I told my psychiatrist that everyone hates me. He said I was being ridiculous – everyone hasn’t met me yet.
– Rodney Dangerfield
I usually feel pretty good about myself when I wake up—for the five minutes I refrain from looking in the mirror. That’s when the voices start: “your thighs have more dimples than a Shirley Temple look-a-like convention!” they say, or “what kind of ’80’s- wannabe haircut is that?”
Then I take my older son to school, and notice that the work-outside-the-home moms look all coiffed and stylish. The voices deride my writer’s wardrobe of jeans and t-shirts.
At the grocery store with my youngest, I stand in front of the baby items and hear the little demons again: “you should be making your own baby food—it’s healthier.” In the household cleaners’ aisle, the stinkers hiss, “When was the last time you dusted?”
By the time I reach my house, I’m already defeated, and it’s only 9:30 a.m.
I don’t know who said it, but I believe it’s true: insecurity is the Devil’s playground. Or maybe the Devil’s battleground is a better word. His weapons attack from every side, and usually leave a wound.
It’s a constant war to not let the “what kind of mother am I?” questions run away with my emotions–and my peace.
Maybe you relate. If my hunch is right, a lack of security is epidemic among moms. Writer Kim Thomas puts it this way: “Insecurity and self-doubt always loom over my shoulder, and in less than five minutes I have moved from gratefulness to whining.”
And, let’s face it: we have plenty to be concerned about. There are our figures, our finances, our future, and our families—just to name a few.
Recently, after making an impulse purchase at the checkout line, I noticed the headline on the women’s magazine I had brought home: “Eat right, get fit, get organized, and relax.”
Who are they kidding?! I barely have time to take a shower each day, let alone have a perfect body or a spotless house. And relax while trying to keep it all together? Ha!
So I’ve decided to go on the offensive in this war on my thoughts and emotions. First, I’m going to stop letting the world’s standards rule my mind. With God’s help, I’ll tune into His word–and turn off the T.V. (And I’ll trash the women’s mags that spell out “25 Ways to Lose 25 Pounds in 25 Minutes”!)
Second, I’m going to quit comparing myself to other women. The truth is, they’re probably as unsure about themselves as I am.
Third, when the Prince of this world sends his darts towards me, I’ll put up my shield of faith and ask myself, just what is the real truth here?
The God-honest truth is: if my husband and I are raising our children by biblical standards, prayerfully doing the best we can, then God is pleased. As for my body, I know he wants me to be healthy and to take care of myself, but he could care less what size my thighs are.
And you know what else? I’m betting that since Jesus was a carpenter, He doesn’t mind a little dust.
Notes from the Coach:
“You will be secure, because there is hope . . . ” Job 11:18a, NIV
“Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will know what God wants you to do, and you will know how good and pleasing and perfect his will really is.” Romans 12:2, NLT
“In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one.” Ephesians 6:16, NIV
“Set your mind on the things above, not on the things that are on earth.” Colossians 3:2, NASB
“We use our powerful God-tools for smashing warped philosophies, tearing down barriers erected against the truth of God, fitting every loose thought and emotion and impulse into the structure of life shaped by Christ.” 2 Corinthians 10:5, MSG
©2009, Dena Dyer