Bloom

Tonight I am going to dinner and then to a Women’s Conference at a local church with some ladies from my church. I have only met a couple of these ladies out of the group that is going. I have been at my home church for almost 5 years and I have not met a lot of people (that’s all on me!), so I am excited to get plugged in and make some new, like-minded friends. I am excited, but I am also nervous and my anxiety is taking over. Since we are meeting for dinner before the conference I will be going straight from school. This morning I was in the closet trying to figure out what to wear and it truly was like a typical “I have nothing to wear” scene from a movie. Outfits flying everywhere. My train of frustration gaining momentum by the second. The all too familiar battle cry “I have NO clothes” ringing through the house. But why? Of course, I want to look good, and feel good about myself – those are completely normal things. But as I sit here sipping my coffee trying to regain my composure and prep for an ALL DAY FUN DAY with twenty 9 and 10 year olds, I know that there is more to it. We as women are way too hard on ourselves to look a certain way. And it’s because we are so conditioned by the fact that we will be judged by each other. Sadly, we often make it into a competition. Just being real. We want to look as good as everyone around us – and by “as good” I mean better. We want other women to “approve” of us. We want to be “good enough.” (I’m saying we – but I guess I should say I).

Here’s the thing…I am attending a Bible conference with a group of amazing Christian women. I am certain that this group of women is full of love and grace and will be all welcoming to every single woman there. I truly do believe that. I’m sad that society has jaded me into worrying so much about my outer appearance, when I really have a whole lot of work to do on the inside.

Ladies, let’s stop competing and start building each other up. Let’s celebrate each other’s gifts and beauty rather than silently judging them against our own. Let’s look in the mirror and see ourselves as daughters of the ONE true King – made in His image. Let’s raise our daughters to understand that each flower blooms in its own perfect way and that they are all beautiful.

I am thankful for the opportunity to meet new friends tonight. And I am thankful that through the simple struggle of trying to find something to wear, God stopped me in my tracks to remind me of this lesson this morning.

Wonder

I woke early yesterday morning, not my normal early, but Christmas break early. The sky was still for the most part dark, and the house was quiet. As I crossed the room heading toward the bathroom, I caught site of the outside and the beautiful blanket of snow that covered everything in the backyard. In that instant, my excitement was childlike. I was transported back to snowy mornings as a young girl and the wonder of a white-covered world. In that instant, my adult worries and responsibilities ceased to exist and I took in every bit of the morning’s beauty. In that instant, all of the struggles and disappointments of 2020 were blanketed by this white wonderland. It was as if God knew that I needed this little bit of peace on the last day of a troubling year…and I just had to take the time to appreciate it and soak it in.

As we head into a new year, may we all stop and look at the world in wonder from time to time. May we enjoy the small, still moments of the morning, before the world is awake. May we see God’s hand in each day and never take for granted how amazing life can truly be. And may we view the world with childlike excitement and awe.