A friend and I wandered through the grocery store aisles in the hunt for fresh tomatoes and leafy greens. My friend, an amateur chef with the culinary talents of the Barefoot Contessa, offered to make dinner. It took me about two seconds to eagerly accept and accompany her to the store to buy the ingredients.
In the grocery, we exchanged small talk while reading can labels and examining the produce. Our conversation largely centered on serving sizes and nutritional values. But somewhere before the frozen food section, we stepped from light chatter into vulnerable dialogue. It started with a discussion about our mutual friend.
“She’s effortlessly juggling motherhood and work,” I shared about our friend. “Her kids are thriving and so successful.”
I grew quiet and continued, “But if I am going to be honest here, I feel really inadequate when I’m around her.”
Then, I spewed onto my friend all the negative chatter in my head. I disclosed all my perceived deficiencies, especially in comparison to our friend. I divulged my parental shortcomings, personal failing, and work missteps.
My kind friend listened to my endless, anguished musings. Finally, she responded, “I don’t think you appreciate what you bring to the table.”
I stopped pushing the cart and gazed in her direction.
She continued, “You have a warmth and friendliness that can only be described as a gift. Why aren’t you looking at what you bring into relationships?”
It was a record scratching, pivotal moment.
In a recent Bible study, we discussed who God says that we are to Him. The list ran long, but I remember a few key phrases. We are His beloved, daughters and sons of the King, chosen, and redeemed.
Ephesians 2:10 says “For we are His workmanship, having been created in Christ Jesus for good works that God prepared beforehand so we may do them.”
I so often buy the lie that I am less than who God says I am. I focus on my flaws and mistakes without fixating on what I bring to the table merely as a child of Christ.
I am not less than, faulty, flawed, or lacking.
I am who He says I am.
Because of that, I confidently bring everything to the table.