Last week, I read a beautiful post by my dear friend Marcy Crabtree over at the Ben & Me blog. She talked about “real life,” resisting the urge to compare ourselves with the so-called perfection we see around us, whether it be online, on television, or wherever else we find it. This week, as I prayed and prepared to write this post, I read the story of Saachi, a woman who listened to the lies about how worthless she was and tried to kill herself. Why do we do this to ourselves? Why do we endlessly compare ourselves with other women, other families, other ideals?
Consider this – in the thousands of years of human history that span countless societies, the image of the “ideal woman” has consistently changed. Some societies valued small frames and delicate constitutions. Others valued women whose physique lent itself well to bearing children. Some societies idealized women who were warriors; others thought it shameful for a woman to have the role as protector. And fashion – the extremes are endless! In a few short hundred years, American society has valued everything from stretch jeans that squeeze one’s “rear view” into an impossibly small package to bustles that made it impossible to pass through the average doorway!
So where does that leave us? For the Christian woman, we often turn to Proverbs 31 to read of the values that endure and serve as a role model today. But let’s be honest – just reading that list on a day when you’re feeling less than your best leaves you exhausted and at times even feeling defeated. But don’t you see, we’re doing it again? We’re comparing ourselves with the “ideal” woman. That is not what we are called to do. Jesus didn’t tell us to look around and worry about what everyone else is doing. Do you remember what He said to Peter when Peter started wondering what God’s purpose for his fellow apostle John was? “…what is that to you? You must follow me.”
Peter’s job wasn’t to look around; Peter’s job was to look to Jesus. Remember what happened when he took his eyes off of Jesus when he was walking on the water?
But don’t stop reading there. If you’re like me, you cringe when you think of the mistake Peter made because it reminds us each of the mistakes we make. Keep reading. Turn to Luke 7 and start reading again in verse 36. A woman came to Jesus. All she had to offer Him was her shame and her tears. Her life was a mess. Everyone knew it. There was no hiding it any more. She didn’t say anything, she just came to Jesus and wept at His feet. And what did Jesus say? “Your sins are forgiven . . . Your faith has saved you; go in peace.” What did He do? He forgave her and gave her peace.
May we each be as brave as she was and come to Jesus when all we have left to offer Him is our tears.
And may we have courage to believe Him when He says our sins are forgiven. He has paid for them with His blood. And He has given us peace.
Will we receive it?
Many of the Hausa-speaking people come to Algeria hoping for a new life. They have left their homeland of Nigeria, looking for peace and an end to the conflicts that shake their nation. But, most of the Hausa in Algeria do not know the Prince of Peace, the God who loves them and is able to bring them peace no matter their circumstances. Please pray that each of the Hausa, in Algeria and around the world, would hear and understand the message of true peace God brings. You can read more at http://www.globalprayerdigest.org/index.php/issue/day/Hausa-People-in-Algeria/.
Categories: Prayer Requests
Tags: Algeria, Hausa, help kids pray for Algeria, help kids pray for the 10/40 window, how to pray for Algeria, how to pray for the 10/40 window, Nigeria, peace, prayer request from Algeria, prayer requests from the 10/40 window, Prince of Peace
The Jatapu people of India are materially wealthier than many of their neighbors, but most of them are still trying to live a life of meaning without knowing the God who is the Source of all meaning and blessing. Please pray for them and read more here: http://www.globalprayerdigest.org/index.php/issue/day/Jatapu-People/.
War or peace? The Munnuru Kapa people of India used to know little but war, as their people were frequently struggling against invaders. But, a time of peace has come to the Munnuru Kapa, and with it, opportunities to hear about the God who can bring permanent peace to their hearts and lives. Please pray. You can read more here: http://www.globalprayerdigest.org/index.php/issue/day/Munnuru-Kapa-People/.
A backlog of twenty million cases is delaying justice for two Children’s Bible Club trainers in India who were brought up on false charges three years ago. Please pray for their patience and perseverance as they wait for another court date to arrive, one that will hopefully put an end to this case. You can read more here: http://www.mnnonline.org/article/17601.
Millions of people. Almost as many deities worshipped. Nepal is a country hungry for the truth that God alone can bring. Please pray for an upcoming shipment of Bibles for Nepal that is being prepared, and please pray for the hearts of the people of Nepal. You can read more here: http://www.mnnonline.org/article/17602.
Continue to pray for the on-going crisis in Syria. Thousands are fleeing. Uncertainty is rampant. Please pray for God’s peace to reign. You can read more on the story here: http://www.mnnonline.org/article/17527.
Ethnic violence between the Bodo tribespeople and Muslim immigrants is escalating into a crisis that could impact all of the nation of India. Please pray for God’s peace, and please read more here: http://www.mnnonline.org/article/17530.
Their church was attacked with Kalashnikov rifles. Electricity was shut off, and the door was blocked. Gunman have again attacked in Nigeria, killing at least nineteen at a church. Please pray for the victims who are suffering, and pray for God to work miraculously in every heart impacted by the ongoing violence. You can read more here: http://storify.com/opendoorsnews/nigerian-attack-kills-19-christians.
Many of the Velama people of India face a hopeless existence today and an eternity of despair. They need to hear that Jesus alone can save them from both. Please pray for workers to share God’s love with the Velama people, and for the Velama to respond with faith. You can read more here: http://www.globalprayerdigest.org/index.php/issue/day/Velama-People-of-India/.