This weekend I went to a Women's Football workshop down at OSU in Corvallis and as you may have guessed, it was all women. About 200 women ranging from ages 18-70ish. It was super fun, went all day long and was a great time with my mother-in-law Cheryl and sister-in-law Jodi.
Here's the confession: I'm a sizer-upper. I didn't know this about myself until just this weekend but I realized it after I walked in to the sign in area and started sizing up all the women around me. Who is older, who is younger? Who is fatter, who is thinner? Who is taller, who is shorter? AND, to make things even worse, I was placing myself higher than them as I placed myself on the chart with them. "Well I'm chubbier than her but she's not all that cute." Oh, she's cute but I'm younger." I'm so ashamed to admit this to you but I was even more ashamed to confess it to God.
Its a humbling thing to have to tell the Creator you judged His work unfairly. And not only did I judge it unfairly but I really have no business judging it all. Romans 14:10 reminds me, "But you, why do you judge your brother? Or you again, why do you regard your brother with contempt? For we will all stand before the judgment seat of God.". Ugh.
I began thinking about what it would be like if I had walked in to that room and saw what God saw. What a completely different and really beautiful perspective to walk in and see 200 women who are dearly loved and treasured by the King. The Father who made them lovingly looks upon them with adoration; they are His daughters who He has died for and made co-heirs with Christ. "The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God's children. Now if we are children, then we are heirs—heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory" (Romans 8: 16-17).
I'm certain that if I could see what God sees I would have seen they were His special creation but I also would have seen that they were all broken in some way, just like me. Isn't it my own brokenness that would cause me to be so insecure in myself that I would have to judge others harshly so that I would feel better about myself? Maybe I would have seen the woman who was just as insecure about her appearance as I was. Maybe I would have seen the woman who was so happy to get out of the house because she and her husband fight all the time. Maybe I would have seen the woman who was fighting cancer, or the woman who just lost her job or the woman who has lost her way. I don't know what these ladies' circumstances are but I know we are all broken, we're all hurting in some way and we all need Jesus.
I'm disappointed and ashamed in the way my thought pattern went on Saturday morning but I'll be honest, I've been asking God to show me blind spots and He did. 1) I have a tendency to be judgemental and 2) it comes from a place of my own insecurities. Here's the best part: I am forgiven and get a clean slate. Secondly, God hasn't given up on me. When I asked Him to show me my blind spots He didn't blow me off and tell the Holy Spirit, "Don't bother, she's hopeless". He's keeping His promise, "He Who began a good work in you will continue until the day of Jesus Christ, right up to the time of His return, developing that good work and perfecting it and bringing it to full completion in you" (Philippians 1:6).
Could you use a reminder today that God hasn't given up on you yet either? Maybe you're a catty hag like me and need forgiveness and a fresh start; try praying this "Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me" (Psalm 51:10). Maybe you're reading this and identifying more with the broken part. If so, let the Psalmist remind you "He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds" (Psalm 147:3). And couldn't we all use a reminder of God's astounding love for us? It just never gets old: "Your love, O LORD, reaches to the heavens, Your faithfulness to the skies" (Psalm 36:5).
I love Paul's prayer for the church of Ephesus and I pray it today for you, "And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God" (3: 17-19).