Whose Kids Am I Raising?

Whose Kids Am I Raising?

November 16, 2016

“… we will not compare ourselves with each other as if one of us were better and another worse. We have far more interesting things to do with our lives. Each of us is an original.” Galatians 5:26 (MSG)

Devotion Graphic

You’d think I’d be a faster learner.

But there I go again. In a dressing room. Under those unforgiving florescent lights. Trying on that cut, this style, that fad that looks so cute on so-and-so.

And not so cute on me.

On these hips. At this age. With this coloring.

Trying to copy what I’ve perceived as darling, cool, elegant, hip, effective on someone else. Trying to push it onto the confines of me.

Pretending again that cookie-cutter approaches will yield a custom fit. Ignoring the individual nuances of my complexion, my build, my budget.

It happens in dressing rooms. It happens when I’m trolling online message boards and blog feeds. More significantly, it happens relationally. In my faith. In my marriage. In my work and home life.

And, gulp, in raising my kids.

Confusing inspiration with impersonation.

From the conversations I have with women, I realize many of us share the same conundrum. Whose life am I living? The one God destined for me? Or one that I’ve built from a pile of comparison? What about these children I’m raising? Am I raising them according to who God has designed them to be … or who others think they should be?

We want to walk in wisdom. We seek great examples. We want to learn.

But then something shifts. And we veer into a forgery, attempting to live a life that’s not our own. The line between gathering and applying wisdom versus falling into retrograde copycatting is a fragile one.

I can be tempted to compare my kids, my work or my marriage with other people’s, feeling like I come up short. But nobody has ever raised my kids before. No one but my husband and I have conducted this particular marriage. No one but God and I walk the path He has for me. I can learn from others, and I can even gain wisdom, but their lives are not mine to copy.

Because my life isn’t meant to be a copy.

If comparison is the thief of joy, it is also the mortal enemy of originality. Because our creative, imaginative God doesn’t bind us in cookie-cutter patterns. He is an eternal author, writing fresh narratives over each of His kids’ lives. I adore the way Eugene Peterson puts our key verse in The Message version: “… we will not compare ourselves with each other … Each of us is an original” (Galatians 5:26).

Take courage with me in that amazing thought. We have much greater things to be doing than sizing ourselves up. Or down. Or measuring our kids against the neighbors’.

We are bespoke by what He spoke.

I read about a man who desperately wanted to be a great painter. He admired the great masters of the art. He studied their techniques, their color combinations, their subject matters. But instead of taking those lessons and applying them to creating masterpieces of his own, he became a prolific art forger.

He copied.

And was caught.

Why would someone with such incredible talent — who could emulate the greatest painters of the age — reduce that to become a human Xerox machine with a paintbrush?

But then again, why do I?

Why do we?

Because … it’s scary to lean into the originalities God infuses into us. It’s a launch into the unknown. When we live as originals — when we raise originals — we’re reminded that living life is sometimes a wild and unpredictable ride. We often prefer predictable patterns over leaning into the fresh story God is weaving.

But we can choose courage over copy.

Today, let’s compose. Let’s celebrate. Let’s see what God will do when we stop comparing and start embracing that God loves to do new things.

In each of us.

Heavenly Father, thank You for infusing fresh creativity into the making of each of Your kids. I praise You for the originalities You place in each of Your children. Help me not to cheapen Your original work with a comparison copy. Give me courage to live as Your unique child, to raise the unique children You’ve given me and not compare myself to others. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

TRUTH FOR TODAY:
Isaiah 43:19a, “See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it?” (NIV)

RELATED RESOURCES:
Find insight and encouragement for identifying and celebrating the originality in your child and yourself in Julie Lyles Carr’s new book, Raising an Original: Parenting Each Child According to Their Unique God-Given Temperament.

CONNECT:
Enter to WIN a copy of Raising an Original by Julie Lyles Carr. In celebration of this book, Julie’s publisher is giving away 5 copies! Enter to win by leaving a comment here. {We’ll randomly select 5 winners and email notifications to each one by Monday, November 21.}

What if there’s something better on the other side of “normal”? Check out Julie’s book trailer!

REFLECT AND RESPOND:
Our culture and our church communities often encourage and expect copycat approaches in everything from parenting to fads to faith. What is an area of your life right now that is a copy? What is one thing you could do today that honors the originality God placed in you?

© 2016 by Julie Lyles Carr. All rights reserved.

Proverbs 31 Ministries thanks Zondervan for their sponsorship of today’s devotion.

Click here to view our policy on 3rd party links.

Categories:
Would you like your picture to show up next to your comment? Click here for instructions.

Visit Gravatar.com and create a free account with the email address you use to leave comments on blogs and other websites. Upload the picture you want associated with that email address and you're all set!

Comments

  1. Great post! I would love to win a copy of this book. This is an area the enemy tries to ensnare me in as a mother. I need to remember that I am raising a child of God regardless of what the world thinks.

  2. wow am so touched by this message. God bless you. Today I woke up feeling inadequate due to circumstances in my life that have had me thinking that am not good enough. But this message has reminded me that God created me in his image as a unique being and there can never be another like me. I pray he grants me his strength and holy spirit to constantly remind me of this when i fall into the trap of comparison. Glory be to his holy name!

  3. Ohhh thus definitely hits home.

  4. Hi Julie, what a beautiful message. thank you. Bless you

  5. Valerie Holmes says:

    A battle I have long fought. Sure don’t want it for my kids. Would love to read this book. Thanks Julie.

  6. Thank you for the encouragement, and the reminder to trust God with our (his!) children.

  7. Thank you for the encouraging write up.. truly it’s so easy to feel defeated and discouraged when we compare ourselves to others or our kids with others’.. it’s so liberating to know that God has made all of us differently and we can celebrate the uniqueness..

  8. Would love this book as we try to raise 3 kids in this world… yes, every household has different rules.

  9. I’m inspired by your devotional and would love the guidance of your book with the backing of His word. I’m newly divorced and a mother of three. I desire and require His guidance in all areas of my life.

  10. becky curtis says:

    This book would be an amazing gift for my friend who struggles with what other people think of her, what other mums think of her parenting and her kids, how her kids compare to other kids etc etc. It’s been a life long battle for her and it’s time she realised that she, her life, her marriage, her kids are unique and that the only standard we should measure ourselves against is God’s, remembering what Jesus did for us, why he did it and what that means for us! What an amazing God we have. What a mighty saviour! Amen!

  11. Jennifer Yeates says:

    What a beautiful reminder as I often struggle with feeling like the odd ball. Patenting differently from most of my peers, trying my best to choose connection, not comparing my children even to each other or friends and focusing instead on what they seem to need individually. Thank you Lord for the needed encouragement!

  12. Debbie Snead says:

    Thanks for sharing this devotional. It is just what I needed to hear, because we all struggle with it. I would love to read your book and share it with my daughter.

  13. Trish evans says:

    As a mom of a 15, 12 and 10 year old, I see this tendency in myself more and more. It’s so easy to allow the enemy to slip in and say, ” you are not as fit as so and so.” Or ” your friend cooks a hot lunch everyday for her family and your family just has to survive on its own.” I notice then that I’m giving an awful lot of authority to my enemy rather than my father.

  14. This was just the devo I needed. I am guilty of comparing myself and my family with others. Thank you for the reminder that God has a perfect unique design for each of us.

  15. Thank you for this article. It really touched something in me. Thank you God for sending this message to me and helping me realize how much I needed to hear it.

  16. Dawn Dorsey says:

    My dad has told others in the family that he does not agree with how we are raising our boys… He has said we are bad parents who don’t do things we shoud do. BUT GOD, is training us on the job with our boys. God is teaching us along the way how to be the parents He has created us to be!
    I would love a copy of this book to remind me that God has a plan, bigger than our own, for our children, and for us as their parents.

  17. Shelley Gardner says:

    I would love this book!

  18. Beautifully written Julie. I have compared myself to others all my life and unfortunately my youngest son is doing the same thing. I am trying to get him to replace his negative thoughts with positive ones. The enemy has his own crafty way to get us to think differently about ourselves. My positive words are I am unique and wonderfully made by God. ~Lisa~

  19. Courage over copy is a difficult concept to follow. We have so many people and factors trying to influence what shapes us and our kids that it’s hard to lead them to the best versions of themselves.

  20. Thanks for the great and timely post today. I am going through a season of feeling inadequate for the parenting task that God has given me! I know that this isn’t true, that God equips me for this challenge, and I am blessed beyond measure by my wonderful children. But I do find it hard! By 6pm my patience has been spread about as thin as it will go, and I hear snappy responses that I don’t want to give coming out of my mouth. I am praying for more of God’s Spirit-given fruits of patience, love and kindness, and I confess I do compare myself to other mums I know and imagine that they are far more patient and understanding with their children than I am, and I feel guilty and that I am failing. I would love a copy of your book. Thanks again.

  21. Taylor Wilson says:

    This book would be a blessing! I have 2 children and one on the way that will be here in about 2 weeks! My husband and I are definitely needing some encouragement and support right now with how to raise our children into the way God has designed them and not by how we want them to be!
    Happy Thanksgiving!!! 🙏🏼😊

  22. Raising two beautiful originals

  23. So true, Julie. Last night at prayer meeting, a wise old saint prayed, “Lord, I don’t want to go through life singing, ‘I did it my way.'” No, we want to live so that Gad says to us, “You did it my way.”

  24. Thank you for sharing the article and I would be most appreciative if honored to receive your book. The title hits home with me my struggle started in 2012 since then God has taken me through a tunnel with new light to appreciate what’s in front of me not what I hope for it to be. Children are a precious gift from God he is holding me accountable for my actions.

  25. Deborah Duru says:

    Thank you for this great post. In times like ours when being clone of another is on the rampage. Am grateful to God that you’ve reminded me of his original design. Thank you so much!

  26. Thank you for the reminder. We often tell our kids not to follow the crowd, but often forget to heed our own advice. Thank you for reminding us that Giod has designed us and he doesn’t make mistakes!! Your message was a blessing. May God continue to bless you.

  27. Amen, amen, amen, and amen! Father God, help us, help me to embrace your fresh originality and put away predictable patterns. Sigh.

  28. Gretchen Scoleri says:

    Love this devotional! The book sounds awesome!

  29. Love this….. “Whose life am I living? The one God destined for me? Or one that I’ve built from a pile of comparison? What about these children I’m raising? Am I raising them according to who God has designed them to be … or who others think they should be?” Writing it out, hanging on fridge!

  30. Marissa Grant says:

    During this season of my life, I find myself comparing my circumstances to my ex-boyfriend. After breaking up with him a month ago, I still feel the hurt and rejection. I compare how my life seems to be a complete mess while his seems to be right on track. I moved abroad to study near him but then un-enrolled from the program shortly after because I realized I was doing it for us but not for myself and he was the wrong guy for me. Although I’m so thankful God helped me see this, I still feel myself comparing how I completely changed my life for him and now feel I’m in a chaotic state while he is still doing exactly what he always planned.
    Reading this devotion was a great reminder to stop comparing my life to his. I have to trust that God is working in me and for me during this time. I can see blessings coming from this time because I’m able to spend some priceless moments with my family I may not have oringally had.

    Thank you for the devotion and reminder!

  31. Monique Barnard says:

    Todays word is so appropriate and well timed! I had a good chuckle, because just yesterday I tortured myself by trying on one-piece swimsuits, that looked horrendous and were ill-fitting. I naturally blamed it on my 40 year old body that cant wear bikinis anymore! I then proceeded with this sub-conscious mindset to fetch my six year old who was tired and grumpy and did not appreciate that fact that I took him to a play area without organising a friend. Mommy and me time, was obviously not high on his fun list and then my feeling of rejection set in further, which snow balled into tantrums and ungratefulness…his, not mine and I left feeling broken and devastated and on the verge of tears! Thinking I don’t know how to parent! What have we created!!! But we spoke it out as a family last night and were graced with Gods words and wisdom to heal the situation. And by God’s grace I feel like I qualify to be a mother again today.

  32. Jessica McKamie says:

    Thank you for this reminder!

  33. This message has come at a time I desperately need it. Thank you.

  34. Well said.

  35. Good reminder

  36. Nicole Himmelman says:

    Great message…thank you!

  37. Thank you for this reminder this morning that I am not a cheap copy but a valuable original to God. Such a great reminder for myself but also to speak to my children, they are each a wonderful original made by God!

  38. Thank you for your words of encouragement to be an original. I soaked it up and could not get enough of it. It is so easy to want to pattern our lives by those around us. Everybody has an opinion about what we should do in every area of our lives. For myself I find I don’t fit into a lot of the typical groups even at church. I moved to a small town where everyone grew up with one another. I am the oldest parent at my daugnter’s daycare and one of the oldest parents at church. It is easy to want to try to fit in some way, but it does take courage to be an original. I know there is peace in accepting God’said plan for our lives. This was a great reminder of it.

  39. Such a good reminder for us as parents to encourage our children to embrace their uniqueness.

  40. Would love a copy of this book to help raise my 2 kids according to their unique gifts!

  41. Misty S Brown says:

    I love your insight.

  42. Beautifully written!!! God Bless!!

  43. I would enjoy a copy of the book.

  44. Juli Petree says:

    This would be such a blessing!! My children are teenagers now and I would love to change things before it’s too late! Learning to recognize their unique personalities happened about a year ago for me but learning how to respond is the part I need help with. Time goes so fast!!

  45. Sharon Walker says:

    I receive so much encouragement on a daily basis reading these articles. Thank you for being a vessel for God.

  46. Tabitha King says:

    Before I read this devotional I finished praying for my children and their gifts. I love when the Holy Spirit just gives me exactly what I need in that very moment. My children have a hard time focusing on what they have in front of them and I get frustrated when they try to give up because it’s not easy. I have two children at home and I love them so much. I see so much potential in them and I continue devotions with them daily, praying that they never depart from the teaching. Negativity wants to get in their minds but I try to find encouragement and I hope they get inspired but sometimes they’d rather believe what’s not true. I’m just so thankful that I know it’s not easy but in time God will turn that situation around. I would love to receive any help I can with raising my children. Be blessed!

  47. Thank you so much for this timely reminder!

  48. Christy Saladino says:

    I needed this reminder! Thank you!

  49. Kay Kramer says:

    I have 3 originals as different as can be. I would love a copy of the book.

  50. Such a good reminder that they’re all different

  51. I pray for each of my children to follow God’s path for their lives

  52. I worry about how I am raising my kids everyday and pray constantly that God will help me do my best. Thank you, this read was a blessing.

  53. Donna Ward says:

    What a timely message. I want so much for my boys. Your reminder to not compare, and to focus on Gods unique plan for each one of us was perfect. Thank you!

  54. I really could use some insight and inspiration. I’m raising two 50% of the time as a single mom. I question myself often on how to parent my children better. Sometimes I feel like such a failure. I’m very interested in what your book has to say about each ones individual personalities and how that could guide me to better parenting. Thanks for letting God use you in such a special way.

  55. I love the idea that we are ‘raising an original’, that no other kid on the planet has ever been this one you gave us. Lord help me to be the best parent to each of my originals!!!

  56. Thank you! I am learning so much about my identity in Christ. I would love your book as I think it would help me parent in that mindset.

  57. Very good reminder!

  58. Celeste Jordan says:

    I love this thought! Each one of children have different personalities, interests, and traits. Trying to force them into a cookie cutter mold would hinder the spirit within them that’s calling them to newer and bigger things.

  59. A wonderful reminder! Thank you!

  60. Monica Farabaugh says:

    Thank you for this great reminder. We have been blessed with six healthy and beautiful children and it is easy to get bogged down in the trials of day to day living and parenting. Remembering that God has a purpose for each one of us and that our children are really his children is key to guiding them and watching them blossom into the young adults God created them to be.
    God bless.

  61. Julie Taipalus says:

    Yes God’s orginality! Love it!!!

  62. Always enjoy learning about parenting!

  63. Oh how this hits home for me and I see it written all over my oldest son. He struggles with being who he is, just like I did and sometimes still do. I’m hoping this book will help me help him learn these lessons much earlier in life. Some (way too many) days I’m still learning…

  64. Thank you so much for this reminder! I have 3 unique and spirited children and I often need to be reminded that there is nothing wrong with them marching to the beat of their own drums, just as I do not have to be the perfect mother, just the perfect mother for my children!

  65. Thank you so much. I do find myself comparing my marriage to others. Why not I was never married before. This came at the right moment. God always knows best thanks for writing

  66. Loved this devotional!!! Thank you so much

  67. Timely message and greatly appreciated!

  68. ThAnk you for the reminder.

  69. Such a great reminder! Thank you for this.

  70. Definitely needed this reminder today! I would love to have a copy of this book.

  71. Donna Sanders says:

    What a wonderful reminder. With social media, it is so easy to fall into the trap of comparisons and letting jealousies creep in. We all need to remember to be content with what we have and not to cover what others have. And to certainly let our children be the “one of a kind” treasures they are!! Thank you!

  72. Renee Clemmons says:

    It is hard to raise a child these days. I am working really hard to teach my child these principles to not compare himself to others. Thank you for this devotion, we will read it together later.

  73. Christina Chastain says:

    This was an amazing email to receive. I have 4 children and am also living with a very debilitating disease. I desperately try to be the old me or to be like all the other mom’s but can never do it. And I make excuses for my children because of it. I feel this book would really be an encouragement.

  74. Regina Brooks says:

    Would love to receive a copy for my family!

  75. Becky Gardner says:

    Love this reminder!

  76. This is great encouragement. I have six children and they are all unique created beautifully by God. Our marriage and family are unique as well. God blesses differences as he created us in that way. I’m thankful I don’t have to be the same as others!

  77. Jennifer Lou says:

    And being an example of this to our kids is also important! By God’s grace alone can this be accomplished.

  78. Would love to receive a “copy” of Raisng an original!

  79. Janine Hackshaw says:

    Thank you for reminding us that God has designed our children to be unique and that we need to spend more time understanding and learning about who they are to better support and guide them as they grow and develop.

  80. I was just comparing my marriage to another couple last night. God wanted me to read this today to remind me that I am truly blessed to have my husband and children and to stop the comparing. Message heard loud in clear. Thank you Lord. Amen.

    • Nancy Johnson says:

      Hi Jenny. I am a grandmother and I enjoyed your post. I am trying to help my single daughter to raise her children. Of course being given this chance I am trying hard not to make huge mistakes your book is one that I am going to get. I sort of raised my family with James Dobson. And the book of proverbs I need his help because I had two very strong willed children. That were constinatly pushing every button I had. With his help I learned to draw the line early. With your book I hope to raise these grandchildren in my care to true warriors and individuals that know Gods voice in their life at and earlier time then my children did. Thanks for writing a way to know how. Loving Grandma

  81. I struggle comparing every aspect of my life. Today’s devotion made me realize how much happier of a life I could live if I lived my own original life, Rather than compare it to everyone else around me. Thank you.

  82. Jeana Chandler says:

    I would love to have this book. I have a unique son. I was unable to have children so we adopted a little boy he was 6 months old when we got him.

  83. Erin Graham says:

    What a great message! This one is definitely making me think deep. I’d love to check out the book to continue the critical thinking and figure out what this looks like for my children! Thank you!

  84. Sometimes I do feel a twinge of guilt or comparison when other people tell stories of the “spirituality” of their young children and I compare it to mine. But this article helped me see it from the lens of my children’s personalities and how they were created. They are never going to be exactly like another child in this way. Thank you!

  85. Eric Maust says:

    Something we struggle w raising 4 children. We try to teach each one of them they are unique in Christ and it’s ok to be different, God has a plan for each of them. A daily struggle w school, sports and even their walk. As parents we fight it too…

  86. Laurie Debonnett says:

    Thank you. This is a great reminder to raise our children according to Gods plan & not ours.

  87. I’m very interested in this book… God is good and I’m excited to see a book like this out there.

  88. I would love to read your book.

  89. Heather Hauger says:

    Thank you! Freeing words!

  90. My children definitely are originals.

  91. This really helps me remember that each of us is unique but we are all children of God.

  92. I would love to read this book! I am blessed with two very unique children, different from, each other and many of their peers.

  93. Loved this reminder this morning that I don’t have to compare myself or my kids to others. God made us just like he wants us!

  94. Tiffany Lomu says:

    Praise God for originality! We each have our struggles and successes throughout this journey of life…God fully equips us each step of our path. With that knowledge and trust then we should not be compelled to compare, He equips us for our individual walks…..and….it will work out for our good!

  95. Robbin Jackson says:

    Very much needed devotion for a single mom of two distinctly different boys. Thank you!

  96. Thank you for the reminder! It would be a blessing to be able to read this book

  97. Thank you for this reminder today! I really needed to hear it!

  98. This devotion could not be more timely for me right now. I’ve been really struggling with some of these very issues as we navigate a difficult season with one of our kids. I have to remember that God did make him unique and me and gives us what we need to get through this. Thank-you!

  99. Yolanda Lugo-Montalvo says:

    Love your devotionals. Would love to win your book. Be blessed.

  100. Erica Eggleston says:

    Great read.

  101. My daughters are so very different from one another! I struggle each day with how to celebrate those differences vs getting frustrated bc the same approaches just never seem to work!

  102. Loved the devotion this morning about being an original. Spoke to me about myself and my children. I will definitely be buying the book! Thanks!

  103. Julie, congrats on your new book! You are truly a creative and unique mother who has dared to raise your children God’s way. We look forward to your yearly Christmas card – God’s best to you!
    Jan Bell

  104. Amanda Plesscher says:

    Thank you for this devotion. This book would be a blessing.

  105. I shared this devotional today on my facebook page bc besides myself there are so many mothers and women out there who need these words of encouragement. Thank you so much for writing this! I need to print and read every day!!!!!!

  106. This was shared with me and I think it is a wonderful article!

  107. This was written for me. I so easily fall into the trap of comparison. Thank you.

  108. What an encouragement today’s devotional was- thank you Julie!! I need to remember to pray that verse to not only over my children but myself as well.

  109. Each of my four kids are strikingly different. I think it’s God’s way of keeping me on my toes.

  110. Sarah Nunley says:

    Love this!!

  111. This devotional is just what I needed to read after a challenging week parenting a very strong willed, amazing 8 year old. Thank you!!

  112. These are blessed words for parents and teachers alike. Our earthly standards can be all we see – and unfortunately what our children can default to seeing as well. And this is unfulfilling when we see those messages of “falling short.” I pray today that I and my children can revel in God’s unique craftsmanship of my kids and us all.

  113. What is an area of your life right now that is a copy? What is one thing you could do today that honors the originality God placed in you?

    Here are the thoughts for today’s reflection…

    lately, I am obsessed with makups and beauty products. Scanning through youtube for what’s the latest look, latest beauty products and i even subscribe. There are a few beauty vloggers that i perpetually follow. one of them vlogs about how there family operates from day to day case. their kids are so adorable which made me also want to have my own kids and perhaps my own family because I want to be like her. and let’s go back to makeups and beauty products, the longer I view youtube for what’s the latest trend in beauty, makes my insecurity at its worst feeling envy of these beauty vloggers on how they are gifted original beauty and how they use it for a living.

    sometimes, at the end of the day before I talk to God, I reflect on these things. It’s then that I realized that we all have no choice but to appreciate what we have and what we are cause what we have and what we are are God’s blessings that maybe others still pray.

  114. It’s sad, but I do this, too! And the sad thing is, I think God made a pretty awesome person when He made me!! I’m not bragging on myself, I’m bragging on my Daddy!!! And I am so blessed by the person He made me! Each of us is so fearfully and wonderfully made. I’m studying “temperament”, the way God created us in our mother’s womb. For Him to individually design us according to His unique purpose for us here on earth just blows my mind! And leaves me speechless to His greatness!
    I purpose today to move away from copycatting and draw closer to God and the person He designed me to be! God bless you for this encouragement!!

  115. Lydia howell says:

    I would love to have this book! I can see the different temperaments even in my identical twins.

  116. This is a great message for me this week. My anniversary is Saturday and we do not have the money for a trip or expensive gifts. I have stopped going on Facebook this week because I kept seeing other people’s lives that seem so much more impressive. I know that God made me to be original and made my marriage and parenting to be unique. Thank you for helping me keep that in perspective.

  117. Such a helpful perspective! Thank you! I am grateful for the opportunity to get a free copy of Julie’s new book 🙂

  118. Would love to read this book.

  119. Would love to read this book

  120. Rachel Zazzaro says:

    Thank you Julie for the good reminder.

  121. What a great way to start my morning! I live reading proverbs 31 messages early in the morning while everyone is sleeping and just ask GOd to talk to my thru his word. Amazing message and a lot of work I still need to do.

  122. Sarah Holland says:

    I would love a copy of this book.

  123. This book seems really interesting.

  124. Lori Leonard says:

    Thank you Julie for reminding us that our children are originals and we, as parents, are to raise them according to God’s plan and not everyone else’s plan!

  125. Your message was timely as I have been wrestling with the “why can’t I be like her” thoughts lately. Thank you for reminding me that I am an original and God has many new things waiting for me.

  126. Love this article! I feel like I am not a copy cat but my 12 year old daughter is all about it! It drives me crazy and I feel like I don’t handle it well! Would love to win book for help and guidance in this single parent challenge I face.

  127. Rahel Abebe says:

    Wow, it really hit home.
    Thank you

  128. Thank you for this! Would love to read your book

  129. This devotion spoke to my heart thi’s morning. I would love to read this book.

  130. Mallory Allen says:

    Having 5 kids at home makes it hard to not compare and see the uniqueness. Thank you for this beautiful reminder!

  131. Thank you for this! Would love to read your book.

  132. Thank you. Your words encouraged me. My son has had a challenging year. He got himself expelled in his senior year! Just some bad decision making. As I watched all his senior friends and families posting all the excitement and college plans, etc. I just wept….that was supposed to be me. That was supposed to be him. Why! My son has goals and a strong faith, and so I’ve tried to realize that God has a different path. The ends might be the same , college degree, career (or maybe not). But I have to accept His plan. It’s not the cookie cutter dream.😊

  133. I had a rough time being a mom yesterday. But…God is always faithful and he showed up! This book seems like it could help me in a few areas I need to work on.

  134. Sherry Yoachum says:

    I really would like to read this book as we’re being considered to raise our great nieces and nephew.

  135. Kelly Wagoner says:

    Wow! I can not express the timelyness and power of this amazing devotional. Thank you!

  136. Wow! Just last evening my husband and I had a conversation with our 26 year old daughter who felt like she was disappointing us because she was so different than us. She is a true original. God has such wonderful plans for her!!

  137. I am the mother of 2, now young adult, children. I have struggled with comparison in many of the same areas as all of you have mentioned. My children have both faced issues and made decisions that I would not have made for them, if it were up to me. As we all know, it isn”t up to us, but sometimes it is still difficult to stand back and watch as their lives (and your family’s) are effected by the choices and decisions. I would like to read this book and then pass it on to someone who is there, where I once was as a young mother, trying to allow my children to become the originals that God intended them to be. We are still in this process and I know that God is doing a work, even when the big picture is a bit fuzzy at times.

  138. This book sounds amazing. I’m immersed in helping my daughter raise her son. So immersed that I’m reading parenting books that will give me the tools to discipline and redirect with purpose. I wish these books had been available when I was wrestling with my own children over the things that matter. Teaching them was a matter of survival but there was little guidance given in moving beyond survival to helping them recognize their God-given specialness. I find grandparenting to be much more intentional than parenting. Im looking forward to seeing what gem God has inside my little rough-cut grandson.

    • If I could pass on some loving advice to you (even though you didn’t ask) I would say just be the Grandma and let your daughter be the Mom. God gave us this time to be Grandmas because it is a blessing after raising our own children. It is so easy to step in and take over because we feel it is our responsibility but your daughter is the Mom. She may need your guidance but your Grandchild does not need another Mom. Be blessed with the privilege of being the Grandma.

  139. Great reminder! Great points!

  140. Simply awesome!

  141. I’d love to read this book!

  142. I need to read this! As a mother of four very different personality children.. I understand the struggle. I need to speak blessings into each of their lives.

  143. Thank you for this devotional. Great reminder.

  144. I have 3 daughters with very different temperaments. The first one is a pleaser and wants to do the right thing, the second wants to do her own thing and doesn’t care if she is obeying or not, the third is very laid back and go with the flow! The middle one is hard to parent and a lot of time I think it is because I expect her to be like the oldest, but I know one day her strong willed personality God will use for good! I would LOVE to win a copy of this book to not compare these three beautiful gifts from GOD but to parent them in a way that will build and grow their own uniqueness that is from God!

  145. Raising originals, and being original, in this age is difficult. Your book will bring help and insight.

  146. Thank you for this wonderful devotional. I would love to read the book!

  147. Comparing yourself and your children — especially when you’re struggling with them — is definitely easy to do. I am in the midst of that right now. I have a couple good friends who it doesn’t appear have had much trouble with their kids while I am having one struggle after another with mine. It’s easy to say “what did I do wrong compared to them?” 😔

  148. Wonderful encouragement. Thank you so much and I would love to read your book!

  149. Courtney Benefield says:

    Thank you for sharing the message that I so needed to hear. Raising an original is so difficult, but as God has proven over and over–doing the difficult thing often has magnificent rewards!

  150. Raising three kids with three completely different personalities…..it’s challenging. Thanks for this perspective!

  151. Sounds encouraging…wow, 8 kids! Please sign me up for your drawing.

  152. Stacy Banks says:

    I enjoyed reading the devotional this morning. This is definitely something I struggle with. I certainly don’t want to raise my kids to fit into a cookie cutter mold that I’ve put myself into! I look forward to reading this book!

  153. Thank you for this devotional!

  154. Maggie Diaz says:

    Thank-you for sharing the unique talent that God has given you. I’m eager to read this one!

  155. Lori Maples says:

    I relate to your article in raising kids right. 😎I am raising my granddaughter and have since she was a baby, she is now ten. I tend to wonder am I raising her right and then I always see or hear God letting me know she’s fine and I’m doing fine. I thank God for those confirmations and his will.I trust in him and believe, he is the best father we both can have.

  156. In this world where everyone wants their child to be exceptional at everything, it is good to remember that each child has their own individual God-given abilities, talents and strengths. Today’s devotional is a good reminder that it is our job as parents to help them learn to seek God in what He has for their lives.

  157. Really enjoyed your devotion this morning. I greatly needed that reminder of allowing my children (and myself) to be “original,” to be who God created them to be.

  158. I like the way you speak. Most commentaries on God tend to be a little airy, pie in the sky.
    This struck a chord and had some very good insights and down to earth speak.
    Simple and effective.

  159. I definitely need this reminder today. In an effort to define & understand my boys, I do compare them to other people I know. But I have to keep reminding myself that though we may call them our mini-me’s, they are not like anyone the world has ever known.

  160. When we first became parents, we had dreams for all of our children, the paths they would take, etc. Your words are a great reminder that we are not raising cookie cutter children, we are raising unique gifts from God and have to allow his lead on their talents and the direction they will go. Look forward to reading your book.

  161. Definitely spoke to me. Especially as a mother I feel it’s so easy to start comparing ourselves.

  162. Great reminder. With one child in college, a senior and a sophomore at home this devotion reminds me that they should not compare as the world does but look to the Lord for worth in everything .

  163. Yes! Just yes!

  164. This message touched my heart! I am encouraged and inspired to share with my children today to celebrate their originality.

  165. I will be sharing with all the mothers I know! Thank You!

  166. This is very timely. Would love the book!

  167. This was exactly the message God had for me this morning. “But we can choose courage over copy.” And today, I will. Thank you.

  168. I have two amazing children. Sometimes it is hard not to compare but I need to remember God makes us all unique

  169. Bethany Marker says:

    God is doing many new things in my life. Would love a copy of the book to read along the journey!

  170. This message is so true every time I read it. The world needs more originality, more people to think outside of the box so we can help not just out families but making world changing impacts by bringeho God created us to be.

  171. Megan Peterson says:

    Needed to read this today, what a powerful message!

  172. Amanda Newlin says:

    Thank you for sharing this! God knew I needed it today!!

  173. My kiddos are each so different. Thank you for the reminder that God chose their qualities on purpose.

  174. Amanda Trople says:

    I tend to try & imitate what others have in their lives. Not necessarily a style or clothing because I dress & look the way I do, but I want a nice house with updated things. I also try to imitate the faith of others. I want the kind of relationship they have with God because they seem so happy & free.

    I think this book would be amazing because I am in the comparison trap & need to escape & be the one & only me.

  175. Thank you so much of this reminder. In this world of social media, it is so much easier to look at other’s lives and think that yours is falling short – especially when it comes to children. All 3 of my children have been born with some type of birth defect that require multiple surgeries. It’s so easy for me to sink into negative thought like why me, why my children, why couldn’t they just be normal. But deep down, I know that God has a unique plan for each one of them and He has already allowed us to encourage others through our story. That gives me strength and is a reminder that there is such a bigger story than my own and God is the author of it all.

  176. Leann Vandemark says:

    Loved the devotion and thoughts on parenting. Would love a copy of the book.

  177. My kids are grown and the comparison still continues. What you said about God loving to do new things was exactly what I needed to hear. His ways are new every morning. Thank you for this reminder.

  178. Stephanie Smith says:

    I would love to have a copy of this book.

  179. Kathy Abad says:

    I would love to win a copy of this book. Raising a preteen is challenging at times, asking her not to conform to the ways of the world when it is more cool to copy what everyone is singing, damaging, and doing than to be an original.

  180. As a mom of 4 remembering that I’m raising individuals is a good reminder. So much chaos in a big family sometimes u just want everyone cookie cutter so it’s easier. But my 4 are anything but cookie cutter- 1 is educationally gifted, another severely disabled and non- verbal, then my socialite and finally my dare devil. Sigh….. Thank you Lord for these 4 treasures 😊

  181. I have 4 biological children and usually at least one foster baby with us. At times I have found myself trying to make them all fit same mold. I would love to hear somebody else’s thoughts on how to leave them all unique

  182. Melinda Funk says:

    Thank you so much for reminding me today that I don’t have to try to be someone else. I am an original and that is a good thing. I feel really challenged to look deeply into my life to see the areas that I’m trying to copy someone else.

  183. Linda Beaven says:

    Love this article. I have 9 Grandchildren and they are each uniquely gifted. What a joy to watch their gifts develope.

  184. My friend and I recently started a new position at work. I find myself comparing my work with my friend’s who seems to be meeting the stats that are expected of our position nicely. My supervisor keeps telling me that it takes time to find my groove but I keep stressing over the fact that I just haven’t made it like my friend. Thanks for reminding me that I am not to be a copy of someone else, that I am God’s unique individual and I just need to trust in His timing. Although your devotional brought kids into the mix and mine are grown, your message still spoke to my heart as if it were meant for me. I am grateful for your insight,

  185. This book sounds like exactly what I need to read right now. I’m in the thick of raising four kiddos (8, 6, 6, 3) – we are a full-time ministry family and sometimes fall into worrying about the scrutiny from those who feel as if our kiddos should be perfect. This devotional was a great reminder, and I plan to read the book as well!

  186. I loved reading this. I have 3 children and am super proud and live each one unconditionally. I am constantly thinking how much I appreciate their originality. It’s so easy to forget that is exactly how our Father sees each of us, thank you for the reminder this morning. This is such a great reminder to start the day.

  187. Shireen Wright says:

    Thank you for this post! Amen to comparison robbing our joy!
    I would LOVE a copy of your book!

  188. What a great reminder! It is so hard in today’s society not to compare, but we need to remember who made us. God has great plans for each of us.

  189. Children are a blessing

  190. I’d love to read this book!

  191. Would love to win a copy of this book!

  192. Katie Curry says:

    I’d love to learn deeper about being one of God’s originals.

  193. Jodi Flory says:

    Thanks for this great reminder! Happy God made each of us an original! I would love a copy of your book! 🙂

  194. I love this devotion because it goes right along with my life. I have 7 children, 3 of which I gave birth to and 2 step-children that came to live with us fulltime when they were very young, and then several years ago we adopted 2 little girls who are half-sisters. The first 5 are all grown and out on their own and the last 2 are only 7 and 5 years old. One thing that I was concerned about when we gained custody of my two step children was that I would be able to let them know that I loved them and not show any difference in them versus the ones I gave birth to. Especially my stepdaughter because she and my biological daughter are only 2 weeks apart in age. We are truly a modern day Brady Bunch lol. But I can honestly say that all of my children are uniquely different and I always encouraged them to embrace that. My stepdaughter was very shy and withdrawn and had self-esteem issues that were instilled by her biological mom and she seemed terrified to even walk into a room. But I continued to work with her and love her, and one day I passed by her room and heard her singing when she was 8 years old and I was stunned…she had an amazing singing voice. I walked in her room and she stopped and I asked her to sing for me and she did and I told her right there that she would have to claim what God had given her. Today she is 21 and has won many singing competitions. I cry each time I go to hear her sing because I remember this shy little girl afraid of being noticed standing proud and wowing an audience with her God given voice and I am full of thankfulness. All of my children have different personalities that make them all special. My daughter and my stepdaughter that I was afraid would not get along, are both 21 and the BEST of friends. They are attached at the hip. All of my boys are strong and independent but all are family oriented and they too are all friends and hang out at each other’s homes. The two little ones that are here at home are like night and day even though they are half sisters. The 7 year old is quiet and quirky with an artsy personality, and the 5 year old has such a strong spirit but with a heart of gold. I am truly blessed by God.

  195. This devotion is so beautifully written! This is a vital message for us in a world that has comparisons and templates at the ready with constant news and social media feeds. “Because… It’s scary to lean into the originalities God infuses into us. It’s a launch into the unknown”. I hear this as a reminder that we are unique in our spiritual gifts and are called to develop and use them in our faith journey. This is great inspiration for both my faith life and professional work.

  196. Heidi Mohney says:

    Wow…again a powerful devotional truth…..that I sincerely believe we women need to believe, hold to, and walk in this truth….you are original, one of a kind, special…. It amazing the way the devotional came today ….Gods perfect timing. Would live a copy, and share it with others

  197. Speaking of originality….this quick Devo is definitely one of a kind! It is something I must meditate on, for myself, and all my life has become. It helps me to remove the mental burden and pressure to fit in, just to “fit in”, and encourages me to explore the freedom God has given me in my individual live and the life of MY family. Thank you!!!

  198. Great timing on this devotion! I’ve been praying about the best way to raise my children while respecting and encouraging who they are, help them see the talents God gave them, and accept themselves for the way God made them rather than focus on society’s current idea on what’s “good”, “perfect”, and “beautiful” because that’s constantly changing and we never measure up
    And if we so, it’s for a short amount of time and still feels us leaving empty when it’s over.

  199. Ashley M DeClue says:

    Normal is just a cycle on the dryer, yet it’s something we still seek and long for in this world. My son and I were just reading an Amelia Bedelia book yesterday about this exact thing, where a thief was using his talent for forgery. Yet, what a great comparison that we do the same in our own lives.

  200. Ginny Harrison says:

    Often feel like I am very much raising originals. Would love to read the wisdom in this book on how to keep them that way!

  201. Amy Reinford says:

    Today’s encouragement seemed to come special delivery straight from God! In the beginning of the year I asked God for one word for this year from my pastor’s prompting. That word was new. And the scripture that came to mind was, “behold I make all things new”, from Revelation 21. I heard the same thread in today’s reference to Isaiah 43:9. I also have Gal. 5:23 on my cabinet to remind me that God Had more than comparison for me! I thank him for the work he is doing in my heart to free me from the old and continue creating the “new” every day!

  202. Wow! Just what I needed to hear for myself n my family. Thanks♥️Cookie cutter approaches will not yield a custom fit. I’m an original !

  203. What a timely message! Being the mother of 2 young daughters, I find myself struggling with comparison quite frequently. Comparison with other mothers, comparison between my two children. Thank you for the reminder to take a step back and let their (and my) originality shine through!

  204. Susan Lyons says:

    I read this at just the right time. Comparison steals joy, and while I try not to compare the enemy seems to place circumstances of comparison in my path continually. I would love a copy of Julie’s book.

  205. Great message that we all need to hear!

  206. Catherine beeler says:

    I was a single mom with four children. Three boys one daughter. I knew my children were different, and needed different things from me. struggling financially spiritually emotionally. Struggling financially spiritually emotionally. Trying to raise my children the right way Not knowing the right things to do and say. not knowing the right things to do and say. I lost my second oldest child and 207 he was 34 years old due to a motorcycle accident. I knew he needed something more from me. I feel my oldest son has so many insecurities I would like to give them this book to help himself And his three children.

  207. Thank you for sharing the word today, my heart has been burden by trying to be someone else and comparing my life with someone else, thank you for reminding me that God made us in his image and I am who he created.

  208. Gloria Sheff says:

    Thank you for your devotion. I fully agree, I’ve always said God hand picks us to raise our children. All children are different that’s why it’s so important that they are raised differently. As long as God is the center of the family that is all that needs to be copied.

  209. As always, God whispers to me and guides me where I need to go. This morning, it was to you. I need the reminder that MY children are HIS children. They must live according to His plan, not mine. Thank you for sharing!

  210. Thank you. I need to read this every day!

  211. Angela Keen says:

    Great devotional, a great reminder each of us are unique.

  212. Lisa stewart says:

    Having a hard time in my marriage. Listening and reading God’s word. My 20 year old son against me all the way. So weary at this point in my life. His dad is out of town hunting (supposedly) but have seen facebook pics otherwise. Please help me AND my son to see the TRUTH!

  213. Christine Barnes says:

    This is such a great truth for each of us individually and in our role as parents! Thank you!

  214. I would love to have a copy of this book for my daughter as she is raising my granddaughter. I love the notion of raising her as her original self.

  215. Diane Butler says:

    Would love to read your book! I have 4 kids, 17, 12, 7, and 6. Raising to be children who honor God and not to conform to this world. It’s hard but easier with God on our side.

  216. I constantly compare myself with others, especially when it comes to parenting. I would love to read this book!

  217. This book sounds great! I would love to win it!

  218. I so needed this today. At work I try to be a perfectionist and will take extra time proofing documents and making sure everything is just right. I try to go above and beyond in all areas of my job but in doing so I can sometimes get behind. I have a coworker who is Never behind in her work and always has a clean desk. This is where my struggle comes in. I inevitably compare myself with her and see how clean her desk is and think mine should be too. It can be really frustrating. This verse today has my name written all over it!! Thank you God for knowing your people would need this message and thank you P31 for reminding me of it 💜. God bless 🙏🏻

  219. Mary Swihart says:

    It’s so difficult in today’s society to not compare yourself or measure yourself/family. Thank you for this devotion, it was just what I needed this morning. We are all his masterpieces. Would love to read this book

  220. James malcolm says:

    This is a great reminder of my brain. I have and struggle with this daily….all day. Please pray for me.

  221. Cheri Bunch says:

    What a great word! Thank you for sharing! I would love to read more!

    Blessings,
    Cheri

  222. Courtney Mooring says:

    What a wonderful word this morning. I loved this piece by Julie Lyles Carr and would love to read her book!

  223. James malcolm says:

    I have 5 adopted kids

  224. Michelle W says:

    Excited to read this boon

  225. The idea of a copycat Christian challenges my heart so deeply, it causes me to ponder the idea that God loves us all exactly the way we are, even when we are chosen for different purposes. I often think I am less than other believers because I am not the same as them, not as grand or as holy. Thank goodness God shed His grace on me too.

  226. Thanks so much for your devotion this morning! I would love a copy of your book. Not to copy you, but to learn from your wisdom. Thanks!!

  227. joy alferink says:

    Raising each child in the way he or she should go is difficult, when my own childhood was spent scraping around trying to be like the “select few”! Thanks for the good word.

  228. Tracey Wheeler says:

    I enjoyed reading this devotion and all of the replies. Raising 4 daughters for the last 19 years has been challenging and I find myself comparing not only my marriage, my children and myself. Always striving to be the best at everything and failing miserably until I remember the Lord made me in his own image and unique and for a purpose. I am interested in reading the book as I know it always gives new perspectives and help.

  229. This book would be s blessing for my friend!

  230. ♡ this!

  231. Thank you for the devotion and opportunity to receive the book. Please enter me in the drawing to receive the book.

  232. Jill McKinley says:

    Excited to read this book! I have 7 kids with 7 very different personalities. They keep me on my toes and on the move!

  233. A great post with a great message–one we need to be reminded of often.
    Your book sounds like a helpful tool in this area of comparisons. It would be great
    to have a copy to read and then share with other moms who face the same challenge.

  234. Thank you for that word. I needed to hear that today as I raise my ‘original’ 10 year old as God intended xx

  235. For many years I tried to raise my child ” perfectly,” ha ha did my Jesus have to teach me. With a brilliant mind but a strong bent towards the arts she can create through her poetry, art and dance what God did not bless me with. I still personally struggle with this. I am thankful for the words in this post that remind me of God’s Sovereignty and unique detailed style present in each of us. I mentor other women who do the same comparison game. This book would help me immensely to remind them of how to raise God’s original masterpiece! Thank you

  236. Sarah Hartzog says:

    As a grandparent I see my children struggle with raising “original” children. In today’s society we expect certain behaviors from our little ones and when we don’t receive it we begin to label them with one of the thousands of “syndromes” learned professionals have come up with. What I see is a child being what children have always been. I grow so weary of behavior explanations. I see panic and fear and frustration in the parent’s eyes. I would love to read this book and then pass it on to the parent children that I love.

  237. Thank you for your wonderful words of encouragement this morning! I needed the reminder that God wants me to raise purposeful kid, not perfect kids! I’m excited to read your book and I’m looking forward to the wisdom it imparts!

  238. Great blog! This helped me not just with raising my 4 different children, but also with my business. Comparison is definitely dangerous. We are all unique in every way. Thanks

  239. Wow thank you for writing straight to my heart. I’m in a prayer group that prays this over our community weekly. I can’t wait to share with them.

  240. This is a great reminder for me today!

  241. So encouraging! Just what I needed today!! Thank you

  242. I try so hard to “raise originals”.

  243. I would absolutely love to win this book! One of my mom’s biggest frustrations with me is that I’m constantly comparing my shortcomings against others’ perceived perfections. It leaves me feeling sad and depressed. Thank you for this great post today. I truly needed it. God bless.

  244. These words of encouragement were just the words God used to remind me that he created me for a purpose. And because I am unique in my purpose, I am to raise my kids uniquely according to God’s unique standards. Your words of encouragement has Empowered me to step out courageously no matter what the unknown might be. God bless you abundantly and blessing your ministry.

  245. Eunice Eubanks says:

    My son always tells me, “Who does that?”, and I so love just the thought that I am doing something no one else does. I use that question to reinforce the fact that I am not trying to do what everyone else does. . .but what makes me unique and simply me. And I use those moments to encourage him to be an original. I love this message. Thanks for sharing it. May we all be blessed in our uniqueness and embrace the uniqueness of others.

  246. Thank you for a wonderful devotional today!

  247. Liza Gbelee says:

    I absolutely needed to hear this today! You are so right in that God designed each of us with unique personalities, and each of us has such an amazing story that only God in His sovereignty is writing! Well written!

  248. I would love to read this book, I usually don’t focus on my children with the books i choose. I usually figure I have enough work on myself to do and I will focus on trying to be a good enough example. But this message resonated with me as I do have a daily struggle with comparisons, and surely my children witness this.

  249. Thank you for your words of encouragement today. It is always good to be reminded that we are fearfully and wonderfully made, and that God has a unique plan for our individual lives.

  250. I was just talking about needing this train of thought, with a friend yesterday. I think I could gain a lot from reading this book!!

  251. What a great reminder for today!

  252. Christina White says:

    I am my worst enemy when it comes to raising my kids. I think I expect too much of them so young and then sometimes I feel like I don’t give them enough credit to make their own mistakes and learn from them. I’m trying to lead by example and raise them in a firm but loving way. I’m also trying to instill a love for God in their lives. I’m just afraid I’m doing it all wrong.

  253. Andrea D. Andris says:

    I would love to have a copy of your new book. Thanks for the encouragement!!

  254. Rachel Storey says:

    This sounds like a book that would be so helpful for me. I have 2 boys and while they have the same interests their temperaments are completely different and the youngest has me in tears quite often. I’ve been praying for guidance and help so maybe this is exactly what I need!

  255. This message was so timely and extremely meaningful. Thank you!

  256. Thank you for challenging me to be my unique self. It does take an extreme amount of courage to step out of the known into the unknown in raising our kids. Trusting God to be the center of that in our lives is so important and sometimes overlooked by our own control. Thank you for the message today with our kids, this is never easy to not be the “Soccer” mom for our kids. Our children are unique and beautiful in all their gifts. My middle son who is also a teenager, seeks and desires God, his heart so pure, asks to show up, go to church Sunday, Sunday night and Wednesday is an example to our whole family that anyone, any age can follow and be disciplined to follow Christ. I want to be more like my son in so many ways.

  257. Christine Cabrera says:

    This sounds like a fantastic book. We are all originals so we do we promote the copying of others? Do we want to develop kids that are only followers?

  258. This devotional really struck home. I recently quit my job as an elementary school teacher for over a decade to peruse my career in being a wife & mom. It is so easy to fall into conforming instead of transforming into God’s original plan. I need to remember, so I wrote it down and hung it in my kitchen for all of us to read, digest, and transpose within ourselves:: “We are bespoke by what He spoke.”

    Thank you for blessing me today. Instead of looking at my husband through his battles with a traumatic brain injury that he tries to fix with alcohol, my teenage daughter that is facing meeting a neurosurgeon next week, my teenage son with chronic migraines, or my youngest with severe ADHD and conduct disorder… I need to see them all through the originality God has blessed them with. Through trials we gain hope… hope for healing, for reaching lost through our testimony, and for transformation.
    2Corinthians 4:8
    We are pressed on every side by troubles, but we are not crushed. We are perplexed, but not driven to despair.
    Shawna

  259. I love this truth! No one else has raised my kids, no one else has been in my marriage- let God guide us and we won’t fail!

  260. I am SO blessed reading this and being reminded that I am raising 4 Original works of Art and I too am original. Even grown ups too need this reminder that we are unique and not meant to emulate others even if we do look up to them. Your book would be a blessing to me.

  261. Lots to think about. Praying God will give me the courage to be authentic.

  262. This would be a great book for every parent and grandparent! In today’s world we need to raise originals who know and love the Lord Jesus.

  263. Elizabeth Aguilar says:

    Thank you Lord for reminding me that my children are unique and hand crafted by you Lord! Help me to delight in their differences and not compare my family to others. Amen!

  264. U was reading along thinking what a nice reminder until I go to “Am I raising them according to who God has designed them to be … or who others think they should be?” That was where God tapped me on the shoulder. Thank you SO much for this time to sit and let this soak in…before they are awake, and know that I will approach this day differently.

  265. Great message! In such a competitive world today, it seems like everything is a competition! Thanks for the reminder that God doesn’t expect all of us to be the same, instead he expects us to use our uniqueness to benefit not only our own families, but others in our church families as well!

  266. Oh my goodness! You have no idea how much that book is needed 🙂

  267. KETINA KENNEDY says:

    This is what I call a keeper! I will keep this devotion to read over and over again! Thank you.

  268. What a wonderful perspective on comparison! Thank you for bringing it to our attention!

  269. My son is definitely an original! Today’s devotion spoke to so many insecurities that I battle with trying to be someone I’m not.

  270. Mary Noggle says:

    I wish this had been available when I was raising my kids but I have 6 grandkids this may help me support😊

  271. Kelly Egan says:

    Sounds like a great book!

  272. Thanks, much needed. It is so easy to feel wrong when we are just different.

  273. I try to be the woman I believe God has called me to be. I can honestly say that nothing about me is copycat, not even my parenting. I allow my grandson to be himself while enjoying him to do his best. After teaching for a number of years, I have learned that no two people are the same, not even twins. The are no copycats in God..just wonderfully created in his image.

  274. Thank you! I had just been telling a friend that I think my lack of contentedness often is a result of my expectations for my family dynamics/activities not panning out. This reminded me yet again that God yearns for my life to bring Him glory, and that He has designed me to do that in a way that is uniquely different from any of His other children. I have three children, and I don’t expect them to look and act alike, so why do I sometimes try to make my family look and act like others? Well, It’s easier to copy something I can see than to seek my unique path. I lack trust, plain and simple.

  275. This devotional was just what I needed today.

  276. Jejeola Talabi says:

    What an insight! Today’s fellowship hour has opened my eyes to see the wonderful truths in the WORD and has brought peace to my mind. I am now able to confidently pursue my dreams as inspired and led by the Spirit and not In the way others are pursuing theirs–even where they appear similar like raising children or using my God given talent. A relief indeed Thanks be to God. May He continue to increase your Ministry to the glory of His name. Amen

  277. Connie Moore says:

    We have a blended family with four kids all comparing themselves to each other and the world. It’s super hard with society these days. They are not allowed to participate in social media for these very reasons. Today’s devotion was great and the timing was perfect for what we are going through. Thank you!

  278. Toni Van Drunen says:

    This was a very interesting topic would love to read this book!

  279. Christy Watson says:

    I needed this today. Too often I compare myself with others and try to “measure up” to what I think is admirable. By doing this I become dissatisfied and ungrateful for who God has made me to be and instead I try to become somebody else.

  280. This was the most spot on devotional for me today!!! I was praying desperately last night about my kids and how “I” was going to be the “perfect” mom and raise Godly children. I started praying to God to give me direction. How do I do this? God is so AWESOME! I’m currently in the OBS bible study Wait and See and I’m learning to let go and Let God. It’s hard because I have to control EVERYTHING! It’s my safety then I know the outcome…the final story because I’m writing it. But that is not what God wants. He wants us to turn to HIM. Recently my husband and I made a HUGE decision without talking to God. Now we’re in it. And I’ve got to let go and give the reigns to God. I’m in the moment and praying hard that God takes the situation and does his will. And with the many changes that came with this decision I lost the focus of God. And more importantly what God wants for my little ones. As a working mom just want to do the right things and make sure my kiddos are influenced the way God wants them to grow. Thank you for this devotional it came at the best time. I’m praying hard and he’s giving me the direction I need.

  281. Thank you for this post. I am raising a son who is 14 now. Sometimes I do forget that my ideas, or thoughts may not be gods thoughts, or plans. While I know god will do a mighty work in my son & he is an original & uniquely made, it can be frustrating in a world that sees & wants all kids to be the same.

  282. I would love to read this book. I think we all need to be reminded that we ARE enough…. Just the way we are!

  283. Julie: GREAT writing! GREAT message! Each of us (each in And not yet in His Kingdom) are gems, whether we resemble many others OR if created to be unique from most everyone. A purpose, a rare gem and Loved by Him (as we should Love one another! – Matthew 22:37-40). Thank you! Blessings back at ya!

  284. I would love a copy of this book. I struggle with my son who has anxiety and always think that I am doing something wrong because of his constant defiance. God made him smart and I know He will use that for good, I just want God to remind me that I am doing my best every day.

  285. I feel like in a world of social media and Facebook it’s easy to want something more than your life provides and want to copy or feel jealous. I take monthly Facebook breaks especially when I feel my wants and needs going away from what God wants and God needs! Great message!

  286. Susan corralez says:

    Great post at just the right time for my life.

  287. Anne Julian says:

    What an idea ! We grandmothers realize that each child is unique and special. after raising 3 daughters I know that parents can lay a foundation for them, but they build their own houses on that foundation.

  288. Would love a chance to win Raising an original. Good bless!

  289. Love this piece. Much of my life has been spent thinking I am different, I didn’t fit in, I wasn’t like everyone else, an outsider, etc. It has taken a long time for me to accept that I am who God made me to be and that He created me to be uniquely me. Not until I accepted Christ in my heart and started reading and applying the Word of God did I come to realize I am His daughter, his masterpiece, that he created me as I am. And he LOVES ME..

  290. Thanks for the message this morning:) here’s to being an original and raising our own unique originals!

  291. Christina Wiens says:

    I would love a copy of this book!

  292. Thank you for your message.

  293. It is so easy to fall into comparing ourselves to others. Thanks for the reminder that God creates each of us as a unique work or art!

  294. Mary Wuydts says:

    I have suffered with this problem all my life. I am number 5 in a family of 9children and have had an identity issue of who I am and where do I fit. I came to Jesus over 20 years ago and am now in business with my sister and her husband and my husband. I feel like I am back in the middle again. I believe your book may give me some guidance on how to find me again.

  295. Comparing ourselves to others truly is something we all face, adults and children. I have worked with children of all ages in our school system as the school nurse so I have seen this time and time again. This book will encourage us even remind us that our Great GOD has created an original!

  296. I loved the message today. The sooner we find ut we are not a cookie cuter design but something very special designed by God we will never be happy. You cannot be someone else no matter how hard you try. Each child is different, they should neve be compared to each other because it came damage them for life. Each child has their own special gifts from God just as we do.

  297. As I look at my 8 year old twins— my heart. I don’t want to “fail” this parenting thing, but oh how fun it was to just be a mom.
    But now, with many outside factors reaching in to our family, school activities, birthday parties, sports, sports and sports and EXPECTATIONS . It seems that the world has a hold on us. The daily plans. How I wish for a pause button, to regroup, fix the parts of us that are broken, and try again. But that doesn’t exist.
    Praying for His wisdom and direction.

  298. Brenda Parrott says:

    Good Morning,
    It was such a pleasure to see Julie as the guest writer today. I attend Life Austin Church and we are blessed to have her as one of our pastors.
    With a smile on my face I pray for you a blessed and wonderful day!
    Brenda

  299. Great lesson! I’ve been struggling with this all my life, to accept what God created in me and not to compare myself to others. Love that God created us unique and special:-)

  300. Would love a copy of this book.

  301. In this world today that seems to be getting more and more socialistic, along with technology that allows us to be visually and verbally connected to many others, there is a tendency for us to want to be like some of the “perfection” in talent and brains we see out there. It is unrealistic of course. What we see is not always the truth. It is also sometimes hard to accept who we are because the world is very judgmental today. The world is constantly telling us we are not good enough. Take a pill to be happier. Get surgery to be prettier. “We get it, you don’t.” I try not to compare myself to my millionaire sister who travels and lives the good life all the time. I am actually fine with my modest life against hers until she forgets she is my sister and we communicate like strangers because of our differences that she perceives, or when she doesn’t call my children and be their loving aunt. I love my sons deeply for the two unique men they are and I always have. Of course all mothers want their children to be happier and find their potential. Mothers want their children to find their peace through God. Mothers want their children to love and be proud of their mom. I don’t really see myself in the “comparison game” other than I want and deserve the same happiness and peace for me and my sons that everyone in this world should have.

  302. Barbara Myers says:

    I’m so thankful for all the gifts & talents our God gives to each of us. Like the myriad of flowers He has created each of us with special “colors & fragrances”, & together we compose a huge bouquet for His glory!

  303. Perfect read for such a time as right now. Raising 4 kids and learning how each is truely an original. I am encouraged by your words today! Thank you!

  304. As the oldest of three, I often wondered why – and also how – my parents chose to express their love to us in different ways. Now that I’m older, I am beginning to understand and have a true appreciation for their approach. I was blessed to be raised in loving, Christian home and it is my hope and prayer that our future children will know God’s love through our love, just like my husband and I both experienced growing up.

    My husband and I do not have children (yet!), but we work closely with the children in our church. Each child is unique and responds to different expressions of love and encouragement. As we continue to help with children’s ministry and begin planning our family, I think this would be an excellent read for us.

  305. Thank you for this reminder today! I have an ADHD child and really needed this! God has his own plan for my life and my child raising. I would love to read your book too!

  306. What a perfect scripture for me to read today. How often I find myself comparing to fit in. Cannot wait to read your new book.

  307. I so relate to the devotional (Whose Kids Am I Raising?) this morning, well not just this morning everyday…
    The devotional is every good and encourage, hope to win one of the 5 books your giving away I know it will be so good and helpful in my spiritual growth…
    God Bless you and your writing…………
    Lyrinda Lakey

  308. Tifany Lewis says:

    I thank God for this message today. It was the gentle reminder I needed from the holy spirit. I’m not alone on this journey, and most importantly I’m free to live out the life God has created for me. I’m also free to enjoy my children as they are and watch God fulfill his purpose in their lives. Thank you!

  309. Thankful for your message today! What a great reminder that we are wonderfully made!

  310. Thank you for this reminder. I was just walking my 1st grader to school, and as I began my walk home, I watched her play and laugh with her friends. I remember thinking, who is she in that group of kids? Who am I raising? Is she the shy, timid one? Is she kind to others? Does she compare herself to them? And then I stopped. I realized that I can’t be comparing her if I don’t want her to begin comparing herself. It is so very important for me to encourage her to become the person God has created her to be…. And I too, need to be confident that I am becoming who God wants me to be and not compare myself to others.

  311. Jessica Rassler says:

    Wow!! This is something I struggle with daily and this devotion really hit home and I am going to copy the prayer down to say every morning!

  312. I would love to give this book to my daughter. Young mother of a one year old, so eager to compare her parenting and child to her friends. Society has the pressure on them…. God has a better plan! I would love to have her see what God is saying rather than what her friends are saying.

  313. Would like be a copy, to delve into what it means and how to discern the uniquities between my children and how to help them realize their potential in Christ.

  314. Thanks for this devotion which reminds us that we are uniquely made by our Creator. Also thanks for the message that we should not compare ourselves with others. Psalm 62:5 “Let all that I am wait quietly before God, my hope is in Him.”

  315. Thank you for the timely message today. As a Mom of an almost 15 year old daughter who definitely does not fit into the “cookie cutter mold” of the normal teenager, it’s sometimes difficult to want her to be more like the “other kids” and not be her original self in dress and looks. Over the last few years, I’ve come to embrace the special and unique person she is in every way and I’m learning to appreciate the fact that she is a little different from everyone else (and I am as well) and that’s a good thing! She has more confidence in herself than I did at that age……she and I both still have a long way to go as everyone goes through the comparison trap at times, but she has a good foundation and I’m happy for that. I would appreciate a copy of your book to help us to continue along this path…..

  316. Teresa Fox says:

    This is something I struggle with on a daily basis! I am fairly new in my re-found faith in God. I feel like I am drifting aimlessly in open waters surrounded by sharks with no land in sight! I constantly forget to cast my worries and fears on Him. Prayers appreciated!

  317. I need to get this book! I, way to often, find myself comparing everything! Especially my kids and I am sure they feel the sting from it.

  318. Deanne Schwartz says:

    Would love, love, love a copy of this book! ❤

  319. I struggle with perfectionism in every aspect of life. What a timely measage this morning! God’s grace is the channel to be the person He created us all to be!

  320. 💗💗💗 Whatva timely Word! I totally was just beating myself up, knowing I have a responsibility to raise my children for the Kingdom but overwhelmed because what works for “everyone else” soooo doesn’t work for our family. Thank you

  321. What a timely truth this message was! As a new mom, it is too easy to get caught in the comparison game. This reminded me to step away from the “madding crowd” and look only to Him for our identity and guidance. Thank you for sharing!

  322. I find myself comparing myself to others all the time. I desperately want to stop doing this because it always makes me feel as if I don’t measure up. I would love to read this book.

  323. Thank you so much for your message and I couldn’t agree more, however the reference to Galatians 5:26 is not what the Bible reads. Out of love for the word and for you, no matter how nice a different version sounds, we are not to add or take away from God’s word, unless I am mistaken then please let me know. I hope you take this not as criticism but again because of my love for Gods word, which does not read as quoted in your post today. Thank you and this is sent in love and concern.

  324. Beautiful – thank you for this important reminder!

  325. I would love to read your book. Thank you for the message and important reminder!

  326. Barb Lefebvre says:

    Would love a copy for my original son and individual daughter in law as they raise my awesome grandbabies!!

  327. Brooke Repine says:

    This is a really great message that I wish everyone could hear on repeat everyday! Would love to read your book, Raising an Original! Thanks Julie

  328. It’s been tough living in today’s evangelical culture where conformity to a set of “biblical” standards tends to replace the power of Christ himself living in humanity person by person that more accurately reflects his glory and design. It will require a more complete and rich faith that surrenders to our Risen Lord in His fullness, because certainly He CAN be trusted! Then I have the freedom and resposibility to be that unique reflection of his person in a needy world. To live it in front of my children authentically…Now that takes courage and faith! And taking him by the hand…

  329. This book would be amazing!

  330. Julie Casertano says:

    I love originality and strive to be who God made me to be…unique…imperfectly honest…refreshing…but love all the help I can get and love to encourage others to be that unique masterpiece, too!

  331. I would love this book.
    Last week We where in the doctors office with our oldest and most “original” child and where given a diagnosis we where expecting. Though it is challenging, it is also relieving to know what’s going on inside of his brain. We know God created him uniquely and I’ve begun praying for God to help me love him the way God created him. To support him with his unique personality, a learning styles in a new way going forward.

  332. Betty Batte says:

    Thank you for your inspiring emails. I do not always get to read them, but when I do, they are well worth the time spent! God bless you and keep up the “God” work!

  333. Great read today! Thanks for sharing this! Would love a copy of your book!

  334. Elaine in North Tx. says:

    This is something I struggle with. The book sounds like it would be very helpful.

  335. I’m struggling lately with parenting my 5 year old. He is very strong willed and lately, has been extremely defiant and has been having a lot of extreme reactions and meltdowns. I’m praying it is only temporary, but it is frustrating and I need wisdom

  336. With 4 unique adult children raising 11 unique grandchildren, I would love a copy of this book to read myself and share with my kids.

    Thanks.

  337. So true!! May we all live the life and be the original person that God made us to be.

  338. Something I truly struggle with… this was a perfect devotional to read this morning! I would love to read more in the book!

  339. I have been using the saying “cookie cutter” frequently since my son entered kindergarten 10 years after his sister… We thank God for blessing us with a second child so many years from the first.
    And now I jokingly say that I have been contacted by the kindergarten teacher more times in two months for my son than I’ve been contacted from any teacher for my daughter in 11 years! I proclaim that we, as his parents co-teaching with the school teachers, need to find what motivates my son to listen and learn to use self-control. Because, as I’ve been saying, these children are not “cookie cutter” children, praise God! And praise God for showing me, when I ask, exactly what inspiration and discipline for growing that each child distinctly needs.
    I would love to read your book!

  340. Teresa Froese says:

    Each one of us is an original, I like that!! Thanks for the encouragement not to compare my life or my children to others. God never intended for me to live someone else’s life.

  341. Tammy Trietch says:

    I guess my question is how do I discover, at 57, what God wants me to do? Two years ago, my husband & I became foster parents; we now have legal custody of an 8 year old. In addition, I just learned that my hubby has amassed over 40K in debt – this is since we paid off all debt in June 2015! This was not how I expected to spend my retirement years. But, i’m trusting in God’s plan & trying really hard not to fall for Satan’s lies.

  342. Cheryl Martinez says:

    Thank you for reminding me that I am an originalternative masterpiece.

  343. Leah Fisher says:

    This was a great message! We are afraid at times to be who God wants us to be. So we try to be who WE think we should be. I want to read your book.

  344. Thank you for this word of encouragement! I am a new mom with a 5 month old and find myself fighting this battle daily.

  345. Tammy Wilshire says:

    What a great message for me this morning – I love the reminder to be who God intended us to be – an original version and not a copy. This is also a great message for my teenaged daughter who has Asperger’s and wants to fit in with her peers. I always tell her she is her own person and made unique by God. A good verse and devotional to share with her…..

  346. Loved your message today….it really sparked my soul.

  347. Just what I needed to read today, struggling with this issue…..thank you

  348. Thank you for this message today.

  349. Inspiring message!

  350. Thank you so much for this wonderful encouragement as a mother of 2 kids under 3 I need to grab hold of that verse in Galatians and not compare. God made me the only mother of these kids and I need to embrace that and not copy! Help me Lord Jesus.

  351. Jessica Tessman says:

    This is what my heart needed. Thank you!

  352. Terri Schmidt says:

    I was constantly being compared to my 2 sisters growing up so it has always been hard for me to think I’m an original. I remember thinking as a young child that I wish I was someone else. Please pray for me. Help me to see myself as God sees me. Thank you.

  353. Love this! I definitely needed to hear it. Now to apply it…

  354. Babara Whetsell says:

    I found this to be very inspiring. My husband is always comparing our marriage to other marriages & I always say we do not know what’s behind their doors. The same goes for raising our kids – he is always comparing his life as a carefree 14yo to my son & I always have to remind him of the times we live in.

  355. Kayla Biggs says:

    Oh, how my heart and mind needed this today! I often find myself getting caught up in comparison. I feel lost sometimes when it comes to parenting, and forget to lean on God. Instead I find myself trying on new things that other parents do that I admire, hoping maybe it will help me find my way. What I need to remember is that he chose me to be their mother and has given me all that I need to be the mom that they need. I also find myself comparing my children to others… are they as smart? why are mine so hyper? why does mine fight for more attention? In return, I find myself doubting my parenting more. They are who God made them to be, and I am the mother and person God made me to be as well. I need to embrace myself and my parenting more. In addition, I need to stop comparing my children and encouraging them to be who they are. This was amazing, I can’t wait to read the book!

  356. Becky Sutton says:

    Love this. It is a much needed reminder.

  357. WOW! I so needed this right now, I have a son who just started middle school and I have found myself
    many many times comparing myself to the other parents and questioning am I doing enough! are his grades
    as good as the others, am I volunteering enough!! etc. and this message spoke to me in volumes!! YES I am enough and I’m a work in progress! Thank You

  358. As I struggle to identify myself this would be helpful and it would help me equip my children as well as our future of our adopted child.

  359. Christy Bigham says:

    Thank you for the word of encouragement for a tired mom. ❤

  360. This devotional post was meant to be read by me today. I guilty of the comparison game far to often. Thank you for this truth today! God bless.
    -Joy

  361. Nicole Miller says:

    I struggle with this daily, especially being a new homeschooling mom. I worry about how I am doing as a mother, teacher, and nurturer. All while worrying about how my children are doing compared to peers, whether homeSchooled or not. I need wisdom and guidance and encouragement that I’m doing what God called me to do and that’s all that matters. Thank you for this article, the book will be a huge blessing to whoever wins it. Good luck to all!

  362. Wow! I’m a homeschooling (solo) parent to 3 teens right now…this would be an invaluable resource for me and them…while I still have time!! 😉

  363. taylor summers says:

    I am helping to raise my precious grandaughter Addie. She wants to do everything i do and idolizes everything about me. I want to read your book!!💜

  364. Bree Rogganbuck says:

    I want so badly for myself & my children to see what their gifts and talents are and how they are to use those for their life’s work. My children are different from others and this article is so encouraging in remembering they are who God created them to be. And so I struggle with knowing how to raise them, what I should be doing, and what I need to do differently. I am very interested in this book. Thank you for this today and this resource!

  365. Becky Foutz says:

    Even though my children are all raised, it is still a struggle not to compare myself in other ways to those around me. Thank you for reminding me of God’s great work in making each of us an original!

  366. Tracy Kirby says:

    Thank you so much for sharing your heart. I am a mother of a 7 year old who is strong willed and independent. I really would love to read your book Raising an Original because it can help me direct her in the direction she needs to go. Thank you again and I pray God will bless you and your family!

  367. I would love to read this book. I have 4 kids and all 4 have distinct personalities.

  368. What an amazing reminder for the start of this day. God is good!

  369. These words speaks to me … to not copy others or compare ourselves or our kids with others. God made us each unique with our own talents and gifts. We are to embrace that and receive God’s love and acceptance! God is the only one we need to please. Julie’s book would be helpful to read or share with another.

  370. Thank-you very much!!

  371. Thank you so much for your encouraging words. I struggle so much with comparison, and have never really pondered that this could be hindering that originality and uniqueness that God has placed in me and my children. You’ve opened my eyes to see things differently.

  372. I SO needed this message today. While I do not have children of my own, I have struggled with comparison in my marriage for a long time. I have actively been focusing on getting healthier in this aspect, and consciously staying off of social media has been very helpful. Every time I find myself looking with envy at someone else’s post, I turn it off and start praying.

  373. Thank you for these words. I think most of us know we shouldn’t compare but it is easier said than done. It helps to remember that no one else has ever parented my child but me and my husband. Every child is uniquely made by God.

  374. Thanks you so much for this mornings devotion…I am just starting on a new path and was falling for the mistake of trying to be like the previous person who had the role instead of the me I was created to be.
    Now I have this to remind me
    Thank you Lord

  375. Jean Duncan says:

    I have 2 beautiful girls. 1 introvert, 1 extrovert, one I birthed, one we birthed thru adoption. I would love to know how to encourage each of their unique gifts and personalities as God intends.
    Thank you so much for sharing, and for the laugh. I am always putting myself down because I am not as outgoing as many other women I know. It helps to be reminded that when we reject ourselves we reject God’s design for our life.

  376. This is so true Julie. Too many times we compare ourselves to others and wonder why we feel like failures when the truth is we’re just trying to run someone else’s race. I pray that we will all learn to run the race that is set out before us.

  377. I have two children, a boy and a girl, and they could not be more different in their little personalities. I would love to learn more about raising them as the unique individuals they are.

  378. Katie Fredrickson says:

    I needed to read this today!

  379. Michelle Dyer says:

    Thank you for the morning devotion today. My husband and I are raising two teenage boys who have gone quite far astray from God and from how we raised them. It has been a discouraging journey seeing them make such bad choices, often made worse by comparing ourselves to the other kids and families who seem to not have these same difficulties.
    Comparison DOES steal your joy….Thank you for this timely reminder this morning. I will purpose today to remember what I’ve read.

  380. I love the reminder that we are all originals and we need to see each other that way and respect it too.

  381. Lovely message…thank you! Everyone can relate. Oh how I wish as a young mother I had read this devotion. I will share with my daughter 💕

  382. Julie,

    Thank you for this message! I think the we all need to embrace the differences we share and the gifts we bring to each other’s lives. I know, for us, we want to raise our son with the self-confidence to embrace his own God-given gifts. It is so important we teach our children to embrace the differences in their peers, as well.
    From one Mom to another, I appreciate you sharing your lessons in this area.
    Sincerely,
    Jeanine

  383. Thank you so much for this devotional. My children are two and four and I have really would love to raise them to be originals instead of copies! Amen

  384. I would love to read this book!!

  385. Oh, just this!! Thank you so much for sharing your heart. I would absolutely LOVE a copy of your book. 🙂

  386. what an excellent lesson. my son has special needs. when he was a child i had to listen to why isn’t he walking? talking? still in diapers at almost five? i felt guilty like it was my fault. i hate to say it but i would get embarrassed by things he said and did. i was told he would never be able to….. fast forward he’s almost 33. held the same job for 15 years, going to college and taking law enforcement classes. it took a long time for me to truly appreciate his uniqueness. he still does interesting things but he is kind, loving and caring and has been embraced by our church family and his work family. thanks again

  387. Jess Roselle says:

    Amen!

  388. In the days of constant social media, it is so easy to compare ourselves to everyone else’s “highlight reel”. Thanks for the great devotional and reminder that God works best through us when we are ourselves!

  389. Thank you for this inspirational post. It makes me realize that we are individuals that have to find our own selves. And that we need to teach our children that they too need to find their own selves. That we need to look and seek the Lord to find that. He will help us find ourselves and to help us not just copy what others do. Lately, I have been feeling inadequate because I am comparing myself to others. I need to find what is good and original about me and let it shine.

  390. Rebecca Davis says:

    Great encouraging post. It’s hard to switch parenting styles from one child to the next some days but it’s very important to remind ourselves that they are originals and to embrace that gift from God. God knew what he was doing when he created us all and He has a plan for us. I try to remind myself that when dealing with the super sensitive child and then the very strong willed child. Thank you for sharing your wisdom and insight.

  391. Thank you! After a day off with all 4 kids — it’s a good reminder that they are unique and not the “neighbours” kids… haha… I would love this book!

  392. “I can be tempted to compare my kids, my work or my marriage with other people’s, feeling like I come up short. But nobody has ever raised my kids before. No one but my husband and I have conducted this particular marriage. No one but God and I walk the path He has for me. I can learn from others, and I can even gain wisdom, but their lives are not mine to copy.”

    This spoke to me so much!!!thank you!!!

  393. Love your thoughts! It is so hard not to compare…but knowing we are perfect in His eyes makes it all better.

  394. With eight children who are all unique, I’m interested in how to do this job:)

  395. I heard about this book at a MomsNext meeting and forgot about it until now. Thank you for reminding me I wanted to check it out!

  396. Yes and yes! My heart resonates with this message! Our children are uniquely created – each with a particular and individual calling upon their lives. I firmly believe that we are in a renaissance time period, and that we cannot force our children into a preconceived mold – something that we feel comfortable with, proud of, or even is a “wise choice” for their future. Our wonderful God and Father (who gave us these children anyway) knows them best and He alone knows the future. He will guide them – and us! – into what He has planned for them. Can we trust Him- WILL we trust Him- with our children? The very future depends on it!

  397. Thank you so much for these wise words today. In college I was part of a small church organization that had a tendency to idolize “spiritual superstars”, men and women (usually previous members of the organization) that seemed to be living in just the perfect way and giving of their resources and energy when it seemed like they should be unable to do so. We always tried to emulate them, were always compared to them, and always felt inadequate when we came up short. Unfortunately this instilled a very comparison-focused mindset in myself and my friends that many of us, a few years after leaving the organization, still struggle with. We feel like we’re not giving enough, we don’t pray enough, we don’t evangelize enough. How freeing it is to know that God made us all originals and has a unique plan to fit each of our unique personalities. He doesn’t call us to turn into the spiritual superstars of the world. This is especially relevant for me as I am now starting my parenting journey with my young daughter. Getting a grasp on these concepts early will help so much to help all of us build a more Christ-centered future. Again, thank you for the word today! It was a blessing!

  398. Thank you for today’s message. I need that reminder especially in my kids. I think so many try to influence us to make our kids into a certain mold including our own parents that we need the reminder they are God’s children and he has a plan and we need to be there to support his plan rather than implement our own. To support the kids in exploring the gifts, talents, and character God has given them.

  399. I would love a copy of this book!💕
    I’ve often treated my children 14 months apart in age) as if they are twins & I have often caught myself comparing them. I could use some prayers.🙏 Thank you!

  400. Love the artist comparison, we are all originals and worth every cent of it. God chose us to parent 4 children and yes some days we want a manual that can be used for all 4 but each one is unique and each brings us joy in so many different ways. Just as God shows us his glory through our senses in so many different ways, we can say “now this, this is just a glimpse of what heaven will be”! How awesome to know we’ll one day be in front of the original, and only true God not a picture, not a copy, HIM.

  401. I’m a bit confused. The point of that passage (end of Eph 5-beginning of 6) is NOT about comparison…it’s about not falling into the trap of sin, of letting the Spirit produce fruit and of helping those around us that have fallen into sin. In so doing, we actually emulate Christ, who IS the one we are supposed to become like by the sanctification of the Holy Spirit. Maybe a better passage re:comparison would have been 1 Cor 12.
    Remember, The Message is a paraphrase, and a poor one at that, so that the intent of the Scripture is actually lost in translation.

  402. Melissa Paselk says:

    This was so inspirering for me. My son is 13 and I want wonderful things for him and his future but have felt lately like I have not helped him be courageous enough in being himself. Thanking for sharing Gods word in such an inspiring way.

  403. Jolene Depew says:

    As ever, God uses His word, faithfully shared by His obedient servants, to speak to the hearts of all who will listen.’Speak, Lord, for your servant heareth.’ Now it’s up to me to respond, to stop the comparing and nurture and celebrate my Maker’s creativity in so generously gifting me with abilities to share for His glory.

    I would love to give this book to my niece, the mother of three precious little ones, all below the age of four. Recognizing the individuality of each child and then disciplining and nurturing them uniquely is a challenge I can only imagine. I want to support her as she continues to meet this challenge daily.

    Thank you… for encouraging me and, likewise, encouraging others through your book. May God continue to bless your ministry.

    Jolene

  404. Melinda Wagner says:

    Thank you for this post!! I have an almost 10-month daughter and my most hopeful prayer for her is that my husband and I can raise her to love God and to be a lighthouse for others. She is such a precious blessing from God and I hope to never forget that she is an individual who doesn’t need comparison to others. She is God’s beautiful, happy, and shining art

  405. Thank u for the encouraging words. Would like to win a copy of this book to be able to read more positive inspiration.

  406. Katie Mowdy says:

    This is perfect timing to share with a friend of mine. We are both teachers, although I am currently on maternity leave (baby boy is 5 weeks old) and we were talking yesterday about how the school system is always trying to get teachers to copy each other and do like the other one does and it makes us feel like we can’t ever be good enough. The constant comparing that happens at the schools we work out is exhausting because we can’t all do what Teacher A and Teacher B do— and we don’t want to! We are Teacher SELF and we pray they’d let us teach in the way we know how that makes us and our students thrive. Our joy in teaching is totally stolen by the constant comparing! If only our admin could use a Bible at the meetings.

  407. Dee Snyder says:

    This is a subject that requires almost daily reminders. It’s so difficult to not make comparisons to others and see how we measure up. I like the idea of “God makes originals.” We are all valuable and loved.

  408. I would love to read this book as I have 3 very uniquely different children and it is easy to fall into the trap of comparison with others! I am so thankful to have read this devotional today!

  409. Tracy Williams says:

    This would be a great book for me to read! I’m getting married in April and my fiancé has a 14 year old daughter.

  410. I am thankful for those around us who have wisdom and the ability to teach. We don’t always have the answers but I do believe that God puts those answers on someone else’s heart. Thank you for taking the time to write a book.

  411. Amen! This spoke very clear to my heart today. Thank you.

  412. Gloria Pettitt says:

    This came at such a great time! I am a new mother of an almost 10 month old little girl. I have struggled with comparing myself to others for as long as I can remember and want to learn how to in power my little girl to be the person God created her to be not who society or other people want her to be.
    I have been a teacher for many years and it is always the kiddos that have their own outlook on life that seem to be the happiest and friendliest. Definitely something to learn from them!

  413. Brenna Book says:

    This devotional today is amazing. Love every word. Very much truth that I needed to hear. Thank you! ❤️

  414. Thank you for the encouragement today. It is so simple, yet so profound. Thank you!

  415. Kendra Burns says:

    Awesome devotional!!! I love how the devotionals are always so timely for every stage of my life!
    I am a mom of a precocious 4 year old boy. He lovely, lively, funny and smart…but he’s also directional (I choose that over bossy!) and coming into his stubborn side. I am always asking if I’m doing the right things. Which usually leads me to comparing myself to other parents and using them as my litmus test. And as you said, it happens in so many areas too; body weight, professional success, etc. Thank you for this encouragement!! I needed to be reminded of the truths you outlined!!

  416. I think this was really inspiring! Not very many messages like this get out in the real world now a days. I absolutely loved reading that “each of us is an original” and that “God infuses into us originalities.” How completely true! A point missed that most of us over look because we’re too busy comparing our lives to others around us. Today, I choose courage over copy!

  417. Beth Hortin says:

    Entering to win a free book. I hope it to be a blessing for my family.

  418. I would love to have a copy of thus book! I have just recently, within the last few yrs, started being myself, regardless of what others think & whether they like me or not. This is something very important that I want to teach my daughters. I would love having some help in doing that!

  419. I just shared this same thing with my husband. Went on a girls weekend and all they could talk about was their straight A children. At our house we struggle with maintaining a C. It is so hard not to compare our children to others especially when they are bragging to you. Love the message today. Have a great week.

  420. Thanks for the message. This is an area I definitely struggle with both personally as well as with my children. Would love to win this book.

  421. Shelena Helms says:

    I so want to raise my kids to be who God made them to be!

  422. Thank you for this devotional. It is what I need to remind myself not to look at others. Everyone has their own talents that God blesses on them were are all unique. I hope I can win a copy .God bless this ministry

  423. This really struck a cord with me! Particularly for the way I’m struggling to parent one of my children. Thank you for the truth & encouragement!

  424. Thank you for the encouraging words,as a mother we always questioning ourselves.We put a huge amount of pressure on ourselves and our children.I needed these encouraging words today.

  425. Great truths for all of us here.
    Can’t wait to give that book to my daughter. She’s an awesome mom (and my two grand kids are great!), but we all can use some good insight and encouragement!
    Thanks for this!

  426. Tiwalade Odu says:

    Awesome post. It has strengthened my resolve to see God’s will come to pass in my life and that of my loved ones especially my husband and children. God bless you.

  427. I would truly love a copy, as my oldest son leaves for college in the fall and my two youngest will still be at home. Life is changing for my whole family and so are the potential influences on their lives.

  428. Love this devotional! Would love to read the book, as my daughter and I have very opposite personalities.

    • Melissa,
      My daughter and I also have contrasting personalities, and I am slowly learning to honor this. But it’s a bumpy trip out of the teen years.
      Dee

  429. kids are unique – a gift from God

  430. Molly stewart says:

    Great encouragement. I often size myself up against others and find myself insecure. When I compare myself to God, however, I am inspired to be who he created me to be.

  431. Wow what a powerful message. Struggle with it daily. Find it easier to be myself than to put myself in positions to compare or make judgements. I have written this scripture on a note card and will place it by my mirror. Time for a change. Thank you for the encouragement and words of wisdom. Especially with raising my son for God not for others.

  432. Wow! I needed this today. 🙂

  433. I would love to have a copy of this book!

  434. This book, I’m pretty sure was written for me! I’d love to have a copy to read, and reread, and then read again!

  435. Nancy Voltura says:

    Sometimes I get so discouraged because my kids and my marriage and me don’t measure up to others. This showed me one word …..original ….is the reason and now I feel relief .thank you

  436. Zola Jones says:

    With social media I constantly compare my life to others and this was a great message to set that straight!

  437. I just decided to write a novel that’s been swirling around in my brain for about a year. Mid December I complete my Master’s, but I didn’t think I could write a novel…because I don’t look like everyone else all polished, etc. Well, I bought the program yesterday to get organized and I plan to begin in January putting my many years of training into action. I’m so glad I saw your devotional today. I may not write or use the same methodology of others, but it will be God’s work of art. In the end, I will be used by God. That’s all that matters. Thank you.

  438. Kelly Jenkins says:

    I absolutely love that I’ve got a houseful of beautiful originals! Thanks for sharing your insight.

  439. Such a wonderful message!

  440. That’s why we need to know and encourage ourselves what the Bible is saying to us and how the Lord sees us rather than what the world is telling us how we should see ourselves and do to be accepted in society. This is the world’s view and wisdom of men, which is wrong. The Lord says in Psalm 139:14 – ” I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well”.

  441. Sally Ann Price says:

    Thanks for sharing this. This is great reading.

  442. I took a Break today from my “perfectly clean house” when a friend was coming over routine because she was always apologizing to me for her “mess” when I went over, saying how clean my house was all the time, Because I have compared myself to others in the same way in quite a few different aspects of life I told her I wouldnt clean so she could see how i actually live 90%of the time. We had just as good of a time in my messy house as when its spotless and that too helped me put my “guards” down which was quite liberating. I have compared myself to others realizing later that they too feel the same and didn’t have it all worked out. I really liked this read, thank you.

  443. I have 3 kids w/3 very different personalities. I struggle w/how to parent each one in the best way for them.

  444. Thanks for this message! Today was an especially difficult day in raising my two little ones, it was such a great reminder for myself to remember that they are original, who they are is a part of them/ part of God’s creation. It so easy to get stuck comparing them to others their age!

  445. Eleanor Smith says:

    Excellent writing! I am a great grandmother and my child rearing days are about over. However, I do still interact with my grands and greats and even my own children. Your message is spot on and it will be shared whenever it seems to be God’s will! Thank you.

  446. Such a timely message! Thank you!

  447. Lisa Williams says:

    Mother of a 18 and 22 year old. I need this book.

  448. Melissa Gray says:

    So excited to read this!

  449. Chanel Williams says:

    Thanks for this reminder

  450. Danielle Thompson says:

    How often do I wonder if I am doing a good Jonas a mother? Too Often. Here’s the worst part, she is only 2! I look at other moms with 2 year olds who are talking in complete sentences and don’t have to have a pacifier to go to sleep and wonder if I’m doing something wrong. Reading this blog today has put this in a better perspective for me. I would love to win a copy of this book, and once done reading it I would share it with my sister in law who is also raising a young child.

  451. I would love a copy of this book. I have always been compelled to help younger people identify with how God sees them or who they really are….not to identify themselves with the world views.

  452. So very true. 59 years old and still go through that. God made us unique. When will we learn?

  453. Megan Greathouse says:

    Wow does this speak to my heart! I would love this book.

  454. Thank you for this much needed reminder. I often find myself in the comparison trap and it’s sometimes hard to get out. I’d love to get a copy of your book!

  455. Yes, so need guidance on how to raise an original! I’m new in faith and have a two year old son and would love to raise him to be his own shining light!

  456. I loved reading this! My Mom always said, “be yourself!”
    When I remember that God’s Word says not to compare… I am free.

  457. Jennifer Elliott says:

    I am very interested in reading this book. Today’s message Proverbs 31 really started me thinking I need to take a new approach with my son. Thank you for today’s message

  458. Susanna Smith says:

    I would love to read this book. Raising my little girl is the most important and terrifying task I’ve ever had, and I’d love as much Christian perspective on it as I can gather.

  459. Erin Lafferty says:

    Aways need guidance when raising my boys up right!

  460. This inspiration spoke to the core of my being. I have spent the last twenty years living as others have perceived I should in order to have friends. Today, although I stand alone, I am living my true authentic self awaiting God to send others to me who are doing the same, so that we can love and encourage each other in our uniqueness. God Bless.

  461. I praise God,the one and only, who creates the best masterpieces! We are all original! I see His Master pieces in my family and friends, even my beautiful granddaughter! I pray that I always see God’s beautiful masterpieces! His greatest master piece is Son! Such a gift to all of us!
    Thank you!

  462. Wow at the timing. My little girl marches to the beat of her own drum. I told her that people may start saying she is weird. She promptly informed me that she is not weird, but unique! How dare me try to change that. Thank you for the message!

  463. So many well meaning people .. Only Jesus knows us though. Scary lonely at times. Yet (some) Health, learning difficulties have been our struggle.. Even so l know,and have experienced Gods Healing.. I wouldn’t be alive without Jesus! Love is Active, yet when l am unwell..what then? l Keep Always Loving Caring Praying. Special needs for each child,yet it is difficult l can not be all to everyone. Lonely at times, Yet Not All The Time!! 🙂 Thank you for your articles. Forgiveness, and Do Not Compare – Freedom Reigns!

  464. Whitney S. says:

    This book sounds fascinating and timely.

  465. Inspiring read! I think we all need to be reminded that in the game of comparison, we all lose! I know that I have wasted too much time wondering if I have been a ‘good mom’ when I look at my kids’ lives and stack them up against other people’s kids. This devotion gave a very important reminder that I need only to be concerned that I am doing my best to hear from God and raise them to seek God’s plan for their lives. Lots of hurdles….but God never gives up!

  466. Enjoyed the article as it was right on point. I have a beautiful child who is like no other. So thankful for resources and like minded people.

  467. Ashley Bracewell says:

    I would love to win this book! It seems like it hits some spots I’ve been struggling with

  468. Mona Corbi says:

    This spoke to my new mommy heart. I love how gentle and loving the message is. Thank you!

  469. What a refreshing way to look at what we look at daily! As a mother of three I have read a multitude of books on parenting. This captures the essence of where we go wrong. I can’t wait to read more!!! Love & blessings!

  470. Kendra Stearman says:

    I think we all suffer from doubt in our daily lives and need encouragement to be original and be an example to our children.

  471. I would love to win your book

  472. This was an excellent reminder! Love it!!!
    Would love to dig deeper with the book

  473. This is just what I needed today. Thank you.

  474. Great devo! I’d love to read the book.

  475. This is so good for me to hear! I recently had my first son and already have caught myself comparing him to other babies the same way I do to myself with other women. Working on walking in my own unique design and loving my son in his own uniqueness just the way God made him.

  476. Rebecca Welch says:

    A timely word. Thank you!

  477. Sharon Burner says:

    I love this devotion. Thanks so much for being real and transparent.

  478. I greatly appreciated today’s message that encourages us to be all of who He created us to be. It also embodied the truth in the scripture in Proverbs 22:6 “Train up a child in the way he should go (and in keeping with his individual gift or bent) and when he is old he will not depart from it.” God created each child with specific gifts or traits and when parents are able to discern what those particular gifts or traits are and encourage their children to develop them as they grow, when he/she is older, they can use those gifts/traits to fulfill God’s purposes for their lives.

  479. Something i struggle with daily- thank you for these words!

  480. Hilary Martel says:

    Such a great post!

  481. Brandy Garner says:

    Sometimes raising a four year old and a seven month old seems like an up hill battle and survival mode becomes all too real. Just when I question my ability to raise them to be good people, God sends an ariticle like this my way. Thank you for keeping it real and for the reassurance we aren’t in this alone.

  482. Wonderful devotion. Would enjoy reading more.

  483. This was just what I needed as my kids are all tweens and teens…yikes!!

  484. Lakeshia Tart says:

    I love Proverbs 31. I have been a member for quite some time but I’ve recently allowed this ministry to minister to my spirit. So, I say thank you ladies for allowing the Holy Spirit to use you all to plant seeds in the lives of others. God bless
    Lakeshia

  485. What a great reminder! Thank you for this devotion!

  486. As a mom of a 15 year old daughter I really needed to read this today! Thank you!

  487. Loved reading today’s devotional and would LOVE to read her book! My husband and I have been talking a lot lately about how to raise each of our boys uniquely based on their very different personalities.

  488. Julie, I am so proud of you.

  489. Charlotte Lorimer says:

    A very encouraging read. Thank you!

  490. Sarah Harrison says:

    Super interested in this book!

  491. Tina Brown says:

    I so need this. I am struggling now raising my children. I often question if what I am doing is appealing to God. I would love to read and get advice for my children.

  492. Some people have such a gift for recognizing strengths in children and encouraging them to develop them! Unfortunately, I’m not one of those people! I sometimes just look at my children and wonder how they’ll ever grow into mature adults. I wish I could figure out each of their unique strengths and help them develop to their full potential – but most of the time I feel like I’m bumbling along in the dark! This book sounds like it could be very helpful and encouraging for me as a mom.

  493. Kimberly Covington says:

    Thank you for the chance to win. Would love to read this!

  494. Michelle Ballin says:

    I also struggle with comparison. Comparison reins in my life particularly in areas in which I’m lacking confidence and/or facing struggles. What a true statement and excellent reminder that comparison is a joy stealer and God makes us all unique. This message really spoke to me today.

  495. Sounds like a good read

  496. So appreciated your blog post today!
    Lord, help us to rely on Your creative ideas, rather than those of comparison!
    Would love to read the whole book 🙂

  497. Raising my boys is so hard right now. My eldest is forging a path – that many don’t understand – as a brilliant middle schooler who is severely dyslexic. I don’t say this to boast – I say it because I am honored that God chose my husband and I to parent this child. That the Lord gives him incredible strength, and the courage to advocate for himself. I would love to read this book, particularly because navigating the road with our second has actually turned out to be much more emotionally challenging!

  498. What a fantastic post! I would love to read the book as well. You see I’m a young mom of two head strong, spirited and to say the least world changers ages 3 and 1. Often times I feel all of the joys and struggles of being a mom all at once. I see other kids potty training, learning and achieving things far before my own. It all makes me feel like a horrible mother. But, this post helped me remember that I’m proud to have children who are world changers and only God knew that I was perfect to be their mama.

  499. It is a daily struggle raising a child, yet alone with judgey people watching everything you do. I’m constantly thinking I’m doing something wrong and then looking for guidance in the wrong places, i.e. mommy blogs and Pinterest and Google, when at the end of the day, I know I should only be looking for help from Above. I need reinforcement and encouragement from a mama who justs gets it, so this excerpt has me sold on your new book!

  500. One of my regular prayers for my three daughters is that they will learn to be content with themselves for who they are and how God made them and not compare themselves to each other or anyone else. It’s a lesson I’m still learning. I’m looking forward to reading your book for additional insight.

  501. Your post resonated strongly with me today. I recently attended a high school reunion and walked away with a gift from the Holy Spirit. No longer will the days of comparisons have a stronghold on me. I’ve lived far to long worrying about what others have thought of me, only to realize, they don’t even think of me!! I literally walked out in freedom!! In addition I have three very active, *loud* children who do not easily fit into the traditional mold of what *good little Christians* look like. And we struggle to know how to raise them with so many, many voices lending their opinion. Thank you for reminding me to whom I should listen and rely in the process of raising, guiding, and disciplining my children, as well as for my opinion of who I am.

  502. This is something I need to remind myself of regularly.

  503. Rachel Ducote says:

    I needed to be reminded of this today-thank you!

  504. Need Gods help with comparison! I want to live and embrace the life of originality that God intended for me and my family!In Jesus name. AMEN!

  505. I have three beautiful daughters, I hope and pray that they will grow up to be much more courageous and comfortable in their own skin than I have ever allowed myself to be in mine. Thank you for the valuable insight!

  506. I would love to win this book. I have 3 young kids, and I still have a lot to learn about parenting.

  507. I have an amazing son and I don’t want him to have the same scars , issues and feeling that I did growing up . I want him to know I’m always here for him no matter what and train him up in to love and follow the Lord!

  508. This writing touched me as I recalled the years my middle daughter tried to live in my oldest daughter’s shadow and was completely miserable. Only when she began walking in her own shoes along a different path did she begin to blossom and become the person she was meant to be! I would love reading the book and sharing it with her!

  509. It is hard not to compare and have same expections of my 3 kids. They are all different and excell uniquely. I try to focus on love encouragement and boundaries.

  510. Bethany Miller says:

    It is so hard not to compare your life with others. This devotion was so great at revealing that we are an original masterpiece of God’s hands. How beautiful!! Glad for the Bible’s reminders.

  511. Jennifer Riggs says:

    Thank you for your inspirational devotional and your generosity in sharing your new book!
    God bless you!

  512. I think we can all relate to the dressing room story at some point in our lives. This book sounds very relevant in today’s world , especially with all the “comparisons ” we do on social media

  513. Dearest Julie,
    A strong worded message to all who try to bend and break to fit in to someone else’s perspectives. From my personal experience holding on to ones originality in the midst of trials is difficult. But, we should always remember that, when we stand for what we are (as children of the King), our reward come from HIM, THE MOST HIGH.
    Rama (from India)

  514. Phenomenal truth!

  515. Megan Tonderum says:

    Love this!

  516. I no longer have children at home.. nor grandchildren that are in school (except one). However, when I read your post, it actually touched me. Where I am. Decisions I need to be making. Restarting my life at 72…. single (widow) … on new ground in a new season. I know I have more to offer the world than just to count time, and yet there are battles (depressioni, some health issues). Things that the enemy uses to try and keep me down. So, even though you are writing about children, for me, there is wisdom there on how to deal with myself. Finding out who I am in God at this season in my life. So thank you. I believe that there is always God’s Wisdom to be found in anything we read or hear… if we will but be open to see and listen. Your words have done that for me today. Thank you

  517. Thank you Julie,

    This was much needed today as I’ve lived with comparison and struggling to live up to expectations of the standards of others around me. From the day My daughter was born till today I’ve been labelled a bad mother who dosn’t know better, just because I do things differently from what is expected. I have been forced to conform due to the dominance over my motherhood which has been taken ovr by another and whenever I have tried to make my point and stand my ground, I have been despised and reprimanded cruely for it. Its like you aren’t fit to be a mother, we will do everything and you stay out. Like Rama, I too am from India and because of certain things that have happened in my childhood, I am looked at as incapable of anything, especially raising my own child. I am decided for and decided over without any say and when I have fought for what is mine I have been deemed evil and unsound. I have live with this struggle for seven years where my child is concerned, but my own personal struggles of insecurity all my life due to what I have suffered as a child. This outlook of me is mainly within my family circle – own and in-laws. I have come a long way and the Lord has brought me through a lot but there is still a long way to get to where I need to be especially where my child is concerned. I want to do this right and be the example Jesus wants be to be to her as her mother and the one he has chosen to raise her. I live with a broken and heavy heart daily waiting and doing the best I can in spite of being constantly found fault with. Jesus is my only stregth in all this and I have come to relaize I need only Him to get through this and everything else in my life.

  518. Oh, my. Is this ever for me… hitting me right between the eyes, or, rather, squarely in the soul! Thanks so much for your fresh perspective, the challenge, inspiration, & call woven through this devotion. I needed–no need–to be continually reminded.

  519. Please enter me to win s copy of “raising originals”

  520. This is especially true for young women in this age especially because of social media and how we are constantly seeing people’s virtual reality lives and seemingly perfect everything….the grace of God is indeed needed. I needed to read this, thank you.

  521. Tanya Spitzli says:

    This book would be such a great resource to have as I am raising my two girls! Thank you for your words of wisdom. I needed to be reminded of this today. I am a child of God and I am an original!

  522. Anna Williams says:

    Would like the book. Am sure it will help me and my family. Have been crying out tonight to God for a friend of mine and self also. Perhaps this book will help us both.

  523. ALALEKOWOSI ADURAGBEMI says:

    KIDS-RAISING GOD’S END TIME GENERALS

  524. Bethany Arnold says:

    I would love to have a copy of this book and thank you for sharing your words and applying God’s Word to real life circumstances.

  525. Angie Butzer says:

    I would love to win a copy of this book. I’m raising a nine year old daughter and this approach sounds like something that would really help guide my husband and I….

  526. I have a bad habit of comparing myself as a parent, a wife, a teacher, etc. I needed to be reminded that God is doing a new thing. Thank you!

  527. Carrie Lane says:

    I would greatly benefit from this book. My 10 year old son has a heart on fire for Jesus and for that I am forever grateful. He is also different from me in many ways. I’d love to better understand him. Thank you!

  528. Would love to win this book to give to my daughter who just became a mother 2 months ago!

  529. It’s so hard to not compare, but you are right in what you have written. God formed us on the womb. He made us unique on purpose.

  530. Thank you, I usually feel like I don’t fit in. As a child, and older, I worked so hard to be like others, never successful. Clothes didn’t fit the sane, I had no idea how to tame my hair. Always saying the wrong things. The same goes fir relationships and employment. I give up, I just can’t keep up. Now as my body changes, it’s more in my face. ..
    Doing my best to keep my eyes on Jesus and just follow His leading including Not thinking on what others think it me. But still struggle
    Thank you for the words! God bless you.

  531. I LOVE this! It’s a great reminder to not compare my kids with all the other kids at school, church, in our neighbourhood etc.!

  532. Would love to read your book

  533. I would love to learn more about raising an original.

  534. Such a great reminder with 3 little ones

  535. Regena mitschke says:

    What a great reminder! The book sounds wonderful!

  536. Emma Loyless says:

    I’d love to win a copy of this book as we approach the delivery date of our second child!

  537. Mary Giesbrecht says:

    I needed this today. Thank you.

  538. Erica Bourland says:

    One of the hardest parts of parenting, no one warned us about, is how different our parenting styles have to be for each child. Our oldest is a LEADER. An always right, never wrong, my way or the highway teenage leader, and has been since birth! She’ll do great things, I just hope I survive to see them! The middle is a pleaser. She’s the happy one, the wild one, an out of the box thinker and doer! She challenges my patience every single minute of every single day with the need to know, to only forget and ask again! The last one, the heart baby, that’s not much of a baby anymore, keeps me on my knees in prayer. Along with a heart condition, comes Tourette’s, ADHD, high anxiety, low frustration tolerance. The ABC Club of struggles creates an inability to function in a box-classroom and therefore must be homeschooled, and did I mention the biggest, most sincere caring heart for others that you will ever meet? That’s my daily course. No two are alike, and yet I find myself, out of sheer exhaustion, parenting them all the same way. Thank you for your devotional. It was a good reminder for the way I live for myself and for raising the babies! I’d love to get my hands on your book!!

  539. I pray everyday not to raise my children to “keep up” with the other children in their class or on their sports teams. It’s a real struggle because I’ve done it to myself my entire life. All I can hope for is to do better each day by them so they won’t struggle with it through their adult life.

  540. jennifer louise says:

    How Refreshing!! I love this!! I’ve always liked different things:) Im’ what you call the opposite of trendy. I like what I like & that is usually different than most……problem is that I have always dealt with approval or people pleasing…YUK! It’s two opposite worlds to try to live in all smashed into one, & honestly its exhausting. I must say God has helped me tremendously through the years to be o.k. with me & my thoughts & my style & how I do things, but at times its still a challenge, so I loved what you shared today. It’s a reminder that we all are an original & this is what makes for a beautiful one of a kind masterpiece that God & people are waiting for & need to see:) Thanks again!

  541. Lori Brown says:

    Wow! I do have a very bad habit of comparison for my life as a wife, mother, employee, and so on. I havve stumbled across this by the grace of God and can’t wait to read the rest! Thank you!

  542. What an incredible reminder to celebrate our children!! I have a very spirited little boy and I often am thinking and comparing to the other kids in his class that he never can sit still during reading time and we can’t seem to bring him anywhere without him making a scene. But he is also so unique and full of life and energy- what a great reminder for me to focus on those things instead of comparing!!

  543. Tracie Core says:

    Thank you so much for the reminder that God made each one of unique. Each with a unique purpose. If we are all feet who would be the hands? The body works together but we each have a different function. May you be blessed for blessing me with this reminder. Thank you.

  544. Melanie Sloan says:

    This is very timely…a friend and I were chatting yesterday and I told her that I am a “hands on” learner who needs to experience lofe in order to discover what I like/feel fits my style of living…but that I oftentimes feel like a copycat in the meantime. Thank you for articulating it in this fashion…it was much needed:)

  545. Deanna L. Montoya says:

    Your blog was just what I needed to read this morning. ..thank you! Social media had been getting me down, seeing all the “amazing. ..wonderful. ..perfection” in friends lives and their children’s lives. It got me down because me and my kids face many struggles in every way. We are HIS masterpiece, HIS design, unique and wonderfully made. 🙂

  546. I have always and still compare myself to others. My kids as well. Although my youngest is 28 she is a perpetual 6 yr old. I would love a copy of your book.

  547. I bet no one will read his at prov 32, but I am very very upset that someone who would print up the message for today, would use the message for the scipture. Really look as Galatians 5:26 in KJV or NKJV or NIV ( I feel these are the best 3). the message changes add too many words, etc. We are WARNED not to add, nor take away from His word, and that is a problem with the message, BEWARE, of what we use as Gods Word

  548. Andrea Jones says:

    Thank you for your words of wisdom about being an original. We should never try to live a “cookie cutter” life, but one that honors God and ester so others.

  549. Zoe Hoeppner says:

    Thank you for this! Until recently anytime my daughter was asked what she wanted to be when she grew up her answer was myself but now that she’s been in school those answers are changing to what people think you should be when you grow up …. I think this book will be perfect and helping me and her to remain focused on what God has called us to be an imprinted on our live- originally us

  550. Rebecca Guevara says:

    This speaks right to my heart, not only for myself, but in raising my two very different daughters. One is social and fashionable, the other is introverted and very quiet. One talks, the other does not. How do I raise them and show each of them the love they need without spending too much time and effort on one while neglecting the other. God, give me wisdom and direction and Your love to impress in and on my girls.

  551. April Andrews-Sanford says:

    I desperately need this book!!! We have 3 very strong willed children who are all very different from each other. I love that they are strong willed but it also makes it very difficult finding ways to discipline them. Because they are very different, I also have to find very different ways to affectively get through to them. One way to teach/discipline doesn’t work for them all!!!

  552. Paige Stovall says:

    I love the fresh look at comparison that was given “We can choose courage over copy.” Usually I look compare based on a certain aspect of the other individual not thinking how I am unique and God made me special. Awesome insight for a great new day!!!

  553. Love this! This brings into mind the verse from Psalms that talks about being fearfully and wonderfully made. I never thought about the fact that God does love new things. This is very challenging for me because I don’t like change and it is scary to see who my kids will be. I mean I am still trying to discover who I am and I am 40 years old !!

  554. I desperately needed this message. My teen is not following the path that his father and I have chosen for him. I pray he is following the path that God has chosen for him.

  555. Darrell Gorha says:

    I have five beautiful grandchildren at the moment! Would love to hear your story about growing children in Gods plan!

  556. I was lead to this blog while searching the web and completely forgot what I was originally “googling”. These moments are always great confirmations that God is in full control. I needed the this message! As I have recommitted my heart to God and trust him with everything, he has shown me areas that I need to stop comparing myself and where I am in life in order to find the complete peace and joy I desire. Thank you for trusting him to lead you as we all can glean from each other. I will share with friends and family. Thank you and have a FANTABULOUS DAY!!!

  557. Awesome reflection! I am raising my grandchildren and everyday battle with raising them differently than my children. Although I know I did my best, my older children have much different morals and values than I taught. Thank you for the message. The book would be awesome to win. My grandchildren are gifted and brilliant. Normal is not in our vocabulary.

  558. Cindy Meyer says:

    Hi, I loved this message. I have been a master at yearning to be just like the best of another, while not recognizing what I have been given, by God that they don’t have. I’d love to have this book, for my daughter, who is expecting her first child in May of 2017. Thank you!!

  559. Shehani Peiris says:

    I loved this reminder of being unique.
    I also love that you quoted scripture from the message – the words were different and powerful and it just jumped out at me.

  560. I would love to give a copy of this book to my daughter who is busy raising three small children!!

  561. Joan Chance says:

    This couragous book would be a gift to my daughter with four children. She is a wonderful mother, follows God’s word so thank you for the opportunity to give to her. jc

  562. Loved that devo and would love that book!

  563. Abigail Pritchett says:

    I loved the devotion, comparison is an awful pit to be in. However, I find myself back in the pit all the time and not only with myself but also with my 5 kids.
    Today I left a play group early because my 3 year old was having one of his many melt downs and I always feel like only my kid acts like this and if only he could act normal like the other kids. My son has a form of Autism and relates differently to others and it is really hard to realize he is just a different kid but God has made him unique and special just like each one of us!

  564. Maggie McLemore says:

    God has given you such words of wisdom and the ability to put them in a way that is enjoyable to read! Love this! 🙂

  565. I needed that word today! Thank you

  566. Wow! Just finished lunch with a friend and we both need to be reminded that we are raising originals. So thankful for my children! Would love to win a copy of this book!

  567. This book will be perfect for helping me raise my boys based on their own individual uniqueness and talents. WANT THIS BOOK!!!

  568. Would love to win this book! Thanks for the opportunity!

  569. I love the reminder that we are all originals. I’ll have my own unique way of being a mum and when I finally get to meet my baby, they’ll be designed in a special way to bring glory to God and make a positive impact in this world.That’s my prayer.

  570. Thank you so much. I was once told years ago by a man I dated that I was unique. I initially took offense to it (I was not a believer then) but have over the years learned to embrace that label. However, as much as I thought I embraced that label, I realize after reading this post that I really haven’t. I will be spending more time with the Lord in an effort to see how he sees me so that I can see that in others as well. Thank you again.

  571. Parenting twins who are SO VERY DIFFERENT and praying for the wisdom to know the balance/wisdom/strategy for motivation, expectation, encouragement, empathy/compassion, ability, etc. They are now in school and the struggles on many levels have begun. I’d be a grateful recipient of your book!

  572. Laura Rempel says:

    Would love to win a copy of this book!

  573. Great insight into such a prevalent problem! Thank you.

  574. Jo Ann Martinez says:

    Looks like a great book, would love to win a copy.

  575. I am pregnant with my first, and would love to win a copy of this book!

  576. I want to be an original, who desires the Lord’s will and unique children who fear the Lord and seek Him as well!

  577. ALLISON GOFORTH says:

    JUST what I needed to hear! Thank you!

  578. Jan Runsick says:

    Great reminder!!! And the book sounds amazing…I would love to read it!

  579. Karissa Martin says:

    I have been faced with these struggles a lot recently especially just having my 3rd baby and it is always my biggest hope/wish that I’m raising my children to see that they are each a unique and precious child of God. I would love to win a copy of this book to read and help me with this amazing journey of parenting!

  580. Lindsay Hein says:

    Thank your for this beautiful reminder! I think it has become especially difficult in the age of social media. The more I disconnect from that, the more I find myself connecting to God and understanding His heart for my life!

  581. Love this!

  582. Would love check this out!

  583. I would love to read your book!

  584. Dawn Heisler says:

    Sometimes it is so hard to remember that each child is different and was made an original and I want to mold them in to being like their big brother or someone they are not and I have to step back and thank God that he made them each different and special and thank you for the reminder that they are originals and not to try and make them into xerox copies!

  585. I came across your devotionals today and really enjoyed reading them! They hit so close to home and what we really do in everyday life! As a mother of four small children I really needed to read this! I would love to win a copy of your new book!

  586. Oh My! I cannot wait to read this book! My three kids are as different as night and day and not one of them lives the way the world thinks they should. Embrace the weird! That’s the motto around our house and we are definitely ok being originals!

  587. I love this devotional today. Moms need all of the encouragement we can get in raising our children. Would love to read the book.

  588. I would lo4ve a copy of this book! My kids are about a different in personality as they all look! (A redhead, a brunette, & a blonde-someone once said we have a Neopolitain ice cream!)

  589. Tasha Beck says:

    What an inspiring devotional! I love the verse…”each of us is a original”. My daughter is 6 and my son is 2 1/2 and they are so different to raise! My husband and I talk often about how different they are, which is such a blessing, but does it make it a bit tough when it comes to discipline. Would love to have a copy of this book! 🙂

  590. This convicted me. I’ve lived most of my life copying others and I struggle with this raising my kids. I don’t even know who I am. I question every decision I make and never feel settled. Always wondering what others are doing or even what they talk about with their kids. This is such a weakness for me. I definitely need the lords help.

  591. I would **LOVE** to win this. I so appreciated this devo – I definitely want to raise my girls to be who God made them to be, not what this world wants!

  592. Love this post! Would also love to win.

  593. I need to remember that my oldest (with all his quirks – or what I perceive to be as quirks) is an original.

  594. I agree 100%, but oddly NEED to be reminded often. No one else has ever raised my child, and no one else has ever been in my marriage. Copying is easier because it’s comfortable and predictable. Being an original is a bit harder because we’re walking on untrodden ground. We need to be brave and be who God designed us to be. There is only one me.

  595. Sarah Williamson says:

    Thank you so much for this incredible reminder. It was perfect timing for me to read…in many ways! THANK YOU!!!

  596. Thank you for sharing. I really needed this today. I’m a mother of 4. My eldest & second started school & preschool early this year. I’ve struggled so much to work through the whole copy vs. original. It has been so challenging. Then I’ve realized it’s because I am in the same boat– trying to be a copy & constantly comparing myself. Your post has helped me to start shifting my thinking… still long road ahead… thank you.

  597. Crystal Menard says:

    Thank you for this reminder! What a refreshing read. God bless!

  598. I work with children and parents everyday. If we could all have this perspective of Godly wisdom and Godly originality. Is so important to trust Him with our lives. Jeremiah 29:11. I know what I’m doing. I have it all planned out—plans to take care of you, not abandon you, plans to give you the future you hope for. (MSG)

  599. I love my children and I trust that God’s plan for their life is better than anything I can imagine for them. I remind myself that He created them with their own talents, abilities, and personality. I am so thankful to be their mother. Thank you for this great reminder that our children we’re beautifully and wonderfully made.

  600. Please consider me. Thank you

  601. This is wonderful! Thank you!

  602. Uzo Umeononihu says:

    This is so thought-provoking. I love it.

  603. I need to read this book & be reminded that we are all originals!

  604. Exactly what I needed to hear, right in this moment of doing all those things. Thank you. Thank you for speaking to my tired-mama heart with such truth.

  605. Thank you for writing these devotions.

  606. Jenny Yarbrough says:

    This devotion is exactly what I needed to hear! Thank you!

  607. Love this! It’s so tempting to copy others bc we’re not happy with ourselves. I’ve always struggled with this…I even changed my handwriting in junior high bc I thought another girls was cooler than mine! Now I still fight this battle as a
    mom every day, but I don’t want to pass this issue onto my children. I lived a lot of joyless years hating who I was & trying to copy another. I want my kids to find joy in the freedom to be who God created them to be. Thank you for this article. It was so good.

  608. Tracy Moore says:

    I would love a copy of this book. I am so guilty of this. I work in my son’s schools, and am caught up in this mold that I think my children need to fit into. I have two very loving and caring boys who can be challenging at times. I worry I am being judged by their behaviors and they are too. God please forgive me of this sin and help me embrace the uniqueness of these two gifts you have given me. No one’s opinion of me matters but yours.

  609. Everyone is trying to compete with the “Jones”, these days. People are always trying to be one up on their neighbors, friends or even family. It’s sad. Oh and it’s hard not to fall into the mix sometimes.

  610. I would so love to win this book. I am helping raise my two grandsons and they are so strong-willed. Thank you for this opportunity.

  611. Michelle Lingenfelter says:

    This book would be a great resource for me to encourage my sons who are in middle school. 🙂

  612. What a great reminder to stop playing the comparison game!

  613. Logan Breedlove says:

    I always fine myself telling others how my little boy (2nd child) is “so different” from my older daughter. I usually mention it with a negative connotation after chasing him around or disciplining him. I definitely need guidance with embracing his uniqueness!

  614. Sarah Lakin says:

    I am looking forward to seeing what this book has to say about molding my children into kids that truly love Christ.

  615. Dawn treaster says:

    Thank you for your ministry

  616. Grace. Crapitto says:

    I would love to read this and learn to accept myself as I am and not continually compare myself and all I do to others and continually find myself falling short on all I do.

  617. beth williams says:

    This hit me right in the heart!!! THANK YOU!!! I am always comparing the job I am don’t with my kids to other teens and moms and thinking why can’t I be a parent like her or have a relationship with my kids like she does. Thank you. Beth Williams

  618. Thank you for sharing this message. So often, I compare my parenting style and where my kids are at against another’s and I am ALWAYS worse off than the person I am comparing myself to. This has gotten me into a whole lot of trouble with potty training my oldest, because I pushed her to far to fast! I hate that, but that was the fruit of me being a copy-cat instead of an original and listening to the cue’s. I needed to be reminded of the fact that my children, as well as myself, are uniquely made by God.

  619. Lisa Rivers says:

    My heart was so encouraged by the Probmverbs 31 Devo based on Raising an Original! I would absolutely love to have a copy of the book in my hands to glean wisdom and encouragement t for this task!

Would you like your picture to show up next to your comment? Click here for instructions.

Visit Gravatar.com and create a free account with the email address you use to leave comments on blogs and other websites. Upload the picture you want associated with that email address and you're all set!

Share Your Heart

*

Notify via Email Only if someone replies to My Comment