We’ve all heard the phrase, “I’m my own worst critic.” Many of us have probably even said it. In the last few months I have begun to be a pretty bad critic of myself. I didn’t want to be that person who judged other people for their actions, so I resorted to judging myself and my own thoughts and choices. Now, my judgment of myself has not been a result of some huge thing I did or because I turned from God, but I have judged myself for not being a good enough, radical enough, on fire enough, Christian. I know, it sounds stupid right? Yet, here I am realizing the way I have come to think of myself. Instead of seeing where I’m at right now as a season of growth and learning, I have begun to see it as a season that seems like I have put everything in reverse. I have begun to look at others and say to myself “That person, they’ve got it. They’re really doing something awesome for God. They’re life is so on fire. They just seem to always get it right. I wish I could be like that.” That last line right there is where I need to catch myself. As Roosevelt once said, “comparison is (indeed) the thief of joy.” Those words have definitely played out in my very walk with Christ.
I have allowed myself to compare my growth and walk with Christ to others’. I have allowed it to cloud my thinking, to make my view of myself lower. I set goals in my life, and when I fail I am hard on myself. I made a decision and followed through with it and then a month later I realize how stupid that decision was, and I think, 'God why did you let me do that?' How could I have been so naïve? I am so selfish. Will I ever get it right? I have become my own worst critic in these moments. I start to question my own ability to discern where God is and isn’t leading me.
As I’m even writing this now, tears are starting to fill my eyes. Why? Because I have lived with the lie that I’m not good enough. I have believed it. I have come to God ashamed that I still haven’t learned yet. I’m still making stupid decisions. I have believed that I’m not a good enough Christian. That I’m not someone who others can come to with their problems because I’m still working out mine. These lies made me begin to believe that God was angry with me.
But he isn’t. Instead all I hear him tell me is I LOVE YOU. I AM PROUD OF YOU.
He doesn’t place shame on me. He doesn’t say, “I can’t believe you Kaitlin. You still haven’t learned this yet? You’re running out of trys. If you haven’t gotten it by now, there’s no hope.”
No he doesn’t say that. Those are all lies from the enemy trying to convince us to give up. To keep us from running after God and to keep moving forward.
It won’t do me any good to beat myself up over my choices and for having to keep coming back to God saying I still haven’t learned how to ______________(fill in the blank with whatever you’re struggling with). God in all His mercy takes our hand and leads us back to the start and says, I am with you. Walk with me child.