I grew up feeling like I was never good enough. It wasn’t something that anyone told me, I was raised in a loving, supportive family. I just knew I didn’t fit in.
I was a little bit nerdy (ok, a LOT), I took my schoolwork seriously and wasn’t good at sports. I desperately wanted to be a cheerleader but I had these awful short hamstrings that prevented me from doing any sort of toe touching! Oh, and I was painfully shy. A complete and total package!
In fact, just in case you don’t believe me….drink it in ladies, drink it in!
I spent a lot of years wishing I was something more. Wanting to have the voice of the “popular Kristin” so that I could be in the school musical. Wanting to have the athletic ability of “Holley” so I could play on the basketball team, or the beautiful, long hair of “Alanna”, instead of my rocking mullet. Can you blame me?? Did you see the picture above?!
It didn’t matter what I DID have, I wanted what someone else had because I believed it to be better.
I was unable to see the gifts that God had given me because I was so focused on the gifts He hadn’t. (<== Click to Tweet)
This year I celebrated my 39th birthday and thank goodness things have changed, right? Oh, how I would love to tell you that I have a new found confidence, but friends, may I be honest with you for a moment?
This is an area of bondage that continues today.
It just looks different as an adult. Today those things are replaced instead with jealousy over those mothers who seem to have it all together, the writers who are publishing yet another book, and the blogger whose post went viral.
I look at all of you and I not only see how you are following your dreams and succeeding, I also see in glaring contrast, what appears to be my failures at the very same.
And I feel jealous.
There I said it – that “J” word. A single word that can, at times, keep us from seeing our own potential and stop us dead in our tracks.
I mean if I can’t do things like XYZ…. why bother right?
So the dreams are put on the shelf, which for a person like me, only stirs the jealousy pot even more.
It is a pit that I have had to climb out of on more occasions than I can think of.
And yet there is hope.
Recently I messaged a blogger friend, one that I was feeling jealous of for all the wrong reasons. A beautiful woman who has discovered her gift of building community and is blessing so many. But I would see her and her presence within this blogging community and I wanted what she had. I wondered “why not me”?
I don’t know why I felt I had to tell her the ugliness that was in my heart – but I did. Mostly I wanted to encourage her. To tell her how I see her and to tell her that what she does matters because she is using God’s gifts in an amazing way. Also to thank her for staying the course, because she is making a difference.
She was so very gracious and even shared some of her own struggles. Even the women, who seem to have it all together, often admit to feeling inadequate at times. Ladies we are not alone in this!
And I started to see her from God’s perspective and not my jealous-colored glasses one.
Each of us was created with unique gifts. For some it is building community. For others it may be writing that “it” post that creates a buzz around the internet. Maybe for me, God created me with the ability to share my weaknesses in the hopes to encourage others.
None of it is better or worse. It’s just different. And it’s ok!
When we start chasing God’s dreams for our lives we will see beauty. Just the way God designed our individual lives to be.
Don’t let jealousy stop you from following His plan. Resist focusing on what everyone else seems to be doing “right” and start thanking God for the gifts He has given you.
Beautiful, individual, you!
Has jealousy even been something that you struggle with? If this is an area of bondage for you as well, please leave a comment and allow me the honor of praying for you!
Shared by: Kristin Smith
Photo Credit: Tim Fields