I had a defining moment yesterday. Robert and I were texting. Once again, he brought up the “me” from when we were dating. As I taught Zumba, I thought about myself. How was I different? I reflected on the weekend and the women I danced with on Sunday. These are not insecure ladies. These were women who knew their talents and used them. They were not defined by anything you could see.
I thought to myself “I deserve better.” I even wrote it on Facebook. Yes, I finally got the clue that receiving negativity is not good for your heart, mind, or spirit. I was not valuing myself correctly. I thought about it and prayed on it. Deserve is not the word I needed it. Read on….
I have been reading the book “Christian Men Who Hate Women”. I know. The title is scary. I would never have picked it. It’s been amazing. It’s not what it sounds like.
Sure, you can blame your relationships on others or you can take a good hard look at yourself. This book helped me see myself in relationship with each of my husbands clearly. I am NOT the same. What I realized is that when I am married, I turn myself into a pretzel trying to please my husband. I try to do everything and anything he asks to make him happy. I completely lose sight of myself and my needs trying to be Bible correct. People or man pleasing is wrong. People/men can change what they want at the drop of a hat. In fact, sometimes they do just that to control you and manipulate you. You make the call if you want that kind of a relationship or if you should RECEIVE better.
Here’s where it gets good. We don’t deserve anything. We receive by the grace of God all that we are. He picked our families and has done all he can to direct our steps. In serving others, we cannot lose sight of him. We cannot make it all about pleasing someone or anyone. By always pleasing someone, sometimes we are doing them a disservice.
We need to serve God first. We need to meet our own needs and then meet the needs of others. Yes, Lord Jesus…you opened the door to my understanding on a whole new level. This isn’t about likes on Facebook, hashtags on Twitter, or any social acceptance. This is about downloading that Jesus came as a baby to be one of us. He came to heal and accept us at our lowly state and be one with us and his Father. He interceded on our behalf and took our sin and death to the cross. He was beaten and tortured which he did not DESERVE, but we RECEIVED his healing, his grace, and his forgiveness.
Thank you God for opening this door for me. I have had some torturous feelings in my past and present over serving others and not being appreciated. I have been made to feel less than you came to make me feel. You make me worthy. Not by what I can do on a dance floor. Not by how I give praise or lift my voice in song. Not by any amount of service. I am worthy because you died for me. I just needed to hear it again. I am just a little thick headed as you know.
So here we are. Today’s lesson. What value are YOU? I can answer that. He came to die for your sins. You must be really special for him to give up so much for you. So how will you live this life he has given? How will you serve that honor? How will you keep him in sight when all the pulls of the world and the people in it tug away?
I am taking deserve out of my vocabulary. I had it in my life for a few hours and I am done with it. I will give. I will receive. I will accept, but I don’t deserve any of it. I will be grateful. I will be honoring. I will do it to please my heavenly Father. I no longer serve this world, but only my father in heaven. So I see my own value. I see what he did for me. I see what he continues to do. I see the future in a much more clear way.
You are right Robert. I lost sight of that woman. She had it all together. She doubted herself less and believed in herself more. She was like the women she spent time with on Sunday. I like that woman. I still think I can do better than her and with God’s help, I know I will. So here’s to her….Lori Ann Struss, be all God is calling you to be. Step forward and become the woman he has requested of you to honor his name and not just whomever’s last name you share. AMEN!