Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Reality Check

There are some hefty run-on sentences in this post.  So, y'know, prepare yourself.


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Some days, I'm productive.

Some days I get up at a reasonable hour and I "have a good devo" (what a ridiculous phrase) and I eat a good breakfast and I attack my schoolwork and I help out around the house (and thereby actually move a bit, dontcha know) and I take my brother to sports practice and I get my music responsibilities done in a timely fashion and I respond to blogging comments and emails and I write a blog post and I comment on other people's blog posts and I catch up on Once Upon a Time while I'm at it because I'm super behind and Must Make Headway and I finally change my bedding to flannel sheets and I make crafts and laminate them and then later I watch something with my parents because #qualitytime and I read Peter Pan or The Help before bedtime because experts say that it's better for a screen to not be the last thing you do before going to sleep and I get to bed at a semi-reasonable hour and voilà, I have done this day well.

Other days I sleep in till an hour that I shall not name because I'm not yet sanctified enough to be willing to sacrifice my pride to such an extent and I don't read any of my Bible and I eat pretzel crackers for breakfast and I stay in my pajamas until I finally shower at like 3:00 and I do my school somewhat sluggishly and get distracted by "quick email checks" and I complain about doing my musical practices and I don't do any housecleaning and I stress about my future because how do I do money and college and I spend the entire day on my rear end and too much time in front of the computer and then I freak out because what am I doing to the body God gave me and I stay up until midnight and I don't do any reading before bed which means I'm going to sleep less soundly and why haven't I managed my time better today or been a better Christian or done anything with my liiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiife?!?!?!

What it takes me a while to realize some days is that I am just as worthwhile a person when I get squat done as when I do mountains of awesome things.  God loves me the same yesterday, today and tomorrow.  

For those of you who, like me, often base your self-worth and the way God feels about you on what you do or don't do -- and I know you're out there -- what do you say we try to stop together?  What do you say we start committing to purposefully calling Satan's bluffs?  I've a feeling it's more important than either of us realizes.


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Btw, if any of you do have a tendency towards unmerciful perfectionism with yourself -- or even if you don't -- I highly, HIGHLY recommend David A. Seamands' book, Healing for Damaged Emotions.  I'm not trying to "be a shrink" or anything, but I discovered it recently and people, it is GOOD.   

26 comments:

  1. Oh my gosh, this is me so much!
    I am so glad I'm not the only one.
    Love your blog!

    -Lia
    catholicgirlstuff.blogspot.com

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    1. Lia, it is so great to know we're not alone in this! It's difficult to not fall for Satan's lie of us being "the only ones" who struggle with a certain issue . . . when in reality God says that there is nothing new under the sun and that no temptation has seized us except what is common to man.

      Thank you so much!! That's so kind of you!

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  2. Ahhhh, Olivia I both relate to this and found it Highly Amusing. Because I can relate to it. I'm not laughing at you. :P

    This part especially: "Other days I sleep in till an hour that I shall not name because I'm not yet sanctified enough to be willing to sacrifice my pride to such an extent." HAHAHAHA. I feel you!!!

    I've struggled with this quite a bit myself. I want to SAY I've gotten better, but I still have my days and moments. ;) I've found that I tend to easily get overwhelmed and if I have a lot to do and I'm not getting it done well....I start feeling very anxious. That's not a good thing.

    I've found that carving out time just to do something I love (reading a book, watching a movie, drawing etc.) helps me relax and feel more peaceful. Sometimes I'll have super productive days, but if I don't do anything that makes me happy I still feel unsatisfied. :(

    And ooh yes, Bible reading. I've been trying REALLY hard lately to read my Bible and pray every morning because honestly, it DOES make a difference in my life. I've found myself to be significantly more peaceful and happy on the days where I make God a priority over emails or blogging or chores or ANYTHING.

    Of course there are still days where I utterly fail, but as I said, I'm trying. ;) God IS graceful, and He's always there to pick me back up again. Even when I feel like I don't deserve it. :(

    Anyways this was a great post, dear friend. I will definitely join you in continuing to mold our lives around God and how He wants us to live out our days. I think this culture makes us feel like we ALWAYS have to be getting something done and be super busy, but personally I find that a really dangerous mindset. We're shouldn't worry about the future and we shouldn't worry about getting a, b, and c done within an hour. One thing I like to remind myself when I'm feeling overwhelmed is that even if I do NOTHING "productive" on a certain day, as long as I'm loving God and loving other people, that's really all He expects of me. :)
    (Not that I'm saying we SHOULDN'T get things done, of course. Rather, God and people come before anything else. :))

    Okay, NOW I'm done. Sorry for this rambling comment!

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    1. Haha, I quite understand xD

      Hahaha, I liked that part myself: the struggle is very real :P

      Your thoughts on this subject were really helpful to me, personally: "One thing I like to remind myself when I'm feeling overwhelmed is that even if I do NOTHING "productive" on a certain day, as long as I'm loving God and loving other people, that's really all He expects of me. :)" < < THAT!!!! That is so good. Thank you for that reminder! Also, this: "I think this culture makes us feel like we ALWAYS have to be getting something done and be super busy, but personally I find that a really dangerous mindset." That, too, is an excellent point that I need to keep in mind.

      I know, making time to do something enjoyable in a day is also really helpful -- recently, joking in this post aside, I've been discovering that I do often feel more "restful" when I take a few moments to relax with a book in my room before bed. :P Oh, I want to see more of your drawing! I have a feeling it's awesome :D

      "...days where I make God a priority over emails or blogging or chores or ANYTHING." Ouch, but YES. So true.

      Amen! He's "kind and compassionate", even when we don't deserve it :)

      Thank you so much for "this rambling comment"; I really appreciate it!

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    2. Aww, really? I'm glad some of my thoughts helped you out, too. :)

      Thanks! :D I may share more of my art on the blog sometime. I appreciate your wanting to see it!!

      Heehee, glad you liked my rambling. ;)

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    3. "Really, really." ;D

      Of course! I remember you did that picture of Cinderella '15 back during Heidi's Cinderella week, and it was lovely :D

      Haha, always ;)

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  3. Yesterday was one of those days where I knew that I had a million things to do, but I didn't want to do any of them, and I just wanted to lay in bed and watch Netflix. WhICH WAS KIND OF REALLY WEIRD because I rarely feel that way. At one point, I was crying, telling myself that I was a lazy human who should just get my life together. This post is spot on. We are vastly loved by a magnificent Creator who loves us no matter what we do. :D

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    1. Laura, I FEEL YOU. (Honestly, though, I have those days -- ahem -- rather often.) Awwww, girl, that is SOOOO not true -- you are an AWESOME human who already HAS her life together simply by virtue of her faith in Jesus Christ. And He Is Pleased With You. :)

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  4. I LOVE THIS POST!! Seriously, Olivia, this was great! It's crazy how relatable this is.

    Oh, but don't you just love those productive days? When you feel like you're on the top of the world! :D It's true, though, they're certainly not easy to keep up day in and day out, week after week. But you're so right! God's love toward doesn't change according to our changing circumstances. His feelings toward us do not shift with our shifting and inconsistent ways. He's constant. All the time. Through everything. Our worth does not lie within ourselves but in Him alone! Thank you for that reminder!! *hugs*

    (And hey! You got that book recommendation in here! You go, girl! ;))

    ~Miss March

    P.S. Oh, and I just wanted to say. This part made me laugh. "...because I'm not yet sanctified enough to be willing to sacrifice my pride to such an extent." Haha. I relate to that, too! Love you, friend!! :D

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    1. Thanks a bunch, Miss March! I'm so glad it was relatable and enjoyable :D

      YES I DO. They really are great days :) We just -- need to not base our worth on those days . . . which, as you know, is difficult sometimes xD

      Amen, sister! Beautiful words <3 *hugs back*

      (Yes! Have you read that book?)

      p.s. Hahahaha . . . quite . . . yes xD Much love!

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    2. Yes! Enjoy those days when they come, but don't base your happiness upon them, or as you said, your worth. So true, my friend! (But, yup. It definitely can be a struggle sometimes.)

      (No, I've never read it. I just know you told me in an email that you were reading it and wanting to recommend it to your friends, so I was like, hey! You did it! ;))

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  5. YES Y-E-S- YES YES YES YESSSSSSSSSSS.

    Just, yes.

    Amen, amen and amen.


    Kbye.


    Alright, I need to write SOMETHING intelligible. Um... "have a good devo"? I've never heard of that phrase, but oh my, what a horrendous one. :P

    I relate to this a lot. It's SO me. You are NOT alone! And the conclusion you drew and the message - YES. God loves us the same, no matter how productive or unproductive we are. It's like the quote: "He loves me, even though I fail Him every day." We never go through a whole day perfectly and never stuff up. And I stuff up a LOT more than just once a day. How He loves us unconditionally, just continues to blow my mind.

    One of the main things I learnt in 2016 WAS to take each day at a time, and realize life isn't all going to be sunflowers and rainbows. Some days, we may do some amazing things and learn some incredible lessons, and other days we may be feeling tired and spend the day resting and being unproductive. And that's okay. Each day has a purpose of some sort - even if it seems ridiculously insignificant.

    I could ramble on for ages, but I must be going. Thanks for the post!

    ~Miss Meg

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    1. I know . . . it's a terrible phrase :O It may have simply originated in the subconscious, but still -- it's got to go.

      Aaack, yes! That's such an awesome quote. Do you know where it's from? I've seen it around . . . It reminds me, in a way, of that quote from one of YOUR poems: "Even if life breaks me, there is one thing I do know/God is always there to hold me, and He'll never let me go." <3 <3 <3

      "Some days, we may do some amazing things and learn some incredible lessons, and other days we may be feeling tired and spend the day resting and being unproductive. And that's okay." YES. I need to remember that so much better.

      You're most welcome! Thank you for the comment! :)

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  6. That is my day!!!! Either I'm super productive, or I do nothing!!!!!

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  7. I relate to this. So. Hard.

    It's a struggle, isn't it? We want so much to be PERFECT and yet, we fail to realize that such a goal is a) unattainable and b) not really what God wants of us. He wants our best efforts, yes; but--just as much--He wants our trust in His all-powerful mercy. And the second part of that equation is super, super easy to forget ;-) But we'll get through it, I promise!! *hugs*

    Thank you for this post <3

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    1. ". . . not really what God wants of us" -- we definitely need to realize that more. Need to strive towards actually knowing the Father's heart for relationship with us. Yes! "We will prevail!" :D

      Thank you, dear <3

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  8. OH MY GOSH OLIVIA. I have been thinking about this too so much. I've seriously been going through the SAME THING. The siren call of the computer, the procrastinating showers till 5:00 (in my case), the getting up too late. I have literally the same days that you describe. And then at the end I feel intensely dissatisfied and upset with myself. Why can't we just always be productive right? But yes. Nothing we do will change His love for us, and we should stop basing our self-worth this stuff. Oh my gosh. Thanks so much for writing this, dear. I needed to know I wasn't alone in the daily fight.:) <3

    We have a God who desires to spend ETERNITY with us...so let's try to desire it as much as He does and try to deserve it.:)

    Just, thanks so much again.<3

    ~Rilla Blythe

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    1. P.S. Please say a little prayer for me if you can tomorrow--I have a job interview.�� Hope I'm not coming across as pathetic or anything haha but I think we all believe in the power of prayer here:) Thanks!:)

      ~Rilla Blythe

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    2. Rilla, it really is difficult to catch the lies, isn't it?? I'm so glad I'm not alone in my "unproductive" day patterns xD No, no, thank YOU -- your comment was such a blessing, and you are certainly not alone!

      AMEN, SISTER :)

      Oh, wow, yes, I'm sorry I didn't see this before now! (We've been having internet issues.) How did the interview go? Or has it already happened? Praying! Nope, you certainly are not -- I'm honored that you would ask me to pray for you!! :D <3 <3

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    3. It went pretty well! Thanks so much for your prayers Olivia!:) (On a random note, I just want to say that for some reason you always make my day not only when you post something, but also when you reply to my comments--it's like even though I'm here behind a screen I can still see/sense Christ shining through you. I hope that makes sense.:)) You go girl!!<3

      Also, thanks for following me on Pinterest! I'm Ella.:D

      ~Rilla Blythe

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    4. Hurray! And of course! :) (Awwwwww, RILLA. That means so, SO much to me. THANK YOU SO MUCH! *tackle-hugs you* Seriously, thank you so much for saying that :))

      Oh, hark! That was you?! Well, I'll be. That's exciting! Sometimes I forget to check my followers/following pages to update them, so I'm glad I did that time! :D

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  9. Ohmygoodness, Olivia! YES!!!

    This post resonated with me on a number of levels. For one thing, the run-on sentences accurately capture my current stage of "I'm-dying-and-have-no-energy-or-brain-function." (Not of course that using run-ons means your brain isn't functioning! I just tend to use them a lot when my brain is fried. So. Ahem.) They also made the post have the vibe of a free-verse poem and I liked that. :) I can also relate to the whole "good day or TERRIBLE day" thing. Like it's either one or the other (productivity-wise). But... maybe we should just stop doing that??? Labeling a day "good" or "bad" based on how much we "accomplish"...

    Anyway. Thank you for this timely post, my friend. *hugs*

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    1. Kayla, the struggle is real, no? (Haha, no worries -- I tend to use them whether my brain is fried or not!) "But… maybe we should just stop doing that??? Labeling a day "good" or "bad" based on how much we "accomplish"…" << YES AMEN. I'm with you on that.

      You're welcome, girl! Thank you for your comment! *hugs back*

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