Being honest here. Being embarrassingly, shamefully honest: I expect a lot out of a new article of clothing.
There is a small part of my mind that thinks (and I wish I was not telling the truth here!) that maybe with the right jeans, or dress, or shoes, maybe everything will finally be okay. Maybe with that new pencil skirt, I’ll find professional fulfillment. Maybe with the right cut of jeans, he’ll ask me out. Maybe the perfect heels will actually satisfy.
And I know I’ve discussed this a little before, but just because I wrote about it doesn’t mean I solved it.
Here’s what I know: the lies we believe manifest themselves differently in different stages of life. I may feel more secure in my appearance, but there were other insecurities that were able to take a front seat in its place as soon as that began to vacate.
My good friend Bruce was right on when he sang that we all have a hungry heart.
We all have that thing. Yours may not be clothes. Yours may be attention, or food, or relationships, or travel. We all have something in our lives that we are trying to make satisfy that aching place.
Folding my laundry this week, I looked at the tangle of warm jeans and had to shake my head. This was just fabric. It is incapable of doing anything but covering my body. It provides nothing but warmth.
Nothing on this earth is meant to satisfy my insecurities or desires. Nothing is going to bring the level of satisfaction I ache for. Nothing is going to assure me that I’m beautiful or worthy of love.
Certainly a pair of jeans isn’t going to do any of that.
One of my favorite quotes from C.S. Lewis is
If I find in myself desires which nothing in this world can satisfy, the only logical explanation is that I was made for another world.
We ache for so much that will never be experienced this side of heaven. We battle brokenness daily. Seasons of darkness can weigh so heavily. We were not made for here. We were not made for this insecurity and toil and pain.
We were made to be satisfied and secure. To be completely fulfilled. To be happy.
For everything we will not have here, we do have love. We are so completely and incredibly loved. And it is because of that love that we can experience fulfillment, security, and happiness.
But only from the source—Jesus Christ.
I have gone for too long feeling like food didn’t taste as good as it could, relationships were not as fulfilling as they should, conversations were not as satisfying as I wanted. Everything was falling short.
And everything should be falling short.
It is only when I am seeking my fulfillment in Christ that life is put in its proper place. I am able to give to my relationships and receive all that is there. I am able to be fully engaged in conversations. My work is satisfying in a proper way. My clothing takes a proper place as mere material.
When we are rooted where we were meant to be, life takes on the deep meaning it was meant to have. We serve out of confidence and security. We give out of a pure heart and generous spirit. We love out of humility and selflessness.