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While I wrote this more than a year ago, it still rings true.
Who would you be without the internet?
I realized something last night. Late last night. I find it so funny how God exposes our selfishness and then illuminates our need for Him further by things like this blog post by Crystal the MoneySavingMom, which is part of an unpacking of Andy Traub’s book. Here’s what happened…
One of my bestest (it’s a real word) friends is getting married and we were brainstorming about how we could get our arms in shape to totally rock our strapless dresses this summer (she really doesn’t need the work but who doesn’t feel better about themselves after sticking with a workout “program”?). What started as a Skype conversation turned into a full-scale personal training session for the both of us and we figured out what we could do…but it was so ugly on that Word document so I headed over to PicMonkey and started making a printable. Because, if you’ve read Bob Goff’s fabulous book, Love Does. So I started doing…playing with fonts, colors, organizing our random thoughts into something pretty…and then it happened…
I stopped thinking about my friend and started thinking about Pinterest.
I started thinking about how cool I could make this look and how if I pinned it to Pinterest then people might re-pin it and then I might get my name all over the internet (or at least my blog’s url) or at least something I did would be seen by more than my aunts (love you guys! ;) ) and a few good friends and my dad and one of his church buds…yada, yada, yada.
I still didn’t see the error of my motives…and that’s when I really buckled down and tried making this a thing of beauty.
And then I was finished. It was glorious and everything was aligned and the colors all matched and…
there was a giant mistake right in the middle of the page.
If you’ve ever used PicMonkey, you can merge the layers so you don’t keep shoving everything around when you’re moving other pieces. Well, somewhere the process – and in my haste to make something Pinterest-worthy – I forgot to delete a text box and I had merged the layers. It was stuck there. Not moving. Not going away. I must have clicked the undo button a billion times to see if I could get back to the merging I had done but guess what? You can’t unmerge layers. Too bad, so sad.
How much is that like our lives? You are who you are, “warts and all.” When you desperately want to present your absolute best you – for a job interview, for a first date, whatever – you don’t get to erase all the stuff that makes you who you are (those seemingly giant mistakes right in the middle of your page). You are just you but you do have the power to present the real you, but covered in God’s grace. As Crystal put it in her blog post, “Choose who you will be today.” Yes, I am selfish and sleep-deprived because I stayed up all night (okay, not all night) making a printable that I had dreams of being tossed around Pinterest like a beautifully fun beach ball at a seaside picnic, but, with God’s grace, I can look past that at the woman He made me to be. I can choose that and claim that for myself today. I can still be a loving and patient mama, giving my baby girl my full attention, a caring wife, tidying up the house so my husband can come home to more of an oasis than a pigsty, and an engaged coach, encouraging my athletes to work their hardest and do their best.
So to answer the question…who would I be without the internet? I certainly wouldn’t think about my blog stats. I wouldn’t “worry” (totally the wrong word but it’s the closest I could think of) about how many times something I made was getting re-pinned. I also wouldn’t waste time looking at other people’s lives and wondering why mine can’t be more like theirs (whether or not you’re a blogger, I guar-an-tee you’ll be convicted by this piece by Emily about blogging porn). I also would have been in bed a lot earlier last night.
Without the internet though, I also wouldn’t have the awesome accountability I had through Jan/Feb/Mar with my online Bible study with a private FB group. It was the first time in YEARS (I’m sad to say) that I read the Bible. Every. Single. Day.
I also wouldn’t get to share our precious baby girl with her grandparents, great-grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins, etc that are far away. That alone is a wonderful reason to have the internet.
And I wouldn’t have this awesomely terrible reminder of my selfish humanity…I am prideful and lost focus on the true reason I was making this. But guess what? I am not going to remake it to remove the typo – more time lost to something only done to make myself look better which is NOT important. I’m gonna leave it just as it is and move on with my life. So I can get to more doing (love does, remember?).