Explain Yourself! Actually, Don't.
As soon as this blog post came to my mind I pictured the famous Ricky Ricardo saying to his wife Lucy, "You've got some splainin' to do!" If you've never seen I Love Lucy I am going to need you to stop reading and go watch at least one episode of it because it is a classic. Truth be told, you won't ever finish reading this blog post because you will be hooked on it. I digress!
The heart of the issue...
Do you feel like you have to explain yourself to other people? Or explain your decisions and reasonings for everything to them? I know I can't be the only person who does this.
I am not entirely sure when I started feeling like I had to explain every decision I made to people. One thing that I do know is that it is a really exhausting insecurity that has plagued me for years. You would think that I grew up in a really strict family where I wasn't allowed to do anything. Or that I was always getting into trouble and had to do a lot of explaining. Neither of those scenarios were the case, at all! I was a really well-behaved teenager (true story). I am not bragging, but I honestly never really gave my mom a reason to not trust me as a teenager.
This insecurity surfaced in my life as a teenager who felt like she needed to have her entire life planned out. When someone would ask me what my plans were after high school I would immediately go into my rehearsed spiel on how I was going to go to a Christian college, get a degree in either Christian counseling and/or Spanish, build my career, get married, and have children all in that "Perfect" order. I wouldn't just say that I was planning on going to college. I felt like I had to explain my every choice down to the color of the paint on the walls in my future house. Talk about exhausting!
Then when I decided to get married at the young age of 19 I felt like I had to prove myself and my reasoning for getting married. It doesn't help that your excitement as a young engaged women gets met with skepticism. *Sigh* Getting married young isn't popular in our culture today and the decision to marry young is sadly, sometimes met with a lot of scoffing from naysayers.
Even when I had my first child I felt like I had to explain why I chose to stay home or why I chose to bottle feed or why I chose to do anything for any reason. I wasn't confident in my decisions as a young mama so I thought that by explaining myself it would help ease some of my trepidation.
My husband always jokingly reminds me that I have a disclaimer for everything that I say. I struggle with just telling him how I feel or why I am doing something without breaking out my ten slide Powerpoint. I wonder why I am tired all of the time? Most likely because I don't let myself be confident in my decisions and waste a ton of mental energy explaining myself.
Lately, God has really shown me that He is the only person that I need to worry about pleasing and guess what? He already knows my heart and my motives and why I am doing what I am doing. I don't even have to explain myself to Him because He already knows. Sure, I tell Him my heart's desire and ask Him to forgive me for the many times I fail Him, but He already knows what I am thinking, what I was thinking yesterday, and what I will be thinking about tomorrow. What a comfort!
Jeremiah 17:10 says, "I the Lord search the heart, I try the reins, even to give every man according to his ways, and according to the fruit of his doings."
I have found that the reason we feel like we have to explain ourselves is because we have become too comfortably acquainted with the insecurity of wanting approval. We feel like we have to explain ourselves in order to be accepted. In today's society, the approval monster is always running rampant. If you don't live your life by popular demand then it is not good enough and you aren't accepted. Have you or I ever stopped to think about how silly that is? Who makes those insane standards and why do they have a say in our lives? It is a tough pill to swallow but it is so true and until we accept the fact that we have that insecurity we won't ever kick it to the curb. I want us to kick it to the curb and let the trash truck take it off to the dump for good!
What we have to remember is that our lifestyle, goals and dreams are OURS and they are OKAY to have.
As long as you're living a life that pleases God and asking Him to direct your steps, you can breathe a huge sigh of relief. God places specific dreams in our heart for a reason and we can't let the opinion of others overshadow what God has impressed upon our hearts.
"As long as you're living a life that pleases God and asking Him to direct your steps, you can breathe a huge sigh of relief. God places specific dreams in our heart for a reason and we can't let the opinion of others overshadow what God has impressed upon our hearts."
We don't have to explain our life, choices, or dreams to anyone! If God is calling you to step out and trust Him in faith even if it's going to change your life radically, do it! Do it with the confidence that only Christ can give you, friend!
While on earth, Jesus didn't exactly take the well-beaten path... not even by a long shot. He traveled by foot preaching and teaching to large crowds. He told people that they were sinners but that He would be their Savior if only they trusted in Him. He was around those who the rest of the world shunned and was often found rebuking the religious crowd for appearing godly on the outside but on the inside they were wicked. Wow! Jesus, our loving Savior who died for OUR sins, was found ministering in places that we would never dare visit and with people that, if we're being honest, we wouldn't associate ourselves with.
The path God has you on may look crazy to the world but He has a plan far greater than what other's think of you or your lifestyle. We, as followers of Christ, should strive to live differently as we aren't living for ourselves. We are to live for Christ and follow the instructions He has given us. It may not be popular or full of worldly gain, but living a life to please Christ will reap an abundance of heavenly blessings.
If you're hesitant to do what God has told you to do and live a life that may or may not be popular amongst those in your corner, you need to obey God as He truly knows what is best even when it seems quite the contrary. If you have people in your corner who are encouraging you to follow God's calling then you should thank God for those people as that is so important to have. If the people in your corner are not encouraging you to follow God and/or uplifting you then you need to find new people to fill your corner.
Go forward knowing that you don't have to explain yourself, friend! Be who God created you to be and don't waste another moment of your life worrying about the rest of it.