Do you struggle with comparing yourself to others?
Do you ever feel like everyone else has everything going for them and somehow you missed the boat?
Are there times that you get caught up in what everyone else is doing?
I know I sure do.
This is going to be another one of those “putting it all out there” posts.
I want you to know that I don’t take writing lightly. I pray and I seek God’s face daily, multiple times a day, believing that the Holy Spirit is my guide when it comes to writing.
January was a brutal month. I was literally discouraged, lonely, and down much of the entire month.
Yes, I know, January is just one of those months. January is hard for a lot of people. Especially those of us who live in cold climates.
Yet, this January seemed different, somehow. It was like there was a tremendous battle going on in me.
Ephesians 6:12 (NIV) For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.
Try as I might, I struggled to shake it. One day, I’d feel okay. The next, not so much. I could go on and on, but I won’t.
Instead, I want to share what I learned throughout this month.
Romans 8:28 (NIV) And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.
The longer that I live, the more that I realize that God works everything together for good for those who believe. That good often doesn’t look like I think it should, but God is still good.
Here’s what I know to be true:
- The Spiritual Realm is alive and active.
Yes, I know this.
I’m sure that you also know this.
Yet it’s so easy to forget.
It’s easy to see only from the natural realm and not the Spirit. It’s easy to think that all these things we are going through are just us. That maybe it’s just hormones. Maybe it’s just the lack of sunshine. Maybe we are going through depression.
I don’t diminish any of those things. Many of us actually do struggle with those things.
But, we must remember that Jesus paid the price for those things.
Isaiah 53:5 (KJV) But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was on him; and with his stripes we are healed.
- We are not meant to handle life alone.
I’ll be honest, I am terrible with this. When I am feeling down, my head tells me that no one likes me anyway. Why would I try to reach out? So I went through January mostly alone. I played the “I’m fine” game. I didn’t tell anyone how I was really feeling.
Don’t do that. Ask someone to pray for you. Reach out.
- Get your sweet self outside.
It doesn’t matter if it’s “too cold,” I promise it will help. We need to bundle ourselves up and get outside. Every time I did that this month, I felt so much better. If you can, make it a time for prayer and communion with God. Walks with God are absolutely amazing!
I know that Praise works. You probably know that as well. Somehow, though, we all need that reminder. To just let go of the feelings, the fears, the emotions and praise him. Your praise could be singing, it could be listing all the ways that God is good, or it could be thanking him for all your blessings.
- Learn to accept yourself for you
The comparison and the beating yourself up has to go.
It’s so hard, isn’t it?
Yet, we were made uniquely us. God has given each and every one of us talents, skills, and abilities. We weren’t meant to be exactly like anyone else on this earth! Really we should be proud of this! Why is that we are often trying to be like everyone else? I’m not you and you’re not me.
Psalm 139:13-18 (NLT) You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body and knit me together in my mother’s womb. Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex! Your workmanship is marvelous—how well I know it. You watched me as I was being formed in utter seclusion, as I was woven together in the dark of the womb. You saw me before I was born. Every day of my life was recorded in your book. Every moment was laid out before a single day had passed. How precious are your thoughts about me, O God. They cannot be numbered! I can’t even count them; they outnumber the grains of sand! And when I wake up, you are still with me!
So when I go through tough times, I’m (slowly) learning to let go and be who God has called me to be. I pray that you will be encouraged to accept yourself for who you’ve been called to be as well.
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