January's Lesson

I saw an interesting question on Emily Freeman’s blog as the month of January closed.  “What have you learned this month?”  One thing I noticed in January is that I saw progress in my self esteem.

I think we can all relate to the discouragement of getting back in shape after indulging in the holidays.  Every year I tell myself “Oh, I won’t eat that many Christmas cookies.  I’m just making them as gifts.”   Yeah, gifts I like to give and get…and sample.  It’s such a weakness.  Then comes January and my clothes don’t fit right.  Amazing what five extra pounds can do.  You reap what you sow. 

A few days ago, I had a luncheon date with my best friend.  Maureen is a pretty, petite blonde with a lot of class.  She’s a business woman, a caring wife and mom of grown children.  I learn so much from her about health, faith and life in general.  I am not intimidated, but challenged.  It’s a great friendship.  We usually lunch at the more swanky places so I take extra pains to spruce up a bit.  Last Friday, I changed outfits three times before I left for the restaurant and I still thought I looked fat, maybe not to some, but I kept thinking of how pretty and thin Maureen is!  That kind of thinking gets me in trouble!  I caught myself comparing but this time reality set in quickly as I did a little self talk.  I am pre-approved.  Okay, so I need to discipline my cravings (again.)  I know how to do this and I will! 

We women can really be hard on ourselves. I’m happy to see small steps of progress.  It feels wonderful not to get tripped up by the outer things remembering that Jesus loves me, and He paid the price for any of my mistakes, big or small, so that I don’t have to view myself as a mistake.

Do you know what’s funny?  I mentioned all this to Maureen and the expression on her face put a smile on mine.  She confessed a gain of five pounds too.  I didn’t even notice.  I was too busy being real with my buddy and she was being honest with me.  And when that happens, walls fall.  Love flows freely when the walls come down.  We opened up about a lot of deeper things that really needed to be discussed.  The enemy lost this round. 

Just in case you’re wondering, neither one of us ordered dessert.  What lesson have you learned in January?

I'm linking this post to Chatting at the Sky, Let's Share What We Have Learned in January. 
Holly Barrett


  1. You made me thinking! I supposed I have to go back with my devotional journal and see what I had learned in the month of January. But I believe that lots of things I learned like:I had to use much patience and God reminded me to be humble in everything I do. To forgive no matter what. Smile although I am hurting inside. To trust God no matter what I see and don't judge! Have to continue with those things:)

  2. "Love flows freely when the walls come down." What a great truth to remember. I think we can all relate to this story, and I hope that we have all taken a step closer to being comfortable and real, just as we are. Enjoyed your post very much as I link up through Testimony Tuesday.

  3. This is Ginger Harrington again. I don't think my contact info is on blogger. My website is www.GingerHarrington.com. Blessings.

  4. Hi there, I loved hearing this story; it is true, we women are so much harder on ourselves than on others. You asked about my surgery next Monday-I'm having a total hysterectomy. I can share more via email if you'd like. This came on suddenly and was a shock because my sister died from Ovarian cancer.
    God has been good and given me the grace each day!
    Hugs to you today.

  5. I've been guilty of comparison plenty of times. But then I get to a point where I'm totally happy in my own skin. One thing I learned a long time ago is that communication is key for any friendship or marriage. It can totally bring walls down.
    Love your heart friend.

  6. Last month, I was reminded of how temporary many things are. A neighbor back home passed away. And then some of our few friends here overseas are going to be stationed in different locations and will be leaving this year. Goodbyes can be really sad, but God will always send us people who will make us feel His presence.

  7. Hi Mary! January was a big month for learning. I learned that accidents happen, and you have to just move forward from there. I also have to learn patience with myself and my healing, so that's an on-going process.

    I loved your story about you and Maureen. Isn't it true that we are so upset with ourselves, we don't see clearly? I can really relate to that. I'm so glad you have a friend you can be honest with, and have a chance to dress up too. Once in a while, putting together a special outfit is fun!

  8. We all struggle, it's not a female battle alone. Men struggle in ways that come from the same origin; insecurity. We all want to be and look a certain way… I so often have to remind myself of what God looks at; my heart.

    That page about being Real is awesome! Gotta remember that one!

  9. Isn't it interesting, Mary, how quickly we can forget and find ourselves back in the same space that we were just a few months ago? I needed to hear this today, because I have been a bit discouraged about my weight gain. I think instead of being discouraged, I just need to get busy and do something about it...make wiser choices.

  10. I so agree that women can be hard on themselves. Thanks Mary for sharing. I love your beautiful heart. Have an amazing day out there. Hugs.

  11. I agree that we women are very hard on ourselves. Thank you so much for sharing this post.


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Book Review: Too Many Voices

Prayer and the Middle Child

My Choice for Women's Day