One thing I always tell my daughter is that if someone is being mean to her or if we don’t like someone that we should pray for them. Well, I’m putting my money where my mouth is. So, what I decided to do is that anytime when I have bad thoughts about someone…I pray for them.
This has been a great exercise for me to do in my prayer life because when I’m praying for these people that night I HAVE to be positive. I thank God for the positive things they do and pray that He be with them through any obstacles that they may face. I have to look for the good to thank God. When I am in prayer it is really hard to be judgemental about them as well.
Last night, in particular, I was praying and said
We are all your children.
You knew all of us before we were born.
And let me tell you, this is where I got emotional. Realizing that God loves us all equally and that I am no better than them is a very sobering thought. As I was praying with my eyes tightly closed I was thinking about the people I had thought badly of that day. I felt tears welling up in the corner of my eyes. There is something so profound in putting someone you don’t necessarily like or an enemy on a pedestal and asking God to bless them. To put them and their needs above your own and even the ones you love.
Praying for people that I’ve had no positive thoughts about has made me realize that many of us struggle with two feelings.
With the accessibility we have to other’s lives it’s so easy to play the comparison game in every facet of our lives. Comparing our lives with others is what starts the feelings of jealousy. Comparing ourselves to others, especially as women is so so tough as I feel like we, millennial moms, were raised that we can do it all. We can have a great job, be a great wife, be the best mom, throw the best parties, volunteer for every event, cook like a professional chef, and keep a spotless house. When we fall short in many of these areas (me) we become jealous of others who excel in that particular area.
If you find that you struggle with this, like me, first know that God has given us all gifts. One person’s gift may not necessarily be the same as mine and I should not be jealous of others’ gifts or any material items they have.
“Comparison is coveting. Comparison makes me ungrateful. When I want what everyone else has, I am blinded to the blessings right in front of me. Comparison isn’t only the thief of joy; it’s the thief of everything.” – Lara Casey
Instead, if you feel like you are struggling with a particular area we can start by working on ourselves. There are so many great resources where we can learn more about building up our marriages or having more patience with the kids. Let us also focus on the blessings we have. Let us focus and shine a light on what limitations and insecurities we have within ourselves and to ask God to help heal our hearts.
We often judge others on the bad that they do. Isn’t it so easy to point the finger at others’ sin instead of focusing on our own? When we judge others we are leaving our sins in the dark to manifest. How hard is it say write out the things you have done wrong? Have you ever tried it? Have you ever said them out loud? For me, it’s pretty embarrassing as I’m writing this right now. The exact things I’m talking about right now is what we teach our kids not to do and here I am. (What a humbling feeling).
Next time you react in this manner, ask God to guide you to become more like Him, to heal your heart of any hurt or darkness that is making you have these feelings. To help us realize that what we see is only one part of the story and that judging others only hurts us in the long run. To also help us to be better role models for our children in what we teach.