ReVisited: Less Bitter, More Glitter
Recently, I was thinking about all the changes the Lord has brought about in my life and how those moments prepared me for my current season. While mulling over all the reasons I am grateful to my Heavenly Father, I was reminded of what I call my “Less bitter, More glitter” season and my original “bitter/glitter” moment which happened in October of 2018. It was in that moment that I realized I had allowed my frustrations with current circumstances to change my attitude into a bitter and ungodly mess. In fact, it took me a few months to really process all that the Lord had done but once I had my realization I wrote my “Less Bitter, More Glitter” post which you can check out here. That one moment started a snowball effect over the last two years that has revolutionized my health, happiness and heart.
Let me tell you, 2018 Bailey could not have faced 2020. She would have had a nervous breakdown by April and would most likely have had no friends to help her because she would have been a misery to be around. She wouldn’t have enjoyed, much less, grown during this time of quarantine because she would have been too wrapped up in all that was not going the way she liked it. As I said in my original blog post, my attitude problems came less from actual issues and more from impatience, disappointment and jealousy. Can you imagine how 2018 Bailey would have handled an actual crisis? This was the exact thought that crossed my mind as I was drifting to sleep the other night and I became overwhelmingly grateful that the Lord didn’t leave me to wallow in my pit. Instead, He got a hold of me and began to stretch and grow me into who He has purposed me to be at this moment. So, what have I learned since my light bulb “Less Bitter, More Glitter” moment?
You REALLY can’t control everything in your life and you will kill yourself trying.
By now y’all know I like a good plan and at the beginning of the pandemic I sure tried to have one but man is that not reality! I’ve had to stop killing myself to create a plan for every foreseeable issue and stop beating myself up when my plans go to pot. Back in April of 2019, I did a post on learning to let go because the Lord was really showing me how tightly I was gripping things in my life and let me tell you, I truly thought I was grasping the concept of letting go until now…
You don’t have to be perfect to be valuable.
I’m a two on the Enneagram scale but my one wing is so strong that you might think that is where I belong. My gut reaction is to try and be perfect when possible which is a bit confusing because perfection isn’t possible but that won’t stop me from trying. In fact, I realized that I was often using perfection as a way to “earn” value in other people’s eyes (Hello 1 wing!) but back in October of last year I did a blog post where I spoke on what the Lord was teaching me about chasing perfect and now I am intentional about doing things imperfectly. It sounds bonkers but there are actual moments where I try to enjoy imperfections and if I’m honest, I’m not perfect at it yet!
Beauty is truly in the eye of the beholder.
This one is piggybacking off the perfection lesson… What better time to learn to truth of Psalm 139:14 than in the midst of a global crisis? But that’s basically what has happened because y’all beauty really IS in the eye of the beholder and at some point you’re gonna have to behold yourself and appreciate what the Lord has provided. I spent years thinking I was single because I wasn’t pretty enough to be found attractive and while I know I am definitely not everyone’s cup of tea, I’m learning to view my own beauty, inside and out, through the lens of Biblical truth. See, the reality is not everyone is my cup of tea either but that doesn’t lessen their value or their appeal to someone else so why did I think those rules applied to me? Last month, I did a post on following a silly childhood dream by competing in a virtual beauty pageant and how the Lord taught me to let go of my desires for perfection and appreciate my positive qualities. This lesson has literally given me room to breathe. (Plus, wearing this stinking masks makes it impossible to look beautifully perfect all the time and that’s now okay for me…most of the time.)
Your comfort zone isn’t really comfortable it’s just what you know.
This has been the biggest growth area for me in the last six months as revealed in my June 8th post but man has it been overwhelmingly good and scary! I always thought that I stayed in my little bubble because I was comfortable there and the world outside of that area was uncomfortable. Turns out I wasn’t necessarily comfortable in my bubble but I knew what to expect which made me feel like I was in control and outside that zone was the unknown and the unknown made me more uncomfortable than what the unknown actually contained. So, just like with perfection, I have tried to be intentional in the last few months with doing little things that make me uncomfortable and you know what… they still make me uncomfortable BUT they haven’t killed me and my comfort zone has grown and just like working out a muscle group, I’m becoming stronger in those areas.
Pray boldly then get out of God’s way!
I’ve said it before but I love praying! I know not everyone feels that way but I think it’s because we miss out on the intentionality and boldness that should come with prayer. I did a post back in February about the five things that have revolutionized my prayer life and one of those was to pray boldly with confidence. It can be scary to pray boldly when you know the Lord’s answer may stretch you or lead you outside of your comfort zone but sometimes that is what is needed. I have learned to pray much like the father in Mark 9 by asking not only for help to believe that the Lord will answer my prayer but for the courage to pray for the things that make me uncomfortable. It’s okay to tell the Father that you are scared of His plans or that the unknown scares you but what is not okay is to not talk to Him at all.
In the end, I cannot emphasize enough how thankful I am that I had my moment. Yes, the last two years of lessons prepared me to handle this season of unknowns but the Lord changed my heart so that I’m not just surviving but thriving and I’m excited that the journey is not through. In the past, the Lord has drug me kicking and screaming into new seasons but now I’m looking forward to the next big adventure He has planned. As I said last week, you truly can’t begin to imagine all the Lord has planned for your life. (1 Corinthians 2:9)