A try-hard girl gives common-sense grace: Rebekah Lyons
Here’s a try-hard girl sharing some common-sense grace! I knew that Rebekah was a kindred spirit when I read her book You Are Free. Here’s what caught my attention: “I’ve run the hamster wheel of achievement and acceptance; a headstrong, Type-A control freak, looking for love.” Religion, responsibility, popularity, approval and achievement reigned in her life. She aimed to please, avoid shame, and would rinse and repeat.
Does any of that sound familiar try-hard girl? If so, plunge into this interview with Rebekah.
How did you move away from performing for your worth and toward receiving grace?
I started showing my flaws and being open in my inability to be enough. When we lead with an embellished version of ourselves, people think that’s the real us. But it’s not. When we get honest in our brokenness, Christ meets us in our weakness. And then it’s just so easy to give Him credit. Apart from Him, we’re nothing.
In my 20s, I was trying to put my best foot forward, even in hospitality. It was no fun. I was just a stress bucket. Our house had to look perfect. Everything had to be made from scratch. This was less about welcoming others, and more about striving to be enough.
In 2017, “home” became loud for me; it was at the forefront of my brain. In the first 15 years of marriage, I was all about home. But the last five years, I’ve been dealing with a ramped-up career. We think that we have to be perfect at work. We have to be perfect at home. If we can’t be perfect, we’ll just quit. But God sometimes calls us to vocation outside the walls of our home and to steward the people we’ve been given.
God is saying to us, “Just invite me to be the grace and to cover the gaps.” It doesn’t mean that we can’t make decisions about our family and home. We can always be nimble to shift what our work looks like.
What would you say to encourage the woman who isolates herself from feeling her hurt and pain by being busy, by looking for outside recognition, or by always trying harder?
The mess is going to surface regardless. It’s better to approach our grief in a proactive way. Hurt will surface. We were never meant to carry pain indefinitely. For most of us that live busy lives, we don’t take time for healing until we have to. It’s a blessing for younger women, if they’re willing to come deal with it at a younger age.
For the woman who wants to live free, but doesn’t know how, what’s one step you would recommend?
You can’t know freedom without knowing bondage. You have to name the bondage – chronic fear, chronic anxiety, chronic stress. It’s usually a fear. Just ask Jesus to give that fear a name.
A practical way is to journal your fears as soon as you wake up. You can have such insight in those early hours. Meditate on God’s Word. Make your journal pages an ongoing conversation with God.
Invite other people into becoming free with you. Everyone wants freedom, but it feels daunting to jump in on your own. We can speak life over other people pretty naturally because we have perspective. But we can’t see that in ourselves. An easy way to start is by reading “You are Free” with a friend and journal out your answers at the back of each chapter, then share your insights with each other.