Motherhood: The Measuring Stick - Part 2

by - September 01, 2010

Yesterday after reading my post, my sweet and thoughtful friend Eileen questioned me on my use of Jesus as a measuring stick - her concern being not only I was setting impossible standards but was attempting to attain the same position as God, something that got the Archangel Lucifer booted from Heaven. I don't believe that godliness (a term often used in Christian circles) means deeming oneself to be like God or on the same level as God. I believe it has more to do with taking on the attributes of God as we spend more time in His presence and are changed by Him - for His glory, not ours.

As for impossible standards, yes they are, but that is exactly the point. We are to aim for the nature of Christ - humility. (Philippians 2) The love of God pushes us towards glad obedience. The reason I say Christ is the measuring stick is so that we do come to humility. If we compare ourselves to others, we might actually measure up okay here and there, but next to Jesus we are put in our place and have to either wither away in our failure (not the intent) or fall deeply into his arms of grace and begin to live in freedom - freedom from comparison, freedom from shame. The life of Christ brings humility not because it makes us feel bad or haunts us but because it shows us how much we are loved. When I talk about measuring myself to Christ, I mean to imply there is no measurement. He is infinitely great and and I am so tiny, so I am humbled that He in his greatness would love and pursue me.

And if He is not measuring me, then why am I measuring myself to others?

There is obviously a difference between humility and feeling like a failure. If Jesus who failed at nothing made himself humble, then I can't help but think there is great strength in humility as well. Humility leads us to sets aside entitlement, judgment, comparisons, and allows us to embrace the roles we have been called to. I love the passage in Job where God lays him out and puts him in his place asking where was Job when God created the earth. Reminding myself of God's position reminds me of the significance and singularity of His words of love over me.

The more secure we are in God's love for us, the less inclined we are to measure ourselves up against his other children. We delight in Him for His endless creativity in how he designed each of us as unique individuals. And as my friend Eileen says, we learn to support our friends rather than compete (like the silly tweens in a pool that my friend Andrea observed)

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  1. I think you're on pretty solid theological ground. In fact, I'd say that your comments are much less "I will become like God" than the strong "I give them as you have given me" statements in the seventeenth chapter of John's gospel. Especially, say, this one:

    "The glory that you have given me I have given to them, that they may be one even as we are one, I in them and you in me, that they may become perfectly one, so that the world may know that you sent me and loved them even as you loved me."

    I don't know about you, but I think I'd hear heresy alarms going off in my head if someone claimed to be receiving the glory that the Father had given to the Son.



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