I read a story recently of a renowned pastor who took eight months off to do some self-reflection, to look for areas of sin in his life. I don’t know about you, but it wouldn’t take me eight months. 🙂
I think self-reflection is a good thing. Not to beat yourself up, but taking an honest look at yourself can be healthy. I’ve been taking stock of my own life lately and I have news that won’t surprise anyone – I am not perfect! In fact, I am not even close to being perfect. One of my favorite quotes that I say a lot is from Mary Poppins. She is measuring the children and then when the children ask how she measures up, her answer is, “Practically Perfect In Every Way.” I usually say this as a tongue-in-cheek response when someone asks me how I am doing.
Striving to be better at every aspect of my life is something that I have done for as long as I can remember. You would think that I would be better at almost everything since I have been trying for so long. But, instead, I still see the need for improvement in almost every area of my life.
There are a couple of defining words that sum up my life. Some of the major descriptions are daughter, wife, mother, and child of God. Even as I sit and stare at those simple little words, I can see the joy and also failure in all of them.
My early memories of my childhood are that I was a “fairly” good girl. I had my moments of rebellion and disobedience like everyone else, but overall, I didn’t cause my parents too many sleepless nights. Now, as a grown woman, I know that I need to call my parents more. I know that I need to make the time to travel back to their home and visit. But, I seem to let the demands of the day soon take a hold of me and all of my plans slip away.
Unfortunately, the same is true of my performance as a wife. I don’t take the time that I should to show my husband how much I love him and appreciate him. I take him for granted and put him on the back burner. My reasoning is that he will understand that I am busy. He knows that I have a lot on my plate right now and surely he can take care of himself for a little while. I am pretty sure that my marriage vows did not have the words “take care of yourself when I am busy” in them.
As a mother, the list of failures could go on and on. I don’t even like to think about all of the things that I did wrong in raising my kids. I tried to be a good mother but I would not say that I was anywhere close to “practically perfect.” I am incredibly proud of my children and how well they turned out in spite of my inadequacies.
One of the areas that I am most inadequate in is my relationship with my Lord and Savior. Striving to be a better Christian is a daily struggle. There are times when I find myself saying, “Jesus was the only perfect person to ever walk this earth so I am not the only one who needs help in this area.” It is like I find comfort in knowing that I am not the only one who struggles.
I recently heard someone ask a question that made me look at my struggles in a different light. They said, “If the person you were last year could see the person that you are now, would they be proud?” Wow! That shook me to the core. There are very few areas of my life that I can answer that question with a yes. I see so much that needs to change.
So, I have decided to start with a very small change in those areas. I know that to make a BIG change in anything that I need to start with the SMALL details. Making a phone call to my parents and children at least a couple of times a week is a small “do-able” change. Putting away my laptop and phone and having a nice dinner with my husband once a week is a “do-able” change. Refusing to open my computer or turn on my phone until after I have spent time with the Lord daily is a “do-able” change.
I will never be perfect. I will never even be “Practically Perfect.” But, I want to be able to look at myself a year from now and see progress. If I can see progress in different areas of my life yearly I will be happy.
Have A Blessed Day!