Be Real. Be YOU!

I love down time. Until recently, I can honestly say that I never really knew what it was. It was this illusive thing my friends took for themselves and their families – vacations, long weekends away, days with absolutely nothing to do. I didn't think it really existed. And then I found it. And I don’t ever want to lose it again.

Ah, the simple life. I've had a hard time finding it. And I suspect I’ll have an ever harder time keeping up with it.

I’ll let you in on a little secret, I never seem to measure up to the high standards I set for myself. (Can you relate?) Even when it comes to finding some precious downtime. Silly, but true.

I will never be perfect. I will never be a size 0. I will never have perfect hair. Or perfect makeup. Or even the perfect clothes. And forget about the perfect nails or the latest fashions. It’s just not who I am.

There is no such thing as perfect. It’s an illusion we all seem to strive for. And I’m sick of it.

I think I’m finally realizing that I’m sort of cool. I’m pretty simple. I’m modest. I’m way insecure. I’m funny. And a little bit crazy (in a good way!) I really like my hair long, but I'll likely cut it short at some point and start growing it out all over again, cuz I'm never really content, even when it comes to my hair. And I can’t stand dresses. That’s just how God wired me. And you know what? I'm finally learning to accept that. That's OK. Besides...why try to be something you aren't? It’s tiring! And I’m done with it!

So can I make a plea with you today….and will you please hear me out….
…………let's stop comparing ourselves to others and just be real!


We are all a little broken...and that's OK! Let's forget happiness, perfection, or whatever it is you might be striving for today - at least as dictated by the world’s standards. It’s exhausting! (And can we truly be happy, perfect, fashionable or insert your impossible desire here by the world’s standards anyway? They're constantly changing!) 

It's time to gain some perspective...

There is no such thing as happily ever after. So throw it out the window. Start from scratch…grounded in reality this time!

Let’s agree to just be “happy” resting in the Lord. Downright JOYFUL even! With whatever comes our way. I mean after all, even in the worst, most difficult times of life, if the Lord is with us, who can be against us? (Romans 8:31)

We can still be joyful despite all the chaos, imperfection and pain of life...at least that is what God has taught this girl through 2 severe car accidents, several major health crises, a very difficult childhood and a slew of other spiritual and life struggles that have molded me into the Christian woman that I am today. And if I had a do over, I wouldn't change a thing. I'm alive and kicking and loving the Lord!

We all have issues to deal with in our daily lives. We are all imperfect. We all come with baggage. And we all need a savior. But sometimes in the day to day hustle and bustle of life we forget all that. We put on our smiley faces, tell the world we are "fine" and we go about our daily lives barely scratching the surface with our husbands, kids, family and friends!

Let's stop the madness shall we? Let's be real with one another. Let's share our deepest fears, crazy imperfections, silliest failures and deepest joys with each other!

Be bold! Be strong! Be courageous! Do not be afraid, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go. (Joshua 1:9)

Stick this on your to do list this week:
Share one deep, muddy thing happening in your life with just one person today! Only one. Not two. Start slow. Grow big! 

Bring the darkness into the light. Be real. Be free. Be YOU...the beautiful you God created you to be. It's the best you yet. Promise!

17 comments:

  1. I agree. There is so much freedom and peace in transparency. In just being who you are, and not wearing a mask. It's the best thing. (And I'm bad about not taking enough downtime too.) :)

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    1. There is so much freedom and peace in transparency! I totally agree Jamie...and yet we all fail so miserably so frequently don't we? :) Blessings to you sweet lady. And may we both continue working on taking that much needed, precious downtime. Nothing better than a refreshed soul to tackle this long road of life!

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    1. Hope you can get some sweet downtime in your own hectic life. Praying that you are able to be more authentic with your family and friends this week!

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  3. Love it, Nicki! This is exactly where I'm at--finding that embracing all of who I am is a good thing. Thanks for this inspiring word, my friend! Great words!

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    1. Thanks Beth! I was talking to a girlfriend yesterday about this very thing. We concluded that we seem to get more "wise" as we grow older and slowly scratch away all the pretense that goes with being younger and worrying what everyone thinks about us. Maybe that is it...or maybe it's just as we grow older and more solid in our faith, God wipes away that pretense and allows our true selves to shine through. Dunno. But either way it's always good food for thought! :)

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  4. I'm a little broken, and that's ok. Amen!
    So grateful for a God and Savior who is perfect.
    Thanks for your words today :)

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    1. Thanks for blessing me by reading my words today! I love how life seems to be okay (even when it's really not) when we rest in God's perfection and stop worrying about our own. Blessings to you! Nicki

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  5. Nicki,
    SO glad I linked up behind you at Laura's...what freedom and joy in embracing how God made us..all unique and beautiful...Thanks :)

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    1. We are truly all unique and beautiful. Yet so intimately made in His image. Thanks for reading Dolly. Blessings to you!

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  6. Love this! God is working on bringing me back to transparency. Last year we visited with old friends from my youth/young adult years, and one of them made a comment about how I had always been so transparent, and what a blessing that was. I realized that due to various difficult issues in recent years, I had really shut off much of that transparency in an attempt to protect myself. God gave me a longing for that old transparency again, and He is slowly growing it in me. It's scary sometimes, but what a blessing...for ourselves and for others! Thanks for sharing this.

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    1. Isn't it funny how as we age and grow more "wise" transparency becomes a much easier thing? I pray you will be able to relearn how to be more open with those closest to you. And may you be able to use that in your own writing to encourage others too. Thanks for the encouragement. I'm humbled that God allowed my words to help reaffirm something He was showing you!

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  7. I'm right there with ya on the whole never liking my hair thing! And I'm not the most fashionably dressed either. (Not that I wouldn't like to be but I just can't justify spending what it would take to buy the clothes I actually like. But I digress....)
    I'm passionate about living according to your own individual strengths and not trying to do thing outside of your areas of giftedness. But even with that passion I still compare myself to others. That mom who sends out birthday cards (real cards with a stamp and an address and that had to be carried all the way to the mailbox!) on everyone's birthday, or that mom who goes to the dollar store and decorates her whole house for every single holiday, I could go on. But I have to realize that while St.Patrick's Day might very well come and go unnoticed, it's OK. Because I bring joy and beauty to the world in other ways. I have to respect that and just keep building on my positives instead of wishing I was "like her" in some way or another.
    I wrote about it one day when I felt bad that I wasn't dressed like a cow. http://bethcranford.com/i-wish-i-was-a-mom-like-that/

    Thanks for the reminder!

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    1. God wires us all differently and with that comes freedom not oppression in how we view the world and other women. I am so glad you are continuing to see the joy and beauty you bring to the world. Keep the faith and thanks for sharing! And may we both someday be happy with our hair! ;)

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  8. Oh, how I love that quote. It has to be okay that we're all a little broken!

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