If you could change one thing about your life, what would it be? Be honest, it's only you that will know. I love to drive around beautiful neighborhoods, with enormous houses just to look at the beauty of the architecture. Every time we drive by and dream about what it must be like to live in that house, I often wonder what are the people like that live there. What is their life like? Are they happy? Do they see the beauty of their home like we see the beauty of the outside? I actually had a couple of opportunities to visit some of the homes, that in my mind were untouchable. They were beautiful and grand. When I went into one, it was full of life, and beautiful. Wide open spaces sunlight flooding in. I will never forget the pull I had from the moment the door was opened to head straight for the baby grand piano, that was nestled in front of a glass wall that was opened to the outside. Wow, picturesque it was so stunning. Then as you walked to the back yard, you were greeted by an infinity pool that had a glass wall out to the intercoastal. It was simply amazing. The inside was far grander than the outside and the beauty on the inside radiated.
The next one I visited was so amazingly beautiful on the outside, it had a grand circle driveway, and the house was more house than I had ever seen in my life. It was enormous. As the beautiful wooden doors opened, the welcome was kind and a bit desperate. The house had amazing bones. It was grand, and reminded me of a 70's show. Nothing really had been updated in the house since it had been built. When it was built the importance was the vantage point from the outside. While there were some things that made sense in the house, a good cleaning and update would help tremendously. The stories that came from the home, were depressing and sad. There wasn't any life, in fact there was bitterness and rage in the house. I immediately understood that there were unresolved feelings of hurt and suffering that took place in this house that should be full of life. It was a totally different experience. I remember leaving the house and feeling such a pain and loneliness. It was an ache really, the house that looks so stunning from the outside, inside was so broken and in despair. The environment was dark, just like the owners heart.
As I think about those experiences, I continue to remember a very valuable lesson I've learned about the smoke and mirrors in my life. When I use that term I'm talking about embellishing the truth to make something look better than it really appears. I hear the term used a lot in business, particularly with sales. I have realized that after several major events in my life that my "perfect" life had been planned in my head far before I started living it out. Without understanding that I struggled with the fantasy in my head versus the reality of what my life looked like. For a long time, I was embarrassed to admit this, but I can't believe that I’m the only one that has suffered from this smoke and mirrors syndrome. In fact I would venture to say that most women, in some way suffer from the reality that their life doesn't resemble the fantasy that is longed for. I might even say that a lot of marital issues stem from this false reality that has been created.
Just take a moment and think about when you were a child. The stories as a little girl we watch. How we see the knight in shining armor rescue the damsel in distress. From that point, we are awaiting the arrival of the man (our knight) that will fight for us, take us from the reality of life and create a fairytale ending for us. The perfect man takes the imperfect woman to make her whole and she will never want for anything after that. Oh how perfect our life will be together. However, the perfection we seek is not a real measurement of our success. When the reality of our life doesn't match the picture in our head we feel like a failure. Life is no longer a happily ever after because it doesn't live up to the expectation created by the smoke and mirrors we've been fed. What do we do? At this point, you can either embrace your present life and learn to enjoy the imperfections of it or you struggles with a feeling of unhappiness because it doesn't meet your expectations. You begin to feel like, well maybe if I had taken another path in my career, or married someone different. We find many excuses as to why our lives are not what we dreamed from the beginning of our thought process. I want you to take a moment and STOP the madness and ask yourself this question, "If God is sovereign and is working on my behalf all the time, then maybe my life looks just like He designed it to look. In Proverbs 19:21 (NLT) we are reminded, "You can make many plans, but the Lord's purpose will prevail."
See the picture in your head isn't always, the foretelling of what your life will look like. In fact, most of the pictures are developed during the time of watching the way Disney portrays life. That perfect picture isn't always showing all the loss, mistakes, and challenges that you will endure so that you can become all that God has designed you to be. I believe my life, is by God's design. I have asked him for years, "Lord, let your will be done, not mine." Most of the time, we say things because we hear others say them, or it sounds like the Biblical thing to say, but when the reality of allowing His will over ours hits, we have a hard time digesting it. We get angry with Him or even feel like He doesn't love us. I'm sure He wonders what in the world we want. We say we want something and then when he begins to work it that way we complain. I never understood the cost of that statement until after I was married to my perfect man, that rescued me from my single reality. The next part of my picture perfect marriage was to have children. My husband blessed me with a double portion when we were married, he had twins that I feel in love with and couldn't wait to be their bonus mom. They were perfect too, until they were actual kids, imperfect and stubborn in every way, then my story began to look less like the perfect family than what I expected. When I was told I was unable to have children, my perfect world crashed and burned. It was no longer what I expected. What was happening to me, how could God do this to me. After all I'm His favorite! I'm angry, frustrated, sad, disappointed, rejected, felt abandoned, you name it, I felt it. My life, doesn't look like what I created so long ago in my head. Nothing like it, but does it mean it's wrong or unfulfilling? ABSOLUTELY NOT! NO! In fact, I've learned over the last 11 years, that my life is so much fuller now than it's ever been. God has blessed me in other ways, far better than I could have ever imagined. Oh my life is so far from perfect, we have challenges like everyone else, but what God has given me far outweighs any disappointments.
While I've struggled, and would be lying if I said I still don't struggle with not having a biological child, God has given me so many children to love. He has allowed me to be a Mom to my 3 beautiful, spunky, and imperfect (but perfect to me) children. I have the blessing of being a wife to the most amazing man. He has taught, loved, and pushed me to be all God has designed. A coach and mentor to so many amazing people. I have traveled the world and seen the amazing creation of God. I am blessed! As a designers original, my life is being perfectly made in His image. I may not always understand the plans, or how it will work. There are so many more things yet to come. I am coming to the realization that I'm exchanging my will for His. I've laid down the smoke and mirrors of what I thought my life should look like, and have embraced His life for me. There is a reason my life has the appearance it does, and while I may not fully understand it, I trust God. Today, and daily I turn over every expectation of "my" perfect life, and embrace "HIS" perfect life designed for me. If you find that you are struggling with smoke and mirrors, or desire more out of your life and need someone to help you along the way. Please contact us for a free consultation. We are here to serve you and walk with you. Remember, we're better together.