“Honey you’re beautiful just the way you are.”
“You HAVE to say that; you’re my MOM.”
We’ve seen this script play out in movies, sitcoms, and our own lives. No matter how well intended and genuine a mother’s encouragement, it’s never enough to truly heal the wounds of insecurity in a daughter’s heart. Why is that?
Man’s reassurance is never enough because we were made for something divine. We were made to be satisfied by the Word of God.
You see, the battle against The Knot of jealousy, comparison, and shame is, at its core, a battle against lies.
I’d be happier if only I had what she has.
If I were like that girl, I’d be more loved. More wanted. More cherished.
If my life looked like that, I’d finally be content.
She is more valuable, more special, more pure.
When we compare ourselves to others, we open our heart to hearing these lies and digesting them as truth.
In fighting this battle, we must be prepared to combat the lies with truth.
I wish I could say that your mom’s “Honey, you’re perfect,” is enough to combat those lies. I wish I could tell you that your husband’s compliments and your best friend’s encouragement would be all that you need. I want to nod my head and say your professor’s praise, your mentor’s approval, and that cute guy who swiped right will satisfy your insecurities.
But it’s never going to be enough.
Deep down I think you know this too. You’re aware by now that no amount of human words will quench the thirst for love and security that we so desperately need to combat the lies brought on by comparison. If those words actually worked, you wouldn’t be reading this right now.
This human approval, rooted in fickle opinion and well-intended, yet imperfect love might bring temporary comfort…but like a plastic Band-Aid that wavers under a stream of water, it won’t last. Only eternal Truth can heal the deep sting of lies.
This Truth we need to fight this battle is found in the Bible, the Holy Word of God. It is so important to submerge ourselves in it day in and day out if we ever want to rise above jealousy victorious.
Even Jesus needed the Word of God when he walked the Earth as a man.
He used the scriptures of the Old Testament to fight his own battle when he was tempted in the wilderness. Check out Matthew 4:1-11 (emphasis added).
Jesus Is Tested in the Wilderness
Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. After fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry. The tempter came to him and said, “If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become bread.”
Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.’”
Then the devil took him to the holy city and had him stand on the highest point of the temple. “If you are the Son of God,” he said, “throw yourself down. For it is written: “‘He will command his angels concerning you, and they will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.’”
Jesus answered him, “It is also written: ‘Do not put the Lord your God to the test.’”
Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their splendor. “All this I will give you,” he said, “if you will bow down and worship me.”
Jesus said to him, “Away from me, Satan! For it is written: ‘Worship the Lord your God, and serve him only.’” Then the devil left him, and angels came and attended him.
The highlighted pieces are all excerpts of the book we now call Deuteronomy. Jesus knew the scriptures and he used them in his battle against the adversary. What an example! We can do this too!
When you start to believe that you’re less valuable than the next girl, and you wonder why you can’t be more like her, you can open your Bible and transform the script in your heart with Truth. The Bible says you are fearfully and wonderfully made. You were knit together in your mother’s womb with love and purpose and value before you were born. God thought of you before you were even conceived and decided it would be good for you to be born. Unlike human opinions, these Truths about you cannot be debated. But you won’t know these truths if you don’t open your Bible.
In this battle you can rely on the waxing and waning shallow opinions of mankind, or you can believe the firm, everlasting, true word of God. The choice is yours.
But I have to tell you something that may be hard to hear: The word of God isn’t going to change your life if you aren’t studying it consistently and intentionally. Googling “encouraging scriptures” whenever you feel down isn’t going to bring you through battle. Only opening your Bible on Sunday’s isn’t going to do very much for you. Reading just Psalms or chapter 8 of Romans isn’t going to sustain you through the struggle of jealousy.
You’ve got to be in the Word consistently and intentionally. That doesn’t have to feel like homework though. Reading the Bible can actually be an act of worship! And it’s pretty difficult to dislike yourself and envy others when you’re busy worshipping the God who made you.
Here are some practical action steps you can take to start treasuring the Word:
Commit to Reading Everyday: Even 5-10 minutes a day can transform your heart. The First 5 App from Proverbs 31 is an amazing resource for getting those 5 minutes in every day!
Read a Devotional: A devotional is a great way to supplement your Bible reading and remind you to get in the word every day. One of my favorite devotionals is Jesus Calling by Sarah Young.
Memorize Scripture: Find a piece that resonates with you and hide it in your heart so that you can use it when you need it most! For my personal, 3-Step Strategy of how to memorize, click Here.
Join a Bible Study or Small Group: Community provides a great opportunity for discussion and accountability in reading the Bible (amongst other benefits, like an Army of sisters)!
I hope you can take one of the action steps above to get yourself in the Word this year! It can be challenging at times, but the benefits are endless. Like Jesus, you can walk out of the wilderness of lies and deceit, full of victory and joy, one step closer to conquering the battle!
With Love & Freedom,