Question: What’s one thing that if, taken away from you, leaves you feeling hurt or even devastated, insecure, “less than”, not yourself, invalidated?
What is it that wrecks you?
- A note from your kid’s teacher about an “issue”?
- A breakup?
- The loss of a title, or job?
- The lack of invitation in a certain area?
- Crickets rather than “likes” and affirmation in an environment where you thought you were gifted or competent?
How dependent are you on that “thing” for your sense of well-being?
I like to think of myself as “teflon” (don’t we all?), but then something big or little will surprise me the way it brings up all the yucky feels.
We want to be seen as the super-mom, the competent colleague, the successful host, the dynamic team leader.
“One of the tragedies of our life is that we keep forgetting who we are, and waste a lot of time to prove what doesn’t need to be proved.” Henri Nouwen
Confession: One of the reasons I took a sabbatical from writing this blog and one of the reasons I’m throwing out the “rules” of when and where and how to post now is that I recognized that it was sucking me into measuring my worth by the response I was getting. I needed to pursue a “holy indifference” to anything other than joyfully stewarding my gifts for the Lord alone.
In 2015 the Barna Group did a study that showed that women 18 and older in the United States, go to social media, trying to connect and feel better about themselves, but only 14% come away encouraged.
We’ve turned the Gospel into a matter of addition instead of subtraction. When we are so full of ourselves, we have no room—and no need—for God or others, or otherness in general. Richard Rohr
If we have not experienced (the) connection, (of) knowing that we are indeed a fragment of the Great Flame, we will most certainly need to accumulate more and more outer things as substitutes for self-worth. This, of course, is the great spiritual illusion. We needn’t acquire what we already have. Our value comes from our inherent participation in God. Richard Rohr
So…a few things that have been helpful to me. Maybe you too…
- Separate from what separates you from your true identity in Jesus. If a relationship or a TV show, or seeing the posts of someone raises your anxiety or makes you feel less-than, ask yourself why. If necessary, block them from your feed, but better yet, have a conversation with them about it.
- Major on the unchanging truth of God’s Word instead of the whims of culture and criticism. What’s one go-to verse that is helpful for you? For me it’s:
Find rest my soul in God alone. My hope comes from Him. He is my rock and my salvation. He is my fortress. I will not be shaken. My salvation and my honor depend on God; He is my mighty rock, my refuge. Psalm 62:5-7
- Evaluate what and who brings out the best in you. Lean into them, and let them lean into you.
That’s all I’ve got. What about you? What would you add?