Who Told Me I Am Less Than?

Can I be transparent with you for a moment? Maybe peel back the facade and show the gag reel instead of the highlights (that’s what Facebook is for).  The real me struggles with constantly comparing myself with you, with that adorable couple two tables down, and with the charismatic extroverts who can walk into a crowd and literally talk about anything.  One of the side effects of a devastating divorce is that I all too often feel “less than”, like a failure at life. That I’ve let my kids down, because more often than not, the time I spend with them is breaking up one petty argument after another.  Anxiety and loneliness are frequent guests.

Don’t take my confession the wrong way. Not fishing for encouragement. I have a strong support system of friends and family who care about my heart. They’ve walked by my side every step of the way, remind of God’s grace and have pulled me from the mire, even when I wanted to withdraw.

The problem is that I listen to the wrong voice. I’m prone to it and have a hunch that I am not the only one.  We are all familiar with the story of Adam & Eve.  The serpent deceives Eve, she eats the forbidden fruit, Adam follows and they realize for the first time in their lives that they are stark naked. Embarrassed by their exposure, they immediately hide in order to medicate their shame. I love God’s response:

He said, “Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten of the tree of which I commanded you not to eat?” – ‭‭Genesis‬ ‭3:11‬ ‭ESV‬‬

God knew they were naked. He’s not stupid. But the call to action is “What voice are you listening to?”  The Serpent led them down a path of doubt, distorting their perspective of God’s motives. What was intended for liberation (i.e. you are free to eat…) became in their minds limitation (i.e. God just doesn’t want us to become like Him).

There was a critical moment in the Eden narrative. It’s the same moment we all experience where we choose to engage in the wrong conversation. It’s sort of like my cell phone. If I receive a call from someone who is not in my contacts, I don’t pick up. I know that if it is important, the caller will take the time to leave a voicemail. If they don’t leave a message, did I really miss anything? Choose instead to actively ignore the voice that tells you are less than, so that when you see your Heavenly Father on the caller ID, you are more than elated to pick it up and be encouraged.

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2 thoughts on “Who Told Me I Am Less Than?

  1. Absolutely love this Kevin. Our Heavenly Father made us for a reason, and he would not have put us here unless he valued the purpose for which He created us. It is so hard not to make comparisons with others, but those comparisons only lead to self doubt, jealousy and other ugly emotions if we do not keep ourselves in check. I learned a great tip a week ago. It is another definition of the 5 second rule. Instead of referring to the food dropped on the floor, we should use the 5 second rule to remove our ugly/negative thoughts from our head. My how life might change if we could put this in practice. I learned this in a study about prayer, but it is intended to help us not dwell on destructive things and point us to our Help when we struggle.

    On a different note, I struggle sometimes with whether I should post things on FB because I know some people may see it through a lens I do not intend. I have considered totally giving up FB because I do not want to harm anyone when I use it. Most of the time, I use FB for a personal journal where I will be able to see myself, my family and friends in good times when my memories begins to fade. I love sharing in others lives on FB as well.

    Thanks for sharing your heart, Kevin. Peace be with you my friend.

    1. Love the idea of applying the 5 second rule to those thoughts! Definitely worth implementing in the daily routine. A second thought came to me. In 1 Kings, God chose to speak to Elijah not in theatrics, but in the whisper. God wants us to pursue Him and reap the benefits of doing so. That in part is why I think He allows the world to be so loud.

      I have gone back & forth on Facebook myself. I stopped following Amanda because it was too painful. But after 15 years of marriage, we have a lot of photos of our kids that we are both tagged in. So every time a photo gets re-posted, my feed gets dinged. Painful, but humbling. But it’s just like the rest of life. We have to take the risk of being involved in other’s lives in order to reap the rewards of the wonders those relationships hold. Unfortunately, those relationships might hurt in the end.

      Thanks again for being a great mentor and friend. Appreciate your insight!

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