Within the past few weeks I have superglued my hand to my steering wheel, locked my keys in my car and got stuck in a car wash resulting in a nasty dent on the passenger side of my beautiful car. I’ve also experienced some spiraling into dark places in my mind as the enemy whispers lies. To say this past month has been bad for my self-esteem would be an understatement.
Today I spoke with a friend who said she had just felt “off” these past few weeks. It helped to know someone else was experiencing the fatigue and frustration that this pandemic has created. I haven’t felt like myself in about a month. But instead of really doing the work of introspection and problem solving, I fell into the familiar coping strategy of demanding others give me what I lack. Blaming, being insecure, trying to cover up the real issue by garnering things I’m not yet equipped to have, and all of that has twisted my sense of self-worth and rendered me seemingly powerless. I first used the word “forgotten”, but I think I really mean powerless.
Being without power is an illusion, though. I found a great article in bustle.com about regaining your power and this quote stood out:
“Complaining suggests that you can’t feel the way you want to until someone or something changes…it breeds self-victimization, and there’s no position of lesser power…than that. When you interrupt the impulse to complain, you recenter your agency in the situation – and empower yourself to actually do something about what’s bothering you.”
I have found the worst thing I can possibly do to myself is make comparisons. That holds true for all of us. It’s hard not to, though. Someone always has a better job, more well-behaved children, a bigger house, more education, fewer pounds or wrinkles…it never ends until WE end the comparison. Maybe that means taking a break from social media, or simply choosing the quiet of prayer and letting God tell us what we are truly worth. All I know is that I am no good to anyone while living in the shadow of self-doubt. In fact, I do damage. I place demands on people they were never meant to satisfy. “Fix this thing only I can fix but don’t want to deal with” is a surefire way to send people screaming in the opposite direction. And so unbecoming of who we are called to be in Christ.
I’m struggling. I don’t like the world we live in right now. It feels foreign, divided, contentious, disingenuous and oppressive. But what is NOT going to fix that is a new house, a new car, or any type of major life change. What IS going to fix that feeling is watering the grass we are standing on, working through the emotional landmines and embracing the life we have RIGHT NOW as training ground so we can look forward to even better times in our future.
It’s all about choice. I can only speak for myself and hope my fellow brothers and sisters can relate to the emotional train wreck we cause when we dare to compare. Adam and Eve wanted more than they had and look where that got them (and us). My personal choices don’t impact all of human kind, but they certainly impact the humans I need to be kindest to, so I will choose more wisely in my future about whom I aspire to be and limit that simply to Summer, daughter of the King, and live my life accordingly.