Have you ever had one of those long, discouraging, frustrating days?
Have you ever let your stress and frustration lead you to make choices that you later regretted?
Yeah, me too.
I was talking with a good friend last night, and she’d had a long, disappointing Monday.
Everywhere she turned she was pelted with lies, frustration, discouragement.
She was lamenting that at the end of her long day, in the midst of trying to bake cookies for a sick friend, after burning half of them, she finally gave in and ate some of the cookies she had wanted to avoid.
Her feelings of frustration led her to run to quick and easy comfort. Homemade, half burned cookies.
Only the cookies didn’t satisfy – and when we talked, she was now carrying the guilt and shame for the poor choice she had made.
I have so been there.
My guess is you have too.
Reminds me of when I once met with my therapist. I was telling her how disgusted I was that I had given in and eaten some of my homemade cookies.
My kids were 1, 2, 3, and 10. I was trying to make friends at Jake’s new school, and came up with the brilliant idea to invite all the 4th grade moms over for coffee, conversation, and homemade chocolate chip cookies.
I know, what was I thinking?!
I was a frazzled, non-baking, overwhelmed mess. In the midst of trying to wipe down counters, keep my preschool aged kiddos busy, roll store bought dough on cookie sheets, and frantically hide all our clutter – I gave in and ate (or more like inhaled) 4 cookies.
I sunk down on my therapist’s couch later that week and cried about my choices.
Trying to live up to other’s expectations. Striving to pretend I had it all together – when the reality was I was hanging on my a thread (a thin thread, at that). Hoping to impress with my baking skills. Longing for connection and acceptance. Disappointed that I tried to numb my feelings with homemade cookies – and then allowing the enemy to flood me with the lies and guilt and shame.
My therapist listened and nodded and finally said, “Cindy, do you think you are the only woman who has eaten some of her homemade cookies?”
“But I ate FOUR cookies. Not one, not two, but FOUR.” I quickly replied, still obviously filled with shame and self-loathing.
“Cindy, do you think you are the only woman who has eaten FOUR of her homemade cookies?” my therapist replied.
“Um, yeah, probably not”.
Last night, as I listened with my friend and gently encouraged her with words of grace and hope, I reminded her of the same words that were shared with me…”Do you think you are the only woman who has eaten some of her homemade cookies?”
Friend, I’m not sure what you are faced with today, but may I remind you, you are not the only one.
- You are not the only one who deviated from your healthy eating plan.
- You are not the only one who chose sleeping in vs. morning quiet time.
- You are not the only one who yelled out of anger.
- You are not the only one who let the kids watch TV so you could sneak in a nap or a chance to peek at FB.
- You are not the only one who has feelings of disappointment, discouragement, or “overwhelmedness”.
- You are not the only one who struggles with feeling “not enough” in a world filled with air brushed images of perfection.
You Are Not the Only One!
And the GOOD NEWS is that we get to make a different choice! We can extend and accept the same GRACE we would share with a girlfriend to ourselves.
We would never say to a friend who ate 4 cookies, “I know – you stink. You were a chubby girl growing up, and you will always be a chubby girl. You have no self control, everyone thinks you are fat, and no one likes you anyway.”
We would never say that, right?? Why do we let the enemy put such horrible, garbage thoughts in our head???!
We can choose grace over guilt!
We can choose freedom over frustration!
We can choose acceptance of ourselves (just the way that we are!) over constant criticism, self loathing, and comparison.
We can choose life…life to the full, more than enough, super abundance, full, free LIFE! (John 10:10)
How about you, dear friend?
In what areas are you struggling with feeling like you are the only one? How have you learned to live out your victory and freedom? I’d love for you to share with us, please!
May the God who made you, knows you, loves you, and desires to fill your days with good, rich, satisfying LIFE – remind you that you are not the only one wrestling with “stuff” and that you are accepted and loved (just the way that you are!)
Thanks for stopping by *She Sparkles*!
Sweet blessings ~
……repost from the archives….