Friday, April 17, 2015

Broken Into Beautiful: Post 8

"The righteousness of God comes through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe.  There is no difference, for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified freely by His grace through the redemption that came by Jesus Christ."

-Romans 3:22-24-

I have always struggled with measuring up.  I have rarely felt "good enough".  Not for my husband, my parents, in school, at work, as a wife, daughter, mother.  I still struggle daily with the anxiety this causes; always feeling like I need to more, be better, work harder.
Chronic illness has been a humbling experience for me.  There are days that I just can't push through.  I just fall short.  It has been a blessing of sorts, though.  It has helped me to understand Romans 3:22-24 in ways I would not have otherwise been able to.  I can never work hard enough to measure up for God, but I don't have to.  

By His grace, I am good enough.  Nothing else.

"God cares much more about our internal beauty, our reverence and love for Him, than our external beauty." -Gwen Smith

No matter how hard I work to be worthy of Him, I can never be good enough.  But He doesn't want me to be discouraged by that fact.  He has provided a way, through faith in Jesus Christ and love and reverence for Him, so that I don't have to work to be worthy!

Lord, let me be that woman!  A woman who fears You!
God's word is the key to keeping the lies of the enemy from becoming our truth.  Truth is not subjective-God's word has always been and will always be truth.

Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect. 
-Romans 2:22-
Comparison is another lie that holds us back from the truth of God's redeeming grace.  I am guilty of this one is so many ways!  We compare cars, homes, jobs, finances, clothes, children-the list could go on and on.  We are always looking to our neighbors, friends, co-workers, and other peers to see if we measure up.  We fail to realize that we are not looking in the right place-up, at what God expects from us, not what the world has or expects.

I often tell my children not to worry about what one sibling may or may not have gotten for Christmas, their birthday, or other gift.  I tell them not to worry about whether or not their siblings had more or less screen time that day, or how many chores they had to do.  I am trying to teach them not to compare.  Not to base their success or failure on what their siblings do or have.  I try to teach them to look to God's word to see if they are "measuring up" and to know that they will never do so with out His redeeming grace.  

Meanwhile, I model comparison (it's a work in progress).  Comparison takes my focus off God.  It leads to feelings of inadequacy and idol worship.  The areas we want to measure up in become the focus of our worship, not God.  It is a dangerous and slippery slope.  Descent is only stopped by refocusing on our Heavenly Father and being grateful each day for His provision.

"The Bible will keep you from sin, or sin will keep you from the Bible."
-DL Moody-