Don't Take It From Me

I’ll be honest with all of you. Sometimes when I sit down to write for the blog, the only thing I can I think is, “I’m a fraud.” Over the course of the week, I’ve taken my stress and frustrations out on my family, I’ve complained about work, I’ve lost my patience, and that’s just scratching the surface. Basically, I feel like I could go day by day and just use my life as a “what not to do” guide. Of all people, why on earth should you listen to me? Well, I’m here to tell you that you shouldn’t!

Obviously, us hens want you to read and find value in what we write, so what do I mean? I’m praying that as you read these words, you look past me and see the one who inspired me to write them.

“For it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure.” Philippians 2:13

I usually try not to speak for others, but I believe that I can speak for all of the women who contribute to Holy Hen House when I tell you that we don’t have all the answers. In fact, I’m the last person to tell you that I have it all figured out. And if you’re anything like me, that is precisely what has stopped you from sharing God’s word with others in the past.

That feeling of inadequacy almost stopped me from sharing my faith as a regular contributor to this blog. It's had me second-guessing advice that I've given to friends. It's had me doubting myself as a mother charged with the spiritual care of two precious little souls. I’ve thought so many times about how I can be the worst billboard ad for Christianity. I don’t always practice what I preach, in fact, I manage to fail over and over again. But the great thing about sharing the need for Jesus in our lives is that you can point to God's words, not your own.

“And we also thank God constantly for this, that when you received the word of God, which you heard from us, you accepted it not as the word of men but as what it really is, the word of God, which is at work in you believers.” 1 Thessalonians 2:13

When people criticize Christians for their ungodly actions, they miss the entire point of what being a follower of Jesus means. We don’t follow Jesus because we think we are righteous people, we follow him because we know that we aren’t. Just because you read God’s word and share it with others, it doesn’t change who you are. We are all still sinful human beings with no hope of salvation on our own.

“For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.” Ephesians 2:8-9

I encourage you to not to let the fact that you're flawed stop you from sharing the message. It is precisely our imperfections that make the case for salvation through Jesus. In reality, the only thing that would make us frauds would be giving the impression that our lives are perfect.

Sharing God's word through the blog over the past few years has been eye-opening and I'm so glad that I decided to take the leap and do it. All of the posts I've written have been like a mirror showing me exactly what I need to work on in my walk with God. So be prepared to read more about my shortcomings, because as long as I'm sharing the word, I'll be be sharing just how desperately I need it as well.

Chief of sinners though I be,
Jesus shed His blood for me;
Died that I might live on high,
Lived that I might never die,
As the branch is to the vine,
I am His, and He is mine.

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No Identity Crisis Here!

I am a horrendous housekeeper.  

A week ago my mother came up to visit, and she did days worth of dishes for me to help me catch up. She also helped me (read: did most of the work to) finally power through the 20 loads of laundry that were bagged up and in my basement from my daughter getting lice twice in the month of November. Yes, 20 loads. Yes, November. I can not seem to stay on top of dishes, or get it into my thick skull that it’s easier to just wash them right after the meal. I don’t own a washer and dryer, but you would still be horrified at how infrequently I get to the laundromat. I could go on.

laundromat

I also really struggle as a disciplinarian.

 

When I do say no to my 2 year old (or try to say no to my 1 year old), I do ok at staying firm and meaning it. The problem is that I rarely actually say no. My kids are “allowed” to throw most of the toys we own, jump on beds, play in the sink, climb whatever won’t fall over and kill them, carry around small objects in their mouths, and play playdough on the living room carpet. Some moms bring their kids over for playdates and just don’t know what to do with themselves.

 

I could give you one hundred million bajillion more things that I’m really not very good at. I could confess moments of weakness and real, personal struggles that would bring you from “It’s not just me!” to “Wow, that’s pretty bad” to “Someone should really talk to her about that”, but I’ll spare you.

 

The point is that I am a far from perfect person. In fact, there is not a single thing in the whole wide world that I do perfectly. I am consistently falling short. There are moments that I am an absolute wreck wallowing in my inability to just get it together, especially when I wander down the scary road of comparing myself to others! (If you find yourself comparing your life to that of others, read this great post by Kelly)!

 

As I write this, though, I don’t feel the defeat and desperation that maybe it sounds like I should. In fact, I feel pretty good. Let me share why.

 

I, Jessica Marie Woller, am a horrendous housekeeper, a struggling disciplinarian, a complainer, neglectful in personal bible study, hypocritically judgemental purchased and won by my Savior, daughter of The King, “drawn with an everlasting kindness”, and heir to salvation.

 

I do not find my identity in my shortcomings or even my strengths, because I have been covered over with a robe of righteousness. It is not because “I’m doing the best I can”, because I’m not even sure that’s always true. I can live in joy because my whole life is not about who I am and what I have done, but who HE is and what HE has done!

 

 

Romans 3: 23-24

 

For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus.

 

 

Ephesians 1:3-14

 

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ. For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love he predestined us for adoption to sonship through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will— to the praise of his glorious grace, which he has freely given us in the One he loves. In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace that he lavished on us. With all wisdom and understanding, he made known to us the mystery of his will according to his good pleasure, which he purposed in Christ, to be put into effect when the times reach their fulfillment—to bring unity to all things in heaven and on earth under Christ.

 

In him we were also chosen, having been predestined according to the plan of him who works out everything in conformity with the purpose of his will, in order that we, who were the first to put our hope in Christ, might be for the praise of his glory. And you also were included in Christ when you heard the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation. When you believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God’s possession—to the praise of his glory.

Tomorrow morning I’m going to wake up, and instead of floundering in my failures, I’m going to press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 3:14) I may even employ a few of my God-given strengths to help me!

 

 

 

 

 

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