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Measuring Up
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I am a mother. A wife. A teacher. A sister. A daughter. Each of these roles comes with a set of expectations or rules. Provide the best possible life for your child. Be supportive and nurturing. Be a good example. Make your parents proud of the kind of person they raised. There are books, articles, blogs, and TV channels devoted to helping you be the perfect person or to construct the perfect life. Their checklists, step-by-step instructions, and glossy photo spreads provide a quick-fix “how-to” to become the very best you.

I tend to eat up these cookie-cutter guides to the world. I strive to be as organized, clever, and as successful as they promise I can be if I only follow a few simple steps. The problem is that I never seem to get it as perfectly as it is portrayed. I feel like I have let myself down and those around me when I see dirty dishes in the sink, my patience wearing too thin when a student is struggling, or when I snap at my husband. With each little misstep, I vow to try a little harder but then inevitably fail repeatedly.

Let God Down

The worst feeling is when I realize how much I have let God down. He created me with such high expectations. I was made to be more than a mediocre Christian. I sometimes let myself wallow in a dangerous combination of self-loathing and self-pity.

However, if I take the time to listen, I always hear that still, small voice saying “The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness” (Lamentations 3:23).

Gratefulness to God always overwhelms me; that my God doesn’t view me as I view me. He has so much more planned for me than others’ or even my own expectations. He is willing to lead me to a new life if I trust in Him and stop comparing myself to shallow standards.

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By MiKaela Miler. Copyright © 2014 by GraceNotes. All rights reserved. Use of this material is subject to usage guidelines. Scripture taken from the ENGLISH STANDARD VERSION ®.

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