Take the Mary Challenge for Seven Days!

By Dannah Gresh

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By Janet Mylin, lead teacher for True Girl

“Do everything without complaining and arguing…”

To me, this bit of scripture from Philippians 2 has always felt a little like, “Don’t ever go over the speed limit.”  It’s kind of like, “Well, right. But there are times when you just have to, right?”

One Sunday morning as I was preparing to lead worship at church, I was feeling incredibly unworthy. Why? Because the same mouth I was using to lead others in praise to the Creator had spent a solid hour or so complaining the day before.

Do I have legit reasons to complain? I suppose so. I suppose you do, too.

But I realized my complaining had a very selfish motive: I wanted others to see me, hear me, and validate me. In essence, I’ve been spending a lot of time magnifying my problems so that I could feel secure.

That Sunday morning as I contemplated my feelings of unworthiness, the Lord reminded me of a woman I’ve never met. Jesus’ mom, to be specific. Along with the reminder came a challenge. I’m calling it The Mary Challenge. It’s a simple (but not easy) one-week challenge. (It's kind of perfect as we approach Christmas!)

I laid out all the details in an episode of my podcast The Normally Amazing Show. The episode is titled For Yonder Breaks…The Mary Challenge. You can find it on your favorite podcast listening platform or over at my website here. I even created a free inspirational download that goes along with The Mary Challenge. Find it here.

A Challenge Warning: The morning after I started the challenge, my cat peed on some of my favorite shoes, thus ruining them. A reason to complain? You bet. Is my cat still alive? By the grace of God, yes.

In gratitude (with two less pairs of shoes),


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