The Mercy We All Need

I’m writing over on The Glorious Table today!

Here’s a preview:

When I was learning to cook, I discovered a few things the hard way. Vanilla extract does not taste good by itself, baking chocolate is not the same as a candy bar, and forgetting to include key ingredients will result in something that might look like the picture in the cookbook, but won’t taste like it’s supposed to. This same lesson has repeated itself in a variety of ways in my life.

Social media is the temptation these days. I forget the cooking lesson and fall into the comparison trap. When I see the family photo where everyone is smiling in matching outfits, I immediately decide my friend’s life is more organized and together than mine. Capsule wardrobe wearers remind me I have too many clothes. People who are engaging in the Whole30 highlight that I am not eating a “clean” diet.My tendency is always to compare my internal mess to someone else’s exterior presentation. I forget that a picture reveals one small part of a life and instead decide that one picture presents the totality of a life.

2017 has been one of the hardest years my husband and I have faced thus far. Job loss, financial unknowns, and uprooting our family and moving have all been a part of our story. The first few days of this unexpected journey consisted of deep wounds, fear, and anger. It would have been easy to hide away from people by staying off social media and staying sequestered in my house. I could have pretended life was going along smoothly and dealt with the turmoil internally.

Instead, I opened up. I ignored the feelings of comparison and inferiority, and I simply stated the truth of what was happening in my life at a specific moment.

The women I opened up to immediately began to pray for our family. In fact, they continued to pray and ask for updates. They sent words of encouragement and never once offered me anything but support. The day I was able to share the news we would be moving soon because my husband had obtained a new job, the celebration was full and genuine. The care and support didn’t end there. Friends gave us boxes and planned a celebration in our new town. Some researched our soon-to-be community on our behalf, gathering useful information for us. We were starting from scratch and needed to find doctors, a church, and housing. Our friends connected us with resources to help us make the best possible decisions. Continue reading here…