Just when you think you have it all together and are feeling confident, something happens to humble you.
This picture was taken five years ago at a wedding rehearsal dinner for one of my family members. I hadn’t been out and dressed up in quite a while. At the time, I was a stay-at-home mom of two boys so I rarely put on heels or dressed up. I walked into this event feeling confident and snazzy. I worked the room, talking to people I had never met before and mingling all night. It was a great evening and when we returned to our car, my oldest son looked down at my shoe and said, “Mom, are you saving that dinner roll for later?” That’s right, friends - I had somehow stabbed a thick and yummy dinner roll to my high heel at some point in the evening and went all night long without noticing. I had a flood of emotions and thoughts then as I wondered why no one noticed - or had the heart to tell me!!!! We had quite the laugh in the car that night and I was humbled as I was quickly reminded that nothing and no one is perfect. We can strive for perfection, we can put on smiles and fancy clothes, we can appear to have it all together in our beautiful houses and cars, but perfect does not exist on this earth.
I have learned through many humbling experiences to not take life so seriously. I have tripped at the most inopportune times, I have fallen out of booths because I have misstepped, I have taken out a whole blueberry stand at the grocery store (those are the tiniest pieces of fruit, they really travel when busted open!), I have lost my bikini bottoms on an inner tube going too fast and trying to look cool (my husband took a picture of me trying to retrieve my bottoms just so I don’t forget that fun moment), I have accidently lit my shoe and my jacket on fire on two different occasions…the list goes on and on. I can now laugh at those silly moments - but what about the hard moments? The moments I fail as a wife, mom, daughter, sister, friend; the opportunities I miss to say or do the right thing, the battles I choose to fight that don’t need fighting, the words I can’t take back, the actions that hurt someone I love…
As I get older, I am learning that I need to stop trying so hard to get it all right - there are days when I just cannot win, no matter how hard I try. Do we crumble in these moments or do we dust ourselves off and keep moving forward? Are we so hard on ourselves about failing and not looking all put together that we can’t allow God’s grace to cover and heal us? God loves us all perfectly and unconditionally; His perfect love is not based on our perfection or performance, yet I find myself not open to receiving God’s love because of guilt and feeling as if I can do nothing right. I have to go back to God’s truths of who He says I am, that He loves me for me, that He created me as a masterpiece, with uniqueness that adds to the body of Christ, with my own talents, clumsiness, humor, and heart for others. When I see how God sees me, I can accept and love myself for who I am.
Every day presents a new opportunity to accept the grace and new mercies of the day. Don’t walk around longing to be someone different or live in such guilt that you stunt your own growth. When you walk in a spirit of humbleness, you can see others around you - you can see their pain and empathize with them. You can be the encouragement they need because you can imagine how they feel. Being humble makes you relatable. Be open with your experiences so that others see the real you. Some of the deepest, most meaningful conversations I have had with people have been when they see my true self-God keeps our egos under control so that His glory shines, not our own. At the end of my life, I want people to remember how much I laughed, how much I gave of myself to others and how much I was willing to share about my life if it meant saving someone else's.
What is the legacy you are leaving behind? One that gripes and grumbles at every wrong doing and mistake or one that knows who they are in Christ?
Embrace the silly. Walk on with your dinner roll and your head held high. Invite people in no matter the clutter and mess of your home or in your heart. Be real and open to meaningful conversations that can grow deeper relationships. Walk in a spirit of humbleness so that you can love and encourage others along the way on this journey of life.
“For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.” Psalm 139:13-14 NIV
Love the Message translation as well, “Oh yes, you shaped me first inside, then out; you formed me in my mother’s womb. I thank you, High God-you’re breathtaking! Body and soul, I am marvelously made! I worship you in adoration-what a creation! You know me inside and out, you know every bone in my body; You know exactly how I was made bit by bit, how I was sculpted from nothing into something.” Psalm 139:13-15 MSG