It doesn’t matter where you turn. Magazines, billboards and commercials boast the latest and greatest must-haves. There are always new styles, new cars, smart devices and electronic gadgets that can make you feel like if you don’t own them you don’t measure up. If you’re not careful, it’s easy to fall for the lie that you’re out of style or not “with it”.
Thankfully, today’s handy technology devices allow you to fast-forward through commercials (assuming you’re smarter than a fifth grader and not only know which remote to use but also how to use it). Even so, it’s hard to ignore the internet invasion. Social media is no longer just for laptops. It has crept into our iPhones and iPods and smothered our eye pads. To make matters worse, Facebook has single-handedly eliminated the need for Christmas letters, you know those nauseating annual status updates once offered certain elite families that were able to pull it all together. Today, it’s no longer necessary to wait until Christmas. Anyone can post bragging rights any day of the year. With all this swagger and puff everywhere, it’s so easy to get caught up in the I-don’t- measure-up mentality.
That’s why I love reading scriptures in different versions of the Bible. They sometimes reveal an entirely different perspective. Take Hebrews 11:1-2 for example. The “faith is the evidence of things unseen” scripture. In the NASB, it sheds light on a whole new meaning and tells us where our approval and confidence should come from.
“Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen. For by it the men of old gained approval.”
Did you see that? Men of old (and women too) gained approval from their faith. Not from how they measured up according to the latest tunic trends, not from their position or privilege, not from how many cattle or castles they owned. Esther and Sarah didn’t put stock in their tunics and toe rings. They knew a priceless principle. Approval comes from faith.
Here’s the deal: There will always be other women who are prettier than you, richer than you, more talented than you, smarter than you, more fertile than you. There will always be women who have children who are more brilliant or artistic than yours, children who obey their commands with first-time obedience, not after the “I’m-going-to-count-to-thirty” threats. There will always be women whose husbands have better jobs, better looks and bring home flowers and jewelry.
So save yourself countless heart aches. Stop measuring yourself by the fickle and fictional standards of the world. Set yourself free from the opinions of others. Your approval, confidence and hope comes from your faith! And faith has some amazing benefits. Faith never goes out of style. The longer you own faith, the better it gets. And the best thing about faith…no one can steal it or take it away. And that’s a fact.