Monday, July 18, 2011

Feeling inadequate - a confession

The world is a rough place to live nowadays.  We women have enough telling us that we aren't perfect.  If we aren't a size 2 we are over weight.  If our house isn't perfectly clean then we are slobs.  If our kids misbehave when they are small or make wrong choices when they are older then it is our fault. 
We get enough of this stuff with out it coming from other women or even ourselves. 
When I first started homeschooling I would buy the homeschooling magazines and read how other homeschoolers were doing it.  You know the magazines, the ones with the family of 12 on the front cover all clean and shiny with matching outfits with the matching article inside telling you how they all get up so cheerfully and have their breakfast finished and all the chores done with no complaining by 7.  I was lucky if my kids were up and ready for school by 10 never mind that they were still in there pj's and eating cereal while they did their math.  And I only had three kids. 
I find myself falling into that trap time and again but in different areas of my life.  Just recently I found myself  being trapped when I was reading other blogs.  There are so many out there that write so eloquently and they draw such wonderful points from scripture.  They can sound so deep no matter if they are writing about some profound point or how to make apple pie. 
I am a simple woman.  I draw strength from spending time with  the Lord in the Bible and prayer.  I don't expound very much (much to my husband's dismay).  I take the Bible at face value and don't feel like you have to go into great theological debates to present the gospel to other's.  Like one of our past pastor's said once I like the K.I.S.S. method.  Keep It Simple Stupid!! 
I found myself being trapped when it was implied recently by someone that because I have many interests that I must be lacking in my walk with the Lord.  What that person didn't take into account was the many different things that I do that are done when others aren't around to witness it.  I just finished the latest book by JimBob and Michelle Duggar (that's another post)  In it they said that they listen to a recording of the Bible everynight so I have started doing that with my phone and the audio Bible I have on there.  The only problem is getting the volume right so it's loud enough to hear but soft enough that I can go to sleep.  I usually turn it off during the night sometime but it is pumping into my brain the whole time.  In the morning while I am driving to where ever I happen to be walking that day I listen to Pilgrim's Progress (this is the current book my husband and I are listening to) for a half an hour (my audible app has a sleep feature that I can set it for 30 minutes).  I will continue listening when I get to where I am walking.  After that time is up I go through my scripture memory list a few times ( I also have an app for this that will read the list for me, yes it's computer voice but it is a good way for me to review my list). I listen to Beth Moore or Kay Arthur on my way home (my husband and I are currently listening to Kay Arthur speak about Matthew).  All of this is done before 8 am without to many witness except for a few birds and squirrels.  My other interests are more public like watching tv (not very much) watching movies, reading, blogging, and crafts of various types.  So it may seem like I spend more time on other pursuits where in actuality I spend more time on spiritual things.
I found myself in the trap recently of thinking that I am not (wasn't) a very good parent because of some choices and mistakes that my adult children have made.  I have to remind myself that they were taught right from wrong and it is their choice which way they choose.  And they need to live with their choices.  My Husband and I weren't perfect parents but we did what we thought best and to the best of our abilities and love our children no matter what they do (this in no way means that we condone some of their decisions).
I guess this is all to say that when you find yourself falling into one of these traps look at what you do in that area that is positive.  If you can learn something from someone else then by all means do it and find a way to fit it into your life but do just that ,  make it yours not a copy of someone else.  God made us each different,  Wouldn't it be awfully dull if we were all the same. 


Becky K. said...

What an excellent post! I am touched by your honesty and blessed by your friendship.

If we compare ourselves with anyone we are only comparing with the things we know of or can see. As in your case so much of a person's life is lived in private....most of the time we only see what the other person wants us to see...their best qualities. Not a fair comparison, at all.

Besides, you are so right about not wanting all of us to be just alike!

Kelly said...

Great post. Sorry that you were feeling a bit defeated, but glad you were able to realize it was a trap and that you didn't need to allow it to keep you down.

It is so easy to fall into the temptation of comparing ourselves with others, but you know, what we see of others, may not be their true selves either. Most often, people do their best to appear that they have it all together when in the public eye, when, in reality, their lives may not be so all-together.

I finally began my exercise program today.

Ronda said...

Such a lovely and honest post. Fabulous insight that we all should consider.
All adults & parents have times where they feel temporarily defeated, but reminding ourselves that we did the best could at that particular point in time is key, and you are absolutely right in that we also must keep in mind that when our children reach adulthood they are responsible for their decissions and actions....we must continue to pray for them.

Dont be hard on yourself, keep going like you are, and this post gave me a wonderful idea about how to enjoy more of God's precious word. Thank you!
Thanks for sharing yourself with us.

Love & Prayers,