Giving up on good.


I've really loved the series "Giving up on good," that Naptime Diaries has been doing and with an invitation from her and the blog tiny twig to respond, I figured I'd join in. It's a pretty awesome concept, I welcome you all to join, read all their posts and just process what could allow you more by giving up on good.

When being pregnant, there are two sides that I've been hearing. There's a "enjoy it while it lasts! Eat those cookies! Indulge!" attitude I'll get from some, and then on the opposite spectrum, there's a "Don't play the pregnancy card. Just because you're pregnant doesn't give you the right to do X, Y and Z."

When I hear both of these, my brain does a quick processing move. The former, at its extreme, are embracing a life of complete abandonment of responsibility.While the other, at its extreme take a no-mercy, judgmental approach. Both suffer extreme consequences in those positions, and the opposite side can clearly see the consequences of the other, but struggle to see their own.

Whats interesting is I find we all have a tendency to go to one camp or the other. My tendency is to go into the second.   I tend to wander far too easily into a life of self-imposed non-God lead 'convictions.' And because of the 'convictions' that I have decided I should have, I get acidic to every woman who takes any liberty to celebrate in her life. Even reading that statement that I just wrote, it makes me not want to be around myself. But, its something I've noticed in my heart too often.

Plainly put, there's too much license on one, and the other feels like prison for everyone.

I've been thinking a wee-bit about this, and have decided that would be a perfect area to' give up on good.'  I'm giving up on worrying that individuals will judge my actions-that I will fail to appease the pregnancy-card-destroyers, and I'm going to go ahead and give up some of the legalism I've labeled as "convictions."  I'm going to allow women to find freedom in their decisions-both in and outside of pregnancy-knowing they are just as capable to pursue God and hear from Him regarding their decisions as I am about the ones He's given me to make.

I've already began walking in this due to one awesome man (known as my husband! Ben, you're a stud.) And I've already found a lot of joy. I'm not saying that if God is convicting us of something, we should choose to take license anyways. Nor am I saying that those that have legitimate convictions that may seem 'unnecessary' to the outside world should be told to not follow those.  And I'm most certainly not saying that we shouldn't speak into each others life when we see our friends and family running into destructive habits. But I am saying that I need to reexamine how I define 'destructive' through a biblical lens, and check my heart to see if I'm really concerned or gaining some sort of satisfaction over the fact that I'm choosing to do 'something better' than the other person in the room.  I think a lot of joy is to be found in celebrating successes,  pregnancy, and life in general and allowing others to celebrate their lives (and join them in that!) as well.

Ben has especially taught me this. At first, the way he celebrated life seemed excessive to me. Really? A whole week to celebrate birthdays? Really? We're going to celebrate that?! And yet, I find myself able to praise God all the more. Ben actively seeks ways to see God moving and then to celebrate that. I tend to look for self-improvement projects that leave me, when unchecked, angry and bitter towards God and any one I've enlisted, because they supposedly are the ones who asked me to do all this. Ben's taught me a lot about rest, and a lot about celebrating the fact that God is capable to handle my problems, and the others. He's in the business of making things right.

In this season, He's given us reason to celebrate: a baby growing and being added in every possible way to our fam. He's also given us a season to rest before she comes. I could choose to see this as a time to get busy-especially to keep myself impenetrable from any speculated judgement-but I know that's not whats needed, nor asked of me. So I'm giving up on that. I'm also allowing there to be joy, and to take on that attitude towards all the areas of my life, even in struggle. I used to fear being vulnerable with others when Ben and I struggled in our marriage, or any other time-fearing people would become unimpressed with who we were. But, I'm learning to get over that. There's a season for struggle too, and I'm allowing there to be freedom in general from the fear of criticism, the fear of not being labeled as 'good.'

I hope that when you ladies spend time with me, you can know my goal is for you to find freedom from criticism and a whole lot of room to be.  I know God is faithful in doing a good work in you and I'm looking forward to celebrating in season or mourning in season alongside you. I'm excited to set my expectation that the same will be offered to me.


I like this series....What 'giving up on good' are you doing this week? What does that look like? How are you able to live for the better because of it?

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