The Good Girl Complex

For years, I hated the word sin.

I cringed at the sound of it, hated the way it looked, despised how often Christians used it and doubted what it meant – or what I thought it meant, anyway.

Like many of us, I truly believed I was a good person. I wasn’t a murderer. I didn’t steal. I believed in God. I wanted to leave the world a better place. I tried to do the right thing. I encouraged and loved others. The list goes on.

But I didn’t truly understand my need for Jesus or why he had to die on a cross for me, personally.

God first began to open my eyes, when in preaching, my Pastor explained the word sin in a way I’d never heard before. He shared that sin is another way of saying “missed the mark” or “falling short of expectations.” He explained that just as children disobey their parents or do things they know they shouldn’t, we do the same to God, ultimately disappointing him.

It hit me. I remembered “the disappointment face” from my mother growing up. I would have rather made her angry than have her disappointed in me! I’d feel guilty immediately and most times, find myself begging for forgiveness. More than when she dawned the angry face, I knew I’d messed up when she would look at me and say, “I’m dissapointed in you.” What she really meant was, I had let her down.


Our sin and the manner in which God deals with us is no different. He loves us as our Father! He wants to see us succeed in life, walk boldly in the path he’s set before us, be joyful and ultimately, know we are deeply loved. And whether we like it or not, protest or embrace it, he knows better! His ways are higher.


I had it all backwards. I had allowed my childhood view of God, as a domineering, scary head in the sky,  to cloud my understanding of sin and my need for repentance. Sin did not make me unworthy of knowing God’s. [He can’t help himself from loving us!]  It didn’t lessen me to some filthy disgrace beyond embracing. [By God’s grace alone we are accepted, right where we are.] But it does put me in right alignment with God and others!

To often, we compare ourselves to other people.  We think that if we study God’s word longer each morning than Sally, if we pray more eloquently and louder than Barb publicly and we help the homeless every other sunday, than we’re good people. We deceive ourselves into thinking our “works” outweigh our “sin” and so long as we’re doing better than those around us, we’re A-OK.

For all have sinned and fall short of the Glory of God. [Romans 3:23]

None of us is exempt and no sin is weightier than the other. Despite our varieties of sin, we’re all equal. Our sin is all equal. I’m no better than the gentlemen in the recovery house or the women selling herself for money. I’m equal to the business man who forgets he has a family and the teenager who steals cars for kicks.

You will have no other gods, only me.No carved gods of any size, shape, or form of anything whatever, whether of things that fly or walk or swim. Don’t bow down to them and don’t serve them.

No using the name of God, your God, in curses or silly banter; God won’t put up with the irreverent use of his name.

Work six days and do everything you need to do. But the seventh day is a Sabbath to God, your God. Don’t do any work—For in six days God made Heaven, Earth, and sea, and everything in them; he rested on the seventh day. Therefore God blessed the Sabbath day; he set it apart as a holy day.

Honor your father and mother

No murder.

No adultery.

No stealing.

No lies about your neighbor.

No lusting after your neighbor’s house—or wife or servant or maid or ox or donkey. Don’t set your heart on anything that is your neighbor’s. [Exodus 20 MSG | The Ten Commandments]

Despite how “good” of people we are, when we honestly look and measure ourselves against God’s loving and perfect standards, we see that not one of us is better than the other. Because If God see’s ALL sin as bad and will one day judge us according to our misses, then we ALL fall miserably short of his glory and ideal. Even our best is filthy rags.


And while this reality may seem hopeless, God loved us enough to make a way. He sent a perfect example for us to follow, Jesus;  a man who was fully human, so he could relate and understand the things we go through here on earth, and fully God, showing us how to walk holy and blameless each step of the way.

Then, as the ultimate sacrifice and demonstration of his love for us, he placed the judgement [ramification for misbehaving] of the worlds sin, in it’s entirety- past, present and future, including ours- on his only son Jesus. He hung on a cross in yours and my place, taking the hit for what we’ve done. He died in our place, before we even knew him! He was a stranger to us and still, he took the bullet.

He jumped in front of the bus for you and me!


You see, the law was not given to condemn us, but simply show us our need for God! ‘Cause when we see our sin for what it is and the weight of what it costs, Jesus’ face becomes more clear. We see our need for him like the light of day and the Crucifixion becomes personal.

Friends, it should bring us to our knees in thanksgiving for what God has done and repentance for the ways in which we’ve hurt him. That’s all confession [saying we’re sorry to God] and repentance [truly meaning it and being determined to turn from it] really is. It’s not a demeaning religious act that we should proudly walk away from. It’s not Gods opportunity to throw mud in our face and shame us for all we’ve done.

He said his burden is easy and his yoke is light. Repentance is the place which we should daily come, humbling ourselves before a loving father and ask forgiveness for what we’ve done. And as we kneel there before him, he bends down to embrace us, hugs us and says “It’s all going to be ok. I forgive you. Don’t give it another thought.”

He removes our guilt as far as the East is from the West.


Because you see friends, it’s not about what we can do or how good of a person we can prove of ourselves. It’s what’s already been done for us! We need simply to accept this gift.

In Him we are new creations and the old has gone. Our every sin has been forgiven.. and forgotten!

16-20 Because of this decision we don’t evaluate people by what they have or how they look. We looked at the Messiah that way once and got it all wrong, as you know. We certainly don’t look at him that way anymore. Now we look inside, and what we see is that anyone united with the Messiah gets a fresh start, is created new. The old life is gone; a new life burgeons! Look at it! All this comes from the God who settled the relationship between us and him, and then called us to settle our relationships with each other. God put the world square with himself through the Messiah, giving the world a fresh start by offering forgiveness of sins. God has given us the task of telling everyone what he is doing. We’re Christ’s representatives. God uses us to persuade men and women to drop their differences and enter into God’s work of making things right between them. We’re speaking for Christ himself now: Become friends with God; he’s already a friend with you. 2 Corinthians 5:17 MSG

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It’s time we rise up as a generation and nail the “good girl complex” to the cross!


The Prayer you’ve Never Prayed

If were honest with ourselves, our prayer lives are anything but relational and more akin to children throwing tantrums when they don’t get their way, or 3 wishes from our genie in a bottle.

We talk about our faith being a personal relationship with God, who’s intimacy and love overwhelms us and as a result, our lives change as an overflow of that love.  But in reality, our time with him consists mainly of one way conversations where we come to him like a demanding toddler, asking for things to make “our kingdoms come,”not his. We ask for this, we desire that, then slap Jesus’ name on at the end.

Honestly ask yourself [I will too!] how often you come to him, like Jesus did, simply to be with him and enjoy his company-not because of what we want or even because of what he deserves [out of duty] but because we so desperately long to just be in Gods presence and enjoy his company?

the papa prayer

The ugly reality is I didn’t even see it in myself; I’d been ignorantly blinded by my relational sin towards God. Then this book landed in my lap.

The last two weeks have looked like ugly tears, frantic tantrums and desperate cries for God to change me, like only he can, through the transformational power of the Holy Spirit. I am just learning, just scratching the surface, of what it actually looks like to pray to our papa father and it feels REAL- for the very first time.

The Papa Prayer has torn me apart, turned me on my heard and created in me an unveiled desire to see myself as I truly am  and present myself the way God wants me to, not how I think I should or how preacher Joe tells me I should pray.

I journeyed through a frank, deep and vulnerable conversation of  prayer culture, not only from a personal perspective, but also from a dissected view at the Western Christian society.

Like millions of Christians, Dr. larry Crabb has always considered his prayer life a weakness – “dull, intense only in crisis, occasionally meaningful and passionate but mostly lifelessly routine.” But for everyone who struggles to pray in a way that matters, who is bored with prayer and doesn’t know where else to turn, this groundbreaking book whispers of hope for change.

Something new and real and deep started happening in him, Crabb says, when he began practicing the four steps of what he calls the PAPA prayer – a revolutionary conversational approach to talking with and enjoying God. As this fellow seeker shares his journey and education in the mysteries of prayer, he guides us to see ourselves and God in a different light . . . which will alter the way we talk – and listen – to Him.” 

Don’t walk, RUN and grab a copy. Simply put, the best money you’ll invest….ever. It’s the prayer you’ve NEVER prayed.

Victory takes time

Loving others doesn’t come naturally to me.

Ask me to pump their tires, empower them to reach their dreams [heck, even help equipt them with what they need!],  see their strengths, and I’m all over it, like a wet rag to a spill. Perhaps it was my mom, always telling me to reach for the moon, because even if I miss, I’ll still land among the stars.


We have different gifts, according to the grace given us. If a man’s gift is prophesying, let him use it in proportion to his faith. If it is serving, let him serve; if it is teaching, let him teach; if it is encouraging, let him encourage; if it is contributing to the needs of others, let him give generously; if it is leadership, let him govern diligently; if it is showing mercy, let him do it cheerfully.  ~ Romans 12:5-8

But the other stuff, like – reaching out those hurting , embracing difficult people with a smile on my face and a gentle demeanour, taking onus in giving or acting when someone shares their struggles and needs, giving of my “me time” to someone else, who perhaps needs it more- the washing people’s feet stuff- doesn’t innately come to me. it’s a daily battle- a conscious decision to pray for my eyes to be open to opportunities to love others, for my heart to be humbled in servanthood and that God would create in me a new earnest way of being- of living and loving without thinking. Because truth is I’m selfish and proud by nature.

What good is it, my brothers, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can that faith save him? If a brother or sister is poorly clothed and lacking in daily food, and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, be warmed and filled,” without giving them the things needed for the body, what good is that? So also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead. ~ James 2:14-17

I stumble on a daily basis and while most days, I’m quick to ask for forgiveness, asking God to give me what I need to love others and do it with joy,  there’s other weeks where I let my selfish ways slip. And before I know it, I’m overwhelmed, anxious and grumpier than a bear woke from his slumber. Guilt sets in and instead of falling to my knees, I press on thinking the problem is others and life’s circumstances. I know full well it’s not and the problem’s me. But every once in a while, It “feels good” to let my flesh win.

But like any sin, whether its the aftermath of gorging on a pint of ice cream or holding a grudge against a friend or family member who’s hurt me, the “justified feelings of good” wear thin quickly. And the more we grow in our faith, the clearer we see Gods face and hear his voice, the faster the luster fades.

You have never been tempted to sin in any different way than other people. God is faithful. He will not allow you to be tempted more than you can take. But when you are tempted, He will make a way for you to keep from falling into sin. ~ 1 Corinthians 10:13

For me, that realization is beautiful. It’s a clear, measurable reality that proves how good, loving and PATIENT our father is. He promises to finish the work he’s started in us.

So rather than letting Satan have those moments- [those days and even weeks]- rather than feeling bad about ourselves or allowing thoughts like, “and you call yourself a Christian?! God could never use a person who’s like that! You’re a hypocrite.”  I pray we would instead see God’s grace and favour. That we would hold on to his promises and know with all certainly we are loved and made clean.

We are made right with God by placing our faith in Jesus Christ. And this is true for everyone who believes, no matter who we are. For everyone has sinned; we all fall short of God’s glorious standard. Yet God, with undeserved kindness, declares that we are righteous. He did this through Christ Jesus when he freed us from the penalty for our sins.  For God presented Jesus as the sacrifice for sin. People are made right with God when they believe that Jesus sacrificed his life, shedding his blood. ~ Romans 3: 22-25

Because Truth be told, we’ve all come a LONG way and everyone struggles in one way or another. All sin is equal. We may not be where we need to be, but thank the good Lord we’re not were we used to be! Like climbing a mountain, some things, especially the ones worth conquering, take time!

Then I acknowledged my sin to you and did not cover up my iniquity. I said, ‘I will confess my transgressions to the LORD’ ” and you forgave the guilt of my sin Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. There is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. ~ Psalm 32:5, James 5:16, 1 John 1:9, Romans 8:1