I’m Done Pretending I Have It All Together

I had some friends over a couple of weeks ago and, much to my embarrassment, I noticed halfway through our lunch that I had not served them anything to drink. I had a drink in front of me and my oldest daughter had one in front of her (I’d poured both earlier in the day), but I simply forgot to serve drinks to our guests.

I often pretend to have it all together because my pride causes me to feel embarrassment over being imperfect in my roles. I’m done pretending. Here’s why.

I felt terribly embarrassed. It wasn’t until hours later that I thought about the incident and realized that I shouldn’t have felt that embarrassed. I did, though, and it’s the same embarrassment I feel when my toddler misbehaves in public and when someone drops by and my house isn’t particularly clean.

From an objective viewpoint, none of these situations warrant embarrassment. I forgot to pour a glass of water or lemonade for my guests. That’s pretty inconsequential. My toddler sometimes throws a fit when we’re out and about. That’s no big deal. My house isn’t always spick and span. Oh well. Then it hit me: I feel so embarrassed about these things because of my pride.

Letting go of my pride

It stung a little bit to realize I was being prideful. After all, when I think of a prideful person, I think of someone who is cocky or who walks around thinking she is better than everyone else. That’s not what I’m doing; I’m just trying to be a good mom, homemaker, and host. However, it’s still pride that leaves me feeling embarrassed when I’m imperfect in these roles.

As I’ve been thinking through all of this, I’ve remembered that I shouldn’t worry about what other people think of my efforts. I don’t owe an accounting to guests in my home, to strangers at the grocery store, or ultimately even to my husband. I only owe an accounting to God.

This isn’t a license to let my home become a disaster or let my children run wild. However, by identifying the source of my embarrassment as pride, I’ve been able to repent and stop pretending that I have it all together. I no longer have to invest precious time and effort into worrying about what you think of me. I’m able to invest this into pursuing the things to which God has called me.

I’m not called to be the hostess with the mostest, but I am called to practice hospitality and be loving towards my neighbors (1 Peter 4:9, Matthew 22:37-39). I’m not called to have perfectly behaved children (their human nature means they will misbehave no matter what I do), but I am called to diligently teach my children right from wrong (Proverbs 22:6). I’m not called to have a spotless house, but I am called to be faithful in whatever tasks are before me (Colossians 3:23, Luke 16:10), including housecleaning.

What about you? Next time you feel embarrassed because your clothes aren’t as nice as another woman’s or because your cake didn’t turn out like a Pinterest pin, stop and ask yourself if your embarrassment is due to pride. Are you trying to please mankind instead of God? If so, then join me in acknowledging this pride and shifting your focus to the One whose opinion really matters. Doing so will remove a big burden from your shoulders (Matthew 11:28-30)!

In what areas are you struggling with pride? How are you working to overcome it?

Shared at the following:

The Art of Homemaking, Tuesday Talk, Faith Filled Wednesday, Shine Blog Hop, Grace and Truth, and Titus 2 Tuesday.

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Comments

  1. Betty Palma says:

    Ooooh THIS one hit a nerve!!! I knew EXACTLY what you were talking about when I read it. This seems to be the story of so much of my life. I’m gonna have to mule this over & talk to God about this, then I’ll get back to you. I want (need) to be FREE. After all, I AM REDEEMED… I should be free.

    • Betty Palma says:

      Hmmm, my “mule” was a typo… or was it?😊

    • Hi Betty,
      Yes, we should be free! It’s not easy, but I’ve been pondering this in the weeks since I wrote this post and I am finding freedom. Just last weekend we had a professional over to help us with pest control and it felt so good not to worry about how clean my house was (or wasn’t). I didn’t have to worry about it because my security was in God, not in how my house looked.

  2. It is really better to please God than mankind! Life only gets better that way ♥

    summerdaisycottage.blogspot.com

  3. This is so well put and so convicting. I struggle with feeling guilty over mistakes and embarrassments more than over real sins. But you make a good point that It’s really sin that makes me hold onto my pride and feel embarrassed in the first place. I have so many imperfect moments and it’s a good reminder that we can give it to God instead of holding onto our pride.

  4. Thank you for this, Shannon. You are not alone, and I know that because I’m right there with you! Pride is a huge “issue” for me…I so want people to think well of me and to, admittedly, be impressed by me. I have to come back time and time again to the utterly convicting Galatians 1:10 ~ “Am I now trying to win the approval of men, or of God? Or am I trying to please men? If I were still trying to please men, I would not be a servant of Christ.” So there’s something for me to work on for, oh, EVER. Thank you for reinforcing the need for me to deal with this!

    • I’m sure I’ll be working on it forever, too, Elizabeth. It looks like this is an area where we really need to support and challenge one another.

  5. UGH! I’m so there with you in the whole “I’ve got this” image. It’s hard for me to ask for help or to admit that something is just too hard for me to do. And I forget to call it what it is: PRIDE!

  6. Shannon you have a way of striking the cord of the deepest fibre!
    I really appreciate this post.
    I am encouraged by this. Our hearts should yearn only to please Him..but gal some days it is a struggle but when we surrender He helps us through.
    Hearty blessings to you friend

  7. Pride is so insidious, isn’t it? it rears its head in almost everything. We have to be so careful to “not think more highly of ourselves than we ought.” I’m thinking about all you said right now when I think about my house. thanks!

  8. Honesty is really good for us all. Ourselves because we stop trying to hide what we are and others because they see a true representation of what we are and can then relax as themselves. Great post.

  9. I’ve never really thought about embarrassment and pride in exactly that way before! I’ll have to think about this some more. It certainly does take some of the pressure off.
    #SHINEbloghop

  10. Shannon, pride and the fear of man (what will others think?) just crop up like weeds when we don’t see them for what they are and uproot them. Thanks for a beautiful reminder to do just that. My post for tomorrow covers some of the same thoughts so all this has been fresh on my mind, too. Visiting from Cornerstone Confessions today.

    • Hi Donna,
      I’ve been spending a lot of time weeding flower beds recently, so I know that is a good analogy. The weeds grow quickly and are hard to get rid of. The same is true of pride.

  11. Isn’t it amazing how we can replace the lies we believe with God’s truth?! We’ve all been there friend. Keep being real!

  12. Great challenge here! I never think about embarrassment as being pride but you’re right. Pride is the source of beating myself over how others perceive me. Great thought provoking post!!

  13. This is a great post and I’m glad you linked up at the #SHINEbloghop or my wife and I might not have found it. We’re both guilty of this sometimes but it is definitely my wife who worries most, especially when welcoming guests. She really goes out of her way to make everyone comfortable but inevitably, always finds that she could’ve done more or something a little better. It’s so important to focus on what’s right and good and drop the worries of perfection. God is the only perfection and while it’s important to try our best, it’s equally important to then let go of worrying unnecessarily and engage happily with others instead, knowing we’re all imperfect in our own ways but have so much to offer and learn from one another when we know we’re good enough to just be.

    • Hi Reuven,
      Indeed, God is the only perfection in our lives. We’d probably be able to accomplish a lot more if we’d remember this and, like you said, let go of unnecessary worry.

  14. Your story very much resonates with me, and with many other women, I’m sure. You’ve expressed feelings we all face, but you’ve also identified the root of the problem as well as the solution for us. I’m so glad you shared it with us at Grace & Truth! I’m honored to feature your post at A Divine Encounter on Friday.

  15. As a “woman of a certain age (over 50)” I have to say that I care so much less these days about impressing others, or earning approval/acceptance. I struggled with all of that in my younger years, and I also had other issues that needed to be dealt with in that area. I think that as we age, we care less. I see why people in their 80s and 90s are cranky!

    One thing that I have discovered though–which was a revelation to me–is that all of those other Pinterest-worthy people who have it all together? They don’t. Not any more than the rest of us. In fact, some of those folks who are always perfectly coiffed and have an immaculate house are struggling more than they let anyone know.

    We are all imperfect women trying to impress other imperfect women so that they will approve of and accept us into their imperfect lives. Thanks for sharing your heart. You did a great job of talking about pride, because you focused on yourself and then challenged the rest of us.

    • Hi Mary,
      Great insight into the impact that age (or perhaps maturity) can have on this. You are correct about none of us truly having it all together. Perhaps by being “real” ourselves we can help others feel comfortable doing the same.

  16. Such a great way to look at this! It’s a constant balance. The last few years I’ve really tried to think things need to just be “clean enough” before having guests over. I hate the feeling of being overly stressed before company comes over.

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