I read something on social media last week that had me fired up. It actually hurt one of my dear friends and shook her up. How she handled the criticism, which is unfortunately part of life, made me so unbelievably proud of her because she is on the frontlines of Women’s ministry, well known, and longs to see women set free to just be who God intended them to be. I get it, social media is a beast, you can either use it as a tool or it will use you. Either way, we have a choice to make on how we use our platform and how we honor Christ with our voice. We are all divinely fashioned by a God who created us to function uniquely in the body of Christ. And when you publicly bash someone or call them out…you are talking bad about God’s baby.
I have this community of blogger sisters and friends in leadership that I absolutely love and feel a connection with them because we are all in this together. I don’t feel anything remotely competitive with them because that’s not at all what this is about. It’s not about us; it’s about being the light and being good at that. We are much stronger and effective when we are united and isn’t that the point?
These sisters of mine are bleeding on paper and spilling their guts because deep inside of them is a fire shut up in their bones and a calling that scares the crap out of them. And it should. What God has asked us to do is walk uncharted territories and use our jacked up, broken stories to show others that God can use anyone to change this world one broken heart at a time. We are all painfully aware of our flaws and would rather not be on a pedestal. So, I rally around them, promote their books and what they are doing in life because I’m a fan. But most importantly, I am their over-protective sister. I fiercely want them to succeed and I will cry with them when the enemy hurls ugly darts at them. But what breaks my heart more than anything is when I see my sisters pulling each other’s hair and being ugly. We are better than this and the last time I checked, this is not Junior High. If ever there was a time to lock shields and hold hands in this bloody battle, it’s now. I watch the news and see a world that needs us to focus on what really matters instead of infighting and pointing fingers.
For those of you comparing each others gifts and feeling like you don’t measure up, please know that this a tactic of the enemy who loves to cause discord and disunity in the body. It’s his biggest trick and distraction because he knows if he can’t get you to swing on wrecking balls butt-naked and partying like it’s 1999…he can cripple you with comparison and criticism that is just as much of a time waster as a trip to the world of rebellion. What would happen if we stopped trying to fit a certain mold and went on a mission to do our part instead?
Our vision has to be bigger than we are and to make this happen we need each other. We need people that are stronger and wiser and we need to listen to them instead of phasing them out of service, the workplace, and church. If you want to know when I stopped being intimidated by women who are more successful and smarter than me…it was when I let some older women verbally spank me from time-to-time and mentor me. I needed what they had to offer and I still do. I’m nothing without them. If I’m completely honest with you, I would much rather hear from a 50-something, or older, who is killing it and more beautiful than she’s ever been because she knows what really matters in life, not someone afraid of aging squeezing into skinny jeans who is terrified that she’s no longer relevant and useful. Everyday is a battle and we are nothing without each other. Maybe it’s time to stop comparing and join forces.
As long as Moses held up his hands, the Israelites were winning, but whenever he lowered his hands, the Amalekites were winning. When Moses’ hands grew tired, they took a stone and put it under him and he sat on it. Aaron and Hur held his hands up–one on one side, one on the other–so that his hands remained steady till sunset. (Ex 17:11-12 NIV)
Right now we are all tired from fighting and we need someone to help our hands remain steady till sunset. Life is about taking turns, the ebbs and flows of life and timing; it’s about knowing when to lead and when to follow. The worst thing we can do is covet another person’s role and calling. The second is to rip a person to shreds for doing what God has asked them to do and diminish and be jealous of their light. What would have happened if Joshua and Hur didn’t hold up the hands of their weary leader? What if they were too busy tearing Moses down instead of helping him? Those who are great at “holding their leaders hands up” will one day be entrusted with so much more.
What you have to offer is exactly what God wants to unleash revival in a world that desperately needs hope. Stop pulling hair and being ugly, that’s not who you are. You fit and you’re needed and useful. Use your platform and your voice; don’t let it use you.
Loving you fiercely,
Your over-protective sis~ Jennifer