Tuesday, December 10, 2013

"I wish I had her teeth" and Other Thoughts on Insecurity.

She leaned across the table, assertively, yet gently, pounded her fist on the table and gave me eye contact I knew better than to break.

"Rebekah, stop it.  I have something to tell you from God."

Tears of passion kinda filled her eyes. Her voice increased with confidence as she spoke.  "Rebekah, you need to keep your head down and do what God has called you to do. Stop worrying about this person or that person.  Quit comparing yourself to this person or that person. Stop it. Keep your head down and focus on what God has for you."

The conversation continued as God and this woman showed me the condition of my heart.  I was drowning in insecurities.  Insecurities that loved to disguise themselves in a casserole of self pity and humility, but were truly rooted in a selfish pride.  Insecurities that were a secret even to me!

You would think that this big of a challenge and 'calling out' would be followed with a sadness, or a depression.  But friends, when we hear truth, we find freedom. 

We were at Panera, of course, because Jesus hangs out there. And it was already a year ago.  But this conversation still sits on my heart almost daily. In the same vein of my last post, which was based off of some powerful advice from my mentor, this advice from another woman has reached to every corner of my heart in 2013.

"Keep your head down and just do what God has called you to do."

As women, it is SO easy to get caught up in comparing, envying, and worrying about what 'she' is doing. "She" can be so many different women, sometimes a different woman every week. So often we live in a secret insecurity, wanting 'her' marriage, 'her' charisma.  I want 'her' reputation, 'her' favor, 'her' friends.' 'Her' teeth. (Maybe that's just me.)

But ladies, one of the problems with these insecurities, these comparisons, this competitive spirit, is that it distracts us.  It distracts us from what God has for us to do!  When we are caught keeping score, trying to win at…..life, it means we aren't looking at our God. 

And if we aren't just gazing at him, then we forget about his love, we forget that he has graciously given us all things. We forget about how He is fully sufficient, that He is truly all that we need.  We don't have to be high achievers, charming, clean, or impressive.  His love is enough for us. 

When we glance away, we invite a world of sins to our doorstep.  Discontentment and jealousy show up first.  Then negativity and anger are right behind.  And often,  gossip and slander follow. Before you know it, you are hosting a party that you don't want to attend.

In 2013, God has gently showed me this incognito sin, as well as well as the roots of it.  Pride.  This poisonous love of self.  That I think I deserve 'this', that I'm better than 'them.' Pride is a cancer that can only be abolished by the power of Christ. 

As God has continued to speak to me about this, he has showed me even more of the casualty of insecurity. When we are too busy comparing and competing with the women in our lives we are not serving them!  I don't know about you, but it's really hard for me to truly love and serve somebody if I'm comparing myself to them. 

But, oh, to be confident in who I am in Christ! (A message we think is for the teenage girls, but one we need to revisit.) Our goodness is not in our reputation, our friendliness, or our Pinterest projects.  We are not confident because our husbands get hot meals to eat and a clean toilet to dirty. :) We are good because Jesus is our good.  HE is our righteousness.  And that is enough. And when we keep our heads down, and focus in on who Jesus is, and who is says we are, then the comparisons and competition disappear. 

AND THEN, all of the sudden, I have all this time to do what he has called me to do!  Sometimes that is big stuff, like Adored, or serving our husbands ministry, but often, it's just loving the people he has put in our lives. Often, just freeing our brain and heart up from a prideful insecurity makes room to hear from God.

So, imaginary friends from cyber world, will you try it with me?  Focus in, keep you head down, or look up--whatever phrase hits home with you.  And just do what God has called you to do.

Love your children.  Open your doors. Give away your money.  Forgive your husband.  Extend grace.  Lead a conference. Change your bad attitude. Write a book.  Inspire the youth.  Surrender your fears. Go overseas. Scrub your toilets.

Whatever it is, let's do it.

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