I don’t think that any of us would set out to be a bad woman. Of course we want to be good. We want to be attractive smart and to make a contribution to the world in which we live. But how are we going to know if we’ve actually achieving goodness?
As a mother, I am constantly barraged by self-doubt. Even today I received a phone call from my youngest child’s teacher at school. It seems that my little “charmer”, though making good grades in school, has a cavalier attitude about doing his homework and assignments on time.
Honestly, my eyes literally teared up. I feel like a failure and believe that his issues are all my fault. I must be a bad mother.
I recently viewed and all men’s eMagazine and discovered that they (the men) have a checklist to evaluate goodness in a woman.( The old joke that says the perfect woman is a deaf- mute-Pamela Anderson look-alike is not on the list.)
She must be loyal.
She is to be supportive and never say anything negative about her man in public.
Patience is a must. This writer said that nagging is “like the black mold that grows in bathrooms”. It, supposedly, shortens a man’s lifespan more than smoking.
She has common sense but is preferably not smarter than the man.
Finally, she is calm and encouraging at all times.
Well, that settles it. I must not be a good woman.
So, with my chin still quivering on the verge of tears, I think I have two choices.
- I can come up with my own standard of goodness and evaluate myself by it.
- Or I can admit that I screw-up daily and my worst critic is me.
The first option produces insecurity and jealousy in me. My constant obsession with myself makes me difficult to live with. And even on a good day, I know that my own evaluation is not enough.
Admitting to being a screw-up may not be very appealing to you, but it can be freeing in the way that I look at my life.
This is where I believe being a recovering addict has helped me. Lost are all my pretensions of being good and glowing with self-control.
- I am truly powerless over my selfishness and the desire to self- medicate.
- So much of life on this planet is out of control and I , certainly, need help.
- AA calls it the “Higher Power” that we need to surrender to in order to beat the addictions that destroy us.
- The Bible reveals a Promised Redeemer who would someday come into this bad and broken world to make all things good again….He came….He alone was truly good….He took the punishment for all the bad and gives us His goodness.
Today, of all days, I need to remind myself of the goodness that has been bestowed upon me. I don’t deserve it but have received it. Jesus didn’t deserve punishment but chose to receive it for me.
So, I’m still not good but he has promised to make me better. The beautiful motivation that grips my heart is this. Jesus died in the dark for his enemies. May I strive to “die little deaths” in the dark for people who don’t appreciate it or could never repay me. Self-discipline does not achieve this. It only comes from gazing at the beauty of His goodness.
I needed that!