Matt and I are both the kind of people that truly enjoy the real this life brings. Our favorite pictures are always the candid shots because those are the ones where you get to see someone’s genuine personality and the real relationships. They’re not posed or edited. They’re raw and real and that’s the beauty in them. When people are just who they are. When we just get to simply be.
Some of my favorite Candid photos:
Something that God has laid on my heart for a while now and just continues to come back again and again is the vain game of comparison, competition and a false pursuit of perfection that women in my generation seem to be chasing these days. Or maybe this has always been a problem and I just notice it now because it’s my generation that seems to be in the throws of the battle, but I feel like He has made me keenly aware of the lie that is being sold around me to myself and to other women; that perfection is attainable. That being perfect is better than being real. That if you pretend long enough those around you will actually buy the fake that you’re trying so desperately to sell them and start to think that you are real.. that you’re “real” is perfect. That if you act like, look like or do the things like that girl you admire so much that you could be a better version than her.
But this couldn’t be farther from the truth.
I think this is something we all know but we just need a reminder of from time to time because it’s a lie that is sold so heavily to us all.
So here’s the truth for anyone who needs a reminder – Perfection isn’t real. That competition you have going in your head is one-sided because there is no comparisons to be made. The beauty of it all is that God has made us all beautiful. He has hand stamped each of us with His image and that is what makes us lovely – we are each His image bearers, and we are each unique. Not one of us is meant to be like the other. That’s what makes us each special. Not one of us is meant to be perfect, and that’s why we each need Jesus.
I know enough women who strive for perfection and it runs them raged because it is an unattainable goal. It’s a mirage. The pursuit of perfection is like the promise of water that a mirage gives you in a desert. You think it’s possible but just when you reach out to take a drink you realize it was never within your grasp because for something to be within your reach it has to be real. It’s a sad and exhausting existence to live your life trying to be something you were never meant to be. Trying to be the best. Trying to outdo. Trying to be perfect.
The fact is we all have fallen short of the glory of God. We have all failed, sinned, made mistakes.. whatever you want to name it. It doesn’t matter what the person next to you is trying to sell you on, none of us, not one is perfect. We all need to be forgiven. We all need to give grace to others.. and most importantly we need to give grace to ourselves. Jesus gave us the grace to be forgiven of our mistakes, so why do we go around acting as if we don’t have any?! If He accepts us flaws and all, then why don’t we accept ourselves? Is it possibly our pride and insecurity that keeps us from admitting our “oops” moments after we’ve been forgiven? That keeps us trapped in the very thing He wants to set us free from, perfection.
I truly believed if we could see ourselves the way Jesus see us we would have more self love instead of self hate and we would stop trying to be the things were not. We would stop trying to cover up the things we wished we could hide and instead we would accept ourselves for who we are and love the real instead of pursue the fake.
The truth is we all deserve better than that.
My husband and my daughter – my family – they deserve better than that.
Annabelle deserves a mother that she can rely on and look up to. A mother that will not change the rules on her by telling her to love herself for who God made her to be, but then turn around and not model that same self love and acceptance for her.
Matt deserves a wife that he knows isn’t just trying to do the next right thing so that she can impress or out do others so she can feel liked and accepted in her insecurities. But rather a wife that her heart is set on pleasing The Lord and no one else.
They deserve to know me at my truest, realest, rawest form. They deserve the woman God intentionally created me to be. The woman He specifically designed with all her quirks, God given abilities and hand picked personality traits that make me, me. To be the woman God chose to be Matt’s wife and to be Annabelle’s momma. To be the one that He destined to put in their lives to love them.
And I deserve better then that too. I would rather be genuine and be truly loved by those who know me and accept me for who I am, the woman God intends me to be and is shaping me into everyday then to be seen or viewed as “perfect” by others because perfect is fake. The truth is perfect isn’t real and therefore no one can truly love perfect because to truly love someone unconditionally means to know them, flaws and all, and still choose them just as they are today, as well as who they will be tomorrow.
And that’s why I choose not to strive for perfection but instead choose to strive for genuine. Because that’s what the people I love deserve.
Much love & prayer,