Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Redirected to Truth

Many of you already know about the great series of essays written by the guest blogger over at "Like I Was Saying," (this link should scoot you right to Part I) but for those of you who visit my blog and aren't connected to that network of gals, I'd like to encourage you to head over there now to read the 3 part series that's been going on for a few days.

Over the years, I have talked with many women and found the topic of judgements and divisions among women to be a fairly universal struggle. Because of the culture in which we live, the temptation to compare and contrast our lives with the others around us can be overwhelming. Powerful. Because of our sin nature (and we are ALL born with it!) for many of us, it comes out our mouths in harmful and wounding ways. Reading the series that Stephanie has laid out, I've been more convicted than ever to dig into the Word and seek the Truth about who I am - according to the only standard that ever matters: My Heavenly Father and His Written Word. This sequence of essays has sparked to be one of the more logical and concise discussions on the topic that I've read. And one of the more difficult conversations I've had with myself in a long time.

Leading up to this discussion of unity among women, I found myself thinking things that weren't holy or loving. Worse, I've said things out loud that first of all, I'm not used to saying out loud, and second, that I've had to go back and apologize for. They were things that most wouldn't think to repent over and I got some funny looks and assurances that it was "okay." But it wasn't okay for me. It was wrong and as humiliating as it was, I had to repent. It actually happened a couple times in the week or two before this series started. My Heavenly Father was graciously prepping me for the work He wants to renew in my heart.

This year I've begun volunteering with our Home and School Association whenever I can lend a hand. I've also offered my services to classroom teachers and the librarian. Whenever I'm with those moms, I tend to get very quiet and hold myself back. Some of it is my insecurities and sometimes false humility. I still don't know how I'll be accepted. But I feel fairly certain that I've given a wrong impression of who I am and what I'm about in those times. "I don't always know how to respond to some of the conversations around me," has been my excuse. But it's just that: an excuse. I do know how to respond. The Word says that a gentle answer turns aside wrath. The Word says that gossip is wrong. The Word says that I must speak with love. That I am a child of the King. The Word says that I have something to offer - and that something can change the world. And the heart. I DO know how to respond. I just haven't been faithful to do it.

As a result of this series, I am also feeling convicted and encouraged to adjust my tones and thoughts and words in regard to the women around me. I'm feeling pressed to look at the Moms in my life and find ways to further encourage and strengthen them in their walk with Jesus and in their parenting journey. I'm feeling very pressed to be a warm, loving, safe friend whenever I can, where ever that leads. Thanks to "Like I Was Saying" and guest blogger, Stephanie, I've been redirected to the Truth in this area of my life.


pups n horses said...

I read through the writings of the guest blogger and think of myself more of a stainless steel colander. Very strong, durable, yet can hold the things I need to hold and let go the things I need to let go. Please note that this analogy of myself is very much a work in progress. I tend to over think and to over analyze things, and have been told that I am very black and white in how I view the world around me. Knowing this to be true of myself I can see how judgmental I am and can be, and find myself catching my thoughts before they can become forever part of how I feel about something or someone. Because I have also been told that just because I think something doesn’t mean I should say it. This so often being the case in my life I am very proud of how I have progressed in this area, although again a work in progress. So in the end we are all not so different in this world, but if we can open up and be honest about ourselves it will ease the transition to becoming someone that by the end of the day can say that today was a good day.

Melissa said...

Your honesty is refreshing....it's funny how we all admit to this, yet we've all been on the receiving end and hurt by it, too. We tend to think of judgmental women as control freaks with hearts of pure cold stone, but that is not usually the case. At one time or another we all find ourselves in that place and the GOOD news is that when we realize it we can CHANGE by the grace of God and show our daughters that it is no way for them to live their lives!

Thank you for being so transparent.