Sunday, January 3, 2010


Starting off the New Year I decided to write about some advice that an older friend of mine gave to a small Bible Study group I was in a few years ago. We were all sitting around , discussing problems, our feeble solutions, our frustrations with ourselves, our spouses, our lives...and she was sitting in her chair , listening to us and about to give us some very sage advice.
Her name was Marjorie , she had four sons...her husband left her when they were all under 5 years old. She worked hard all her life, and she was a very knowledgeable Christian and happy person to be around in general .
She would be 70 years old that year.
She waited until we were all through talking,  leaned forward in her chair...and said these words,
" I have lived longer than most of you, and what I have learned is what you all need to learn, Be more gentle with yourself. "
I remember that really struck me, as I am pretty hard on myself..especially in the " Not-being a good enough Christian" department, but also the
Not being a good enough wife department
Not being a good enough Mother department
Definitely not being a great housekeeper department
Not being a good enough friend department
Community volunteer
School volunteer
Church volunteer
I could go on and on.
I think that women , even more than men, try to measure up to a standard of beauty, righteousness, domesticity, graciousness, intelligence, servant hood, self-sacrifice...and we end up falling so short of our goals or our ideals for ourselves ( and that society expects of us ), that we then can come down very
HARD on ourselves.  
What Marjorie was trying to teach us women, and there were women in their 20's, 30', 40's and 50's in that room...was when we focus on being tough with ourselves...we end up sapping our strength from what we ARE
doing a good job at in life.

I believe the devil is always working on us to shift our focus on us and our weaknesses, our sins...and robbing us of our JOY in our special selves that God created.
If we focus on what we are not good at...we lose sight of God and how He can use us , at what we ARE good at doing. 

I have actually told many young women , in their 20's, to be more gentle with themselves, because that is where it starts...being hard on yourself when you are young.
No one ever told me to be gentle with myself until Marjorie did that day.
Women need to be more gentle with themselves physically , mentally and emotionally.
I hope your New Year begins with gentleness towards yourself...I think how to learn to do that more is pretend you are a friend that is doing whatever you are doing that causes stress or excess energy to drain from your life...and what would you tell that friend ( which is you ), what advice would you give her ?
I'll bet is is different than what you tell yourself most times.
Remember how very important you are to God today,
Bless you,

" Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. " Matthew 11:29

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