God Is Not Working on Your Flaws

God Is Not Working on Your Flaws

When you looked in the mirror this morning, what did you see? A person with shortcomings and rough edges? Someone who has a loooong way to go before she measures up? A gal who struggles most days with feeling “not enough?”

You’re not alone, my friend. Most Christian women struggle with the “not enough” epidemic. Me too — for much of my life.

The Harm

So what’s wrong with focusing on your flaws? What’s the harm in seeing areas God needs to “fix” in our lives?

Think with me for a second: When you look at yourself and focus on a trait you don’t like or a place you need to grow, how does it make you feel? Empowered? Brave? Eager for the next part of your adventure?

Yeah, that’s a silly question, isn’t it? 🙂

Focusing on your shortcomings and flaws steals your power. And it redirects your focus, keeping your eyes turned inward on yourself. And inevitably you find yourself lacking. Before long, you may even start believing your “lack” is greater than God’s grace–that somehow you need to be better or do better before He can use you today. And that’s simply not true!

And here’s the amazing thing . . . those disempowering thoughts are never from God. Like literally NEVER from Him!

The Cure

When Jesus died on the cross, He took care of your sin and your shortcomings once and for all. The moment you accepted Jesus, God made you complete in Christ! (Colossians 2:10 NKJV) You became a brand new you with a new heart, a new identity, and new power, just like Jesus has. Now you are literally Christ in you! (Colossians 1:27) And when God looks at you, He doesn’t see failures and mess ups and not-quite-there-yets. He sees the brand new you with Christ in you.

So does that mean all your struggles suddenly disappear? Naw. Does that mean you’re instantly grown up and mature in Christ? Of course not.

What it does mean, though, is that, even on the ordinary days, you operate from a new place. You can be confident in who you are and Who dwells within you. You don’t have to look in the mirror anymore and focus on your flaws and not enoughs. If God doesn’t waste mental energy there, why should you?

made new in christ

Besides, you now have a peaceful assurance that nothing — NO thing– stands between you and God. When God looks at you, He never sees the flaws. He sees you as whole, with His Son in you. Today, you are more than enough in Christ.

I love how Ted Dekker puts it:

Our challenge isn’t becoming more than we are, because we are already risen and complete. Our challenge is to remember and abide in who we are, each day and each hour.

The Forgotten Way

It’s so easy to hear, yet so simple to forget in the moment-by-moment of everyday life.

The Joyful Question

So today, for a refreshing change let’s ditch “What’s wrong with me?” to ask, “What’s right with me?”

And if you and I happen to cross paths today, feel free to ask me that last question. You won’t even have to ask twice because I’ll be the one happily shouting, “Jesus, in all of His wonderfulness!”

P.S. To meditate a little more on how God can possibly see us like this in Christ instead of our flaws, read Romans 8:1-17 (MSG) and Colossians 2:8-15 (NLT). Both of these passages have made a huge difference in how I understand identity in Christ.

Posted by Janna Wright in grace changes everything, 0 comments
What I No Longer Apologize For

What I No Longer Apologize For

I sat down to read a magazine this morning. Not an earth-shattering confession, I know, but an unusual occurrence around here. (And just one more way I’m pursuing playfully alive today — my 2019 word of the year.)

As I flipped through the pages of Real Simple (May 2019), I made it as far as pg 10, “The Editor’s Note,” where Leslie confesses she is a recovering chronic apologizer. Which is why she loves this issue’s essay feature: “Women on what they no longer apologize for.”

Color me intrigued! I flip to page 126 and read all seven articles, right in a row. Short and sweet confessions of women no longer apologizing for things like loving cats or hitting the snooze button or being vulnerable.

And it gets me thinking . . . Leslie (and these 7 honest women) aren’t the only ones who have vowed to stop apologizing. I’ve been a chronic apologizer for much of my life too. A lot of us are. Maybe you’d have to raise your hand too.

And my mind stops with the thought…

Funny thing, since I started growing up in grace, there’s a lot I don’t apologize for anymore! Hmmmm.

I ponder this for a couple minutes till I crack a smile and scurry for paper because the non-apology list in my head demands to be written. Now!

And shared.

Without apology.

My No-Apology List

I, Janna Wright, no longer apologize for:

  • What I care about – like having deep conversations or talking about our God stories or focusing on grace all the time
  • Who I surround myself with – because relationships ebb and flow, and sometimes letting go of a friendship is the best thing
  • My emotions – letting myself feel all the feels, and being okay there
  • Ditching the “shoulds” – no more guilt trips needed, thanks so much
  • Not being perfect – throwing away the need to be everything to everyone all the time, and realizing it’s okay to mess up
  • What brings me joy – proudly loving crispy french fries, cold weather, sappy movies, and more
  • How I look – realizing God created me, just as He wanted me
  • My life path – being okay with not fitting the “norms” for family, kids, community, business plan, etc
  • Not adhering to mainstream Christianity – instead, focusing on our identity, what’s RIGHT with us in Christ, and how much joy and fun can be had on this grace adventure

And, oh, are there some fabulous stories behind each of these! I wish I had time to write them all here. Stories of angst turning to joy, fear morphing to courage, trying-to-please becoming He’s already pleased. A wild symphony of beliefs and behavior turned upside down through the power of grace.

What’s on YOUR list?

So, here’s what I’m wondering . . .

What areas in your life do you no longer apologize for?

Where can you fully embrace who you are, what you do, and how you think? Or what areas of your life are primed and ready to top your No-Apology List?

The only reason you and I even start a No-Apology List is because of God’s grace. Through His grace you and I have great freedom freedom to embrace who we are, freedom to like what we like, freedom to pursue what God has nestled in our hearts.

Because in Christ, who you are and what you love = no apology necessary.

P.S. If you’re tired of being a chronic apologizer too, you’ll enjoy this free video mini-series on shedding guilt to embrace more grace and joy in everyday life!

P.P.S. I’m so intrigued by this no-apology concept that I’m making it an Instagram project for a bit. Join me for behind-the-scenes stories and more juicy details from my No Apology List . . . and share yours too! Catch ya on IG — @jannamwright

Posted by Janna Wright in grace changes everything, 2 comments
The Right Question

The Right Question

The other night I had a fight with doubt.

If I were a meteorologist, I’d tell you it felt like a category 1 hurricane, with some mild flooding, and an impressive tsunami wave of emotion topping things off. The next morning the aftermath of the storm nipped at my heels, trying to pull me back down into the fears.

the struggle is real

I can say confidently . . . the struggle is real.

Maybe you are nodding with me. Yup, for reals, Janna.

But even as we say that out loud together, I have to add a thought.

The past month or two, God’s been pointing me toward something deeper — a question that keeps bubbling up. As I wrestled with shaking off the doubt that morning, this question rose to the surface of my thoughts:

Who does God want to be for you right now?

Huh. Who does He want to be for me in the middle of this doubt fest, I wondered.

So that post-storm morning I sat on my bed, journal in one hand and pen in the other and quietly asked Poppa, Who do You want to be for me today?

I sat there quietly and listened. And God? He gave me a very real, very long answer — much, much longer than I expected.

I thought maybe He’d say “Your helper” or “The One who drives your fears away.”

But He told me 24 things. Twenty-four concrete ways the God of the universe is here for Janna today, in the middle of messy, ordinary life. My favorite one? “The One who makes you laugh”

My heart settled. The waves ceased. And my eyes refocused on Him.

And even now, days later, I continue to be blown away by the new things God promises to be for me each day.

but God is more

Whatever your struggle today, whatever your storm . . . your Heavenly Poppa is more real than that storm.

In the middle of this struggle and the midst of today’s mess, when you’re buffeted by fear and doubt and seemingly impossible circumstances . . . who does God want to be right then? For you.

In all of His wisdom and grace, He stands ready to be exactly what you need in this precise moment — and more, if you will let Him.

Posted by Janna Wright in grace changes everything, 0 comments
How to Hide Till You No Longer Recognize Yourself

How to Hide Till You No Longer Recognize Yourself

A couple months ago I picked up a new book, just one of many I borrowed for a little spring break read-a-thon.

When I look back on that sunny afternoon, I can’t remember how I happened upon this book. Was it on my Goodreads to-read list? Was it recommended by someone? Was it a random librarian pick, propped on the end of a shelf with a tantalizing cover calling out to me?

I really have no idea.

All I know is, by page thirteen, I was bawling. Continue reading →

Posted by Janna Wright in grace changes everything, 0 comments