More of You and Less of Me
Guest Blogger: Shandyn Paul, The Anchored Mama
“If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone.” --Romans 12:18
“I should have more grace”- the words spilled out of my mouth even before I knew they were coming.
But He knew.
He always knows.
Difficult relationships can cause a mountain of emotion to well up inside. Oftentimes I feel as though my mountains might erupt into a volcano at any moment.
And sometimes they do.
I want to be at peace with everyone, after all, it’s what God wants from me.
I want to be Jesus to those who've caused me pain, but instead, I'm me.
Instead of grace, I give the cold shoulder.
When I feel wounded, I grab my own bow and arrow.
When I feel threatened, I build my walls higher.
When the sting of rejection pierces me again, I choose to walk away, also.
When I allow my pain to mount, I become more like me.
Instead of turning the other cheek, I want to take an eye for an eye.
But, it’s in those moments when the grace I so desperately want to extend to others but just can't seem to find is instead extended to me. It’s in those moments He ever so gently reminds me how to be a peacemaker.
As I stood there knowing I needed to have more grace, the words from a familiar song echoed in my mind.
“When I just can't see past myself
Oh Lord help me be
A little more like mercy' a little more like grace
A little more like kindness' goodness, love, and faith
A little more like patience's a little more like peace
A little more like Jesus, a little less like me”
Zach Williams- A Little Less Like Me
When others have wounded me, and I can’t see past my own hurt, Lord would you help me be more of you and less of me?
Instead of being bitter, would you help me to be better?
Can you take my broken pieces and make me whole again?
Jesus, in place of my hurt, would you heal my deepest wounds?
Would you turn my heart of stone into a heart of flesh?
Would you give me peace so I can be at peace with those around me?
Father, would you smooth out my rough edges and refine me into more of you and less of me?
I don’t want to let the sum of my past define who I am today. And thank God it doesn’t.
I don’t want what’s been done to me, determine how I’ll respond to others. And thank God it doesn’t.
I don’t always get it right. But thank God, He does.
Sometimes my bitterness threatens to take over and pull me under.
Sometimes my brokenness feels beyond repair.
Sometimes my heart feels too raw for healing.
But in those moments when I know I should extend grace, but I can’t seem to give it, He extends it to me.
When I know I should forgive, but it feels too hard, He extends it to me.
When I want to be better, but all I feel is bitter, He extends it all to me.
He pulls me in close and reminds me that in all of my weakness, in the places where I cannot yet extend grace and mercy and love, His grace is sufficient.
“But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” --2 Corinthians 12:9
In my rough places, He will make them smooth. In my hurt, He will bring healing.
Heavenly Father, Your grace is sufficient for me. In my weakness You are strong and I am forever grateful. Lord, each day would you wash me with Your grace. Would You extend me more of You? Father, I want to be who You call me to be. I want to be more of You and less of me. In Jesus’ name, amen.
Shandyn Paul is a wife, mother, daughter, friend, and writer living in small town, Ohio. She works as an educational aide for children with special needs. She enjoys being around people but also curling up with a good book. You can often find her at her children’s sporting events, cheering them on from the sidelines or in her office writing. She has hopes and dreams of one day writing a book, but until then, you can follow her on her blog www.theanchoredmama.wordpress.com, Facebook, and Instagram.