“I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Marvelous are Your works, And that my soul knows very well.” Psalm 139:14 (NKJV)
I am a slow, lingering sort of person. My children lovingly and laughingly refer to me as the tortoise (as in, “The Tortoise and the Hare”). And while I laugh along because I do dearly love to laugh, I have often thought to myself, Maybe I should be more like the hare.
My daughter, on the other hand, is a “hare.” She can get lots of stuff done (and done well) in a short amount of time. I find myself in awe of her in a “gee, I wish I could be more like that” sort of way.
And while admiring the gifts God gave her is lovely in itself, there is a fine line separating admiration and comparison. Admiration can see the beauty in someone’s differences while continuing to see the value in my own. Comparison says, That’s better than what I've got, so I would be better off in her shoes.
I have found myself in both camps.
One day, my daughter suggested I watch a TV show that had become a recent favorite of hers (meaning she had watched all the seasons at least twice). I almost always say “no thanks” to shows that will require me to watch so many seasons. But something in me said “yes” to this one.
A few nights later, I watched the first episode. And about halfway in, the world around me stopped as a phrase was spoken that would change my whole perspective on me.
A mother was comforting her daughter and said lovingly to her, “Be you. Live life at your own pace.”
Pause … Rewind … Repeat. I did this three times before the words sank in. I knew God was speaking directly to me.
Be you, Kelly. Live life at your own pace.
He was affirming me. Affirming that He had made me this way on purpose. And that His creation was beautiful.
“I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Marvelous are Your works, And that my soul knows very well.” (Psalm 139:14)
I am reminded of this verse when I think of many moments as a little girl with my own mom, who is a “hare.” I would take my mom’s face in both of my hands and turn it toward me. With that gesture, I was telling her something — to be fully present with me in this moment.
She remembers this, too, and fondly. It reminded her to slow down once in a while and just be — something that came naturally to me but not to her. God made my mom the way she is, and He made me the way I am. We complement each other and remind each other to enjoy the beauty of the way God made us.
The way I’m made is my gift and my strength. It is valuable and worth protecting.
How do I protect it?
I don’t apologize for it when it takes the form of slowness or simplicity.
I nurture it.
I value it out loud for everyone to hear and see: “This is how God made me. Isn't it lovely? I am so happy He made me this way.”
And in doing so, instead of comparing, we lean into one another by listening and learning and loving who we are.
Our key verse is simple, straightforward and true. He who is worthy of all praise has made each of us in His likeness, created to be worthy.
Maybe it’s time we believe it.
Dear Lord, I often feel as though I don’t measure up to the standard of who I “should” be. I forget that I am not made to be a clone of those around me, that I am created uniquely on purpose and for a purpose. Help me to love who You created me to be, to see every detail as valuable. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
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FOR DEEPER STUDY
Jeremiah 1:5, "Before I formed you in the womb I knew you; Before you were born I sanctified you; I ordained you a prophet to the nations." (NKJV)
Psalm 150:6a, “Let everything that has breath praise the LORD.” (NKJV)
Is there an element of your personality or gifting that causes you to feel less-than? If so, how might you look at it differently in light of our key verse?
How might falling into the comparison trap limit your overall perspective on God's creation?
We’d love to hear from you! Share your thoughts in the comments.
© 2022 by Kelly Anne Burns. All rights reserved.
What We Believe
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