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In the beginning of Chapter Ten, Renee shares a story about how she blew up at her husband and called him a "mule" in front of her kids.  She was running late, frazzled, and mad that she hadn't finished her notes for her upcoming speaking conference.  Her mother heard her call him a "***" and said, "And you call yourself a Christian speaker?"

Renee shares that she felt horrible the rest of the night.  Guilt and shame overcame her and she didn't feel qualified to speak at the event.  When she told the event coordinator that she needed to step down the coordinator responded, *"Renee, if you don't need this message as much as the women attending, then you are not qualified to teach it.  But because you need it as much as we do, you are qualified.  You have been appointed and you are anointed to do this."

I couldn't help but feel for Renee.  Several weeks ago, I was exactly in her boat.  I was trying to make an outfit for the girls to wear during Spring.  It was still cold outside, but I knew if I didn't finish it that weekend, I might not be able to make it in time for them to wear.  I started on Friday night and was really having fun with my new pattern.  Saturday morning I woke up and worked on the outfit while the girls were playing with Raleigh.  The instructions called for me to try a new technique and I didn't really get it at first.  It took way too much time and I began to panic that I wouldn't finish the first outfit in time to make the second one.  Sunday afternoon I spent more time trying to finish the final part of the outfit which was attaching ruffles.  My ruffler was acting funny and kept breaking my needle.  The girls were playing in the office and Raleigh was working on the computer so I kept getting distracted.  I began to be mean to my machine (whom I refer to as Lady Lock).  Lady Lock and I were just not seeing eye-to-eye on these ruffles.  After three broken needles and no ruffles, the screaming began.  Raleigh told me to calm down.  I did not want to calm down.  Anxiety filled my chest because I JUST WANTED TO FINISH THESE RUFFLES before the weekend ended.  The girls kept trying to play with me and I am ashamed to say that I ignored them.  Exasperated, I shouted out that nobody wanted me to finish this outfit and I just wanted to be left alone.  My needle broke again.  I yelled a bleep word so fast that I didn't even know I said it until I saw Raleigh's stunned look on his face.  How could I call myself a Christian and yell stuff like that in front of my children?

My doubt and shame set in.  I felt like I had not only let my husband and children down, but I also let God down.  Why did I let my frustrations get the best of me?

Some days, it is hard to follow God consistently.  Renee says:

Whether we allow others' negative attitudes to affect us, break our promises to God, fight with our husband, don't spend enough time (or any time) praying and reading the Bible, or stop going to church, we feel that way.  Or when we yell at our kids, overeat, let the stress and strain of everyday life bump God to the bottom of our priority list, hold grudges, act prideful, or do anything we think or know a Christian shouldn't do - we doubt our ability to follow God consistently.  It's one of our biggest struggles.

She goes on to tell us that, "I want you to know we all blow it, but God offers grace to cover our guilt (pgs. 186-187)."

Have you ever blown it and felt like God was ready to give up on you?  Do you sometimes doubt God's grace and patience with you?

*Remember, God is not looking for a woman who is perfect.  He is looking for a woman who wants to walk with Jesus and find her confidence through her daily dependence on Him.

Till next time, let your light shine!

Blessings, christen

*pg. 201, A Confident Heart. Swope, Renee.

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