Do you ever look at your life and wonder, How did I get here? When did I become this insecure or envious or threatened or defeated — or whatever place you find yourself that you really don’t want to be?
Oh girl, those are “mine” fields! And, when I find myself stuck in one of them, it’s because I’ve become a faulty bow.
Let me explain! When we are bent on going and getting our own way, we “… are like a faulty bow” (Hosea 7:16, NIV). It’s a poetic way of saying we can easily become misguided and land where we don’t want to be.
Let’s tour the landscape of some minefields lots of us girls land in. And, of course, let’s figure out how to tiptoe out of them!
Minefield 1: Competitiveness
We all want to do our best, but when we are a faulty bow, we just want to do it better than her!! If she is good, I have to be better. If she is cute, I have to be cuter. It’s a minefield full of quick sand!
Compliment her for that quality in her that you’re actually jealous of.
Even if you never speak a word to her, think complimentary thoughts about her every time that jealous feeling starts to creep into your mind.
When you choose to compliment instead of compete, you will actually begin to like yourself. You’ll feel magnanimous for your kindness rather than mad at yourself for being petty. When you make that shift from competing to complimenting, your faulty bow transforms into a faithful bow and you find yourself where you want to be — comfortable with yourself and happy for others.
Minefield 2: Envy
Sometimes, when we are extra critical or resentful of someone, it’s because we are envious of her.
Here’s the deal: Envy of a friend is really a symptom of insecurity and discontent with yourself. And who wants to set up house on that minefield? No, thank you! If you find yourself constantly fighting feelings of jealousy, it’s a clue that you may be a faulty bow, misguided, and you’ve landed in a place you don’t want to be.
So how do you pick up that arrow, reset your bow, and get out of the minefield of envy?
By encouraging them!
When you offer pure, no-strings-attached encouragement to someone you’re envious of, you’ll feel so much better about yourself. You’ll develop a pure heart and a kind spirit — things that are actually worth envying!
Minefield 3: Feeling Threatened
If you interpret every suggestion as a slap in the face, every correction as a criticism, and every insight shared with you as an insult to your intelligence, chances are you’re standing on a minefield — and it’s exploding every minute!
If you’re overly sensitive or easily threatened, chances are you’re a faulty bow. You aimed for the landscape of significance, but you’ve landed in the rough terrain of “not-good-enough.”
Maybe you weren’t shown the respect you thought you deserved. Perhaps you feel like someone is out to get you. Or others never treat you the way you’d like to be treated.
So when you start to feel threatened, choose to be thankful instead.
Instead of taking everything personally, immediately take it to Jesus with a thankful heart: “Thank You, Lord, for teaching me and helping me grow.”
Competitiveness, envy, and feeling threatened are just a few of the minefields where faulty bows shoot their arrows, but God doesn’t create faulty bows.
If we choose to accept our identity as a loved, accepted, and complete woman of God, we will be who He made us to be and rest in the hands of the Master Archer.
We will conform to His will and His ways, and we won’t twist and turn, bend and posture, to get and go our own way—we will be a faithful bow.
When we are a faithful bow, we’ll be comfortable with the imperfect us – comfortable in the skin we’re in.
I want to rest in the hands of the Master Archer, don’t you? I want to rest in Him and in who He made me to be. My friend, you are a beautiful bow in His hand.
Let’s rest in Him rather than get twisted up and bent out of shape!
If you want to read more about this, check out Invisible and Invisible for Young Women: How You Feel Is Not Who You Are.
Do you identify with any of these minefields? Or are there other minefields you find yourself tiptoeing through? Share them in the comments below, and let’s encourage each other!