Monday, July 28, 2014
Things Take Time
In my last post I mentioned that I felt like this summer had been a sort of time of reinvention-- but if we're being honest, it's really been something going on within me over the last few years with the most intensity coming this summer. I don't know that I have the vocabulary to really describe it, but I'll give it a shot and try to keep it short.
Basically, I've kind of stopped caring. Not in an "I've given up" kind of way, but in the "I no longer care what other people think" kind of way. I am a recovering approval-addict. Starting around high school, I cared so much what others thought that I didn't really know who I was. I wanted my teachers and friends to think I was smart and witty and good at a lot of things. I wanted strangers to think my makeup and clothes and semi-athletic build meant I had it all together. I did everything every glossy magazine told me to do. It continued into college and into my early career.
But at some point in the last few years (I can't really pinpoint when things changed), I stopped seeking that approval so desperately. The growth I began experiencing in my faith started spilling over into my work and my friendships. I heard God whispering that His was truly the only approval that mattered.
And of course I've still struggled and still fought it. I've still been a sucker for a trendy outfit. I've still picked up books that everyone has raved about but that I really didn't like. I've still made sure I haven't left the house without makeup.
This summer though, I've done those things less and less. I haven't picked up a glossy magazine and couldn't tell you what the fall trends are-- not that they matter since the majority of my maternity clothes are seven years old and I really don't want to buy more with 15 weeks left to go. I've left the house without makeup more than I've left with makeup. I've pursued my own interests, read the things I want to read, and not put much effort into making sure people think I'm particularly smart or witty or that I have it all together (I really don't). It's been a slow transformation and reinvention of sorts.
Over the weekend, I went to the shores of Lake Erie with my family for a day. I walked along the beach and picked up some sea glass. There wasn't a lot to find given that a break wall stops a lot of "stuff" from coming to shore, but the sea glass gave me pause for a bit. Sea glass goes into the water as trash. It is litter. It is broken and ugly and rough around the edges. But the more time it spends in the water, the smoother it becomes. It turns into something beautiful and worth holding onto.
Slow miracles are like that. It takes time for God to smooth out our broken and ugly and rough edges and turn them into something beautiful. But the process is worth it.
I'm not finished yet. Not by a long shot. But I feel like a lot of those broken and ugly and rough edges have been undergoing a gradual smoothing process as I let go of the need for approval from others, as I grow in my relationship with my creator, and as One Ordinary Dad and I wait patiently for God to move on the vision we have for our family.
Fast miracles bring fast relief and freedom. But relief and freedom exist in the slow miracles too.
One Ordinary Mom :-)
PS...If you'd like to listen to the slow miracles sermon, head here: http://www.crossroads.net/my/media/messages.php#207
Click on the "Wonders Oakley" message from 7/19.