. we definitely don't need it from each other.
    my husband said to me a few weeks back, in a somewhat heated discussion. "Isn't it exhausting kelly, all the rules you, YOU, put on yourself." i burst into tear right then. it is so exhausting. we're all doing our best, we don't all fit into the same mold, and your right it should be acknowledged not looked down on or judged. just acknowledged. you're trying, i'm trying, and God loves us all know matter what.
    I'm so glad that woman "noticed" you.

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  3. Thank you so much for writing this post - I get it. I can feel so judged sometimes, and so lonely in it all. I hope, really hope, things will change. Understanding will live. Thanks for sharing! Margriet childoflight.nl

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  4. Yes, Katy! Thank you. Thank you for so eloquently putting this into words for all of us. I think we all struggle with this and it's overwhelming. Comparison and bad self esteem has kept me away from people for the past couple of years and in turn I've struggled with depression. I've discovered I need to be around people. People motivate me. But I'm still working on being okay with who God has made me and concentrating on Him alone. I start a new job (working with my husband) next week and will be put out in to the public eye on a daily basis. I know I will be seeing people (women) with whom I compare myself to, but I know the Lord has prepared me for this and I will be going out there with a new perspective. This post comes at the exact right moment. Isn't it funny how the Lord works like that? Thanks again.

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  5. This spoke to my heart in soooo many ways. Wow. I will come back to read this again & again. Thank you for posting your thoughts.

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