Thursday, December 17, 2015

gifted

In a season filled with gift giving I've found myself reflective of the non-physical gifts of those around me. This introspection was probably brought on by the fact that my knee-jerk reaction to my boss telling me not to worry about something was to respond, "you don't know me at all--worrying is the one thing I am good at!" and partially due to the fact that I am constantly noticing all the things Jon excels at (theology--I seriously think he has the potential to be an earth-changing theologian of our generation, cooking, singing/playing ukulele, loving our kids, being hot, essentially any hobby he picks up, etc.).

(If you haven't noticed in my writing or just from knowing me in general, I have a pretty poor view of myself and my capabilities.)

While I think it is important to be critical of one's self so that we constantly grow, I am critical of myself to a fault. I think I suck at my job. I think I am completely and unequivocally unattractive from a physical perspective. I constantly question my parenting and wifely abilities. I think I am incompetent and annoying*, loud and immature, a crappy Christian**, so on and so forth. 

In spite of my faults, I do my best to love my neighbors. To treat those around me with care and respect. To give a voice to the marginalized. To forgive those who have slighted me, be it actual or perceived.

But I can't extend the same grace to myself.

If pressed, I would say the only other thing I am good at is that I am empathetic and passionate about the issues that feel near to me. My heart aches for the hurting, the broken and the forgotten. I do what I can to help, but my help is oft contingent on my convenience and comfort level. 

In 2016 I want to be better at two things: saying yes when it's inconvenient and being kinder to myself. If I took the energy and passion I have for telling myself lies about how useless I am and redirected it towards doing something positive, perhaps I could learn to love myself a little bit and make an actual difference in the world. Perhaps by living my life more sacrificially I can better grasp--albeit never fully comprehend--the way Jesus loved sinful, unworthy me.

*this part is at least partially true 
**also at least partially true 

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