Well, we've reached the end of our study on the Wonder Woman/Superman Complex, and you know what? I'm starting to recognize and identify some of my actions based on our recent lessons. Just this morning, I refused my husband's offer to walk the dogs. The truth is that I really wanted him to because if he did, I could have my own personal prayer walk without feeling guilty about not taking the dogs along. But I could tell that he wasn't really in the mood to walk them which meant (in my mind) that the dogs wouldn't get as good a walk as they would if I took them myself. Before I reached the end of my street, I realized what I had done and smacked myself in the head.
The bad news is that I'm still battling the complex. The good news is that I'm finally beginning to recognize and identify the symptoms. Progress is being made. It's slow progress, but it's progress nonetheless. So, let's dive into our last question and see what other symptom(s) we may bring to light.
Wonder Woman/Superman Complex Test:
Question #9 -Do you accept additional responsibilities when you know your plate is already full?
In other words, do you struggle with that dirty little word "no"? Maybe because you don't want to let others down. Or perhaps you feel that if you don't do it, it won't get done. Or it's possible you may fear others thinking less of you if you don't fulfill their wishes. Or maybe it's a combination of all of the above with a few other reasons sprinkled in. Whatever the case, you take on more and more, causing yourself new levels of stress and exhaustion. Ever been there?
Sometimes I feel like I live there; however, I must admit that I've been getting better. I finally reached a point where I realized that I can't be everything to everyone. There's not enough of me to go around, and God has given me my own responsibilities and priorities.
Does that mean we should never do anything for others? Absolutely not. The Bible encourages us to help each other out. Helping people is one thing. Do something for others that they are not willing to do themselves is a different story entirely. There's an old saying that goes something like this:
If you need something done, don't ask those who aren't doing anything. Ask those who are doing everything, for then you can be assured that it will get done.
Sad, but true. The problem is that those people who are doing everything will eventually burn out and/or grow bitter with their load. Then what?
Just because someone asks us to do something does not mean that it's God's will for us to comply. Before agreeing to take on another task, let's spend some time with the Lord and get His opinion on the matter. He may want us to assist that person, or He may want us to focus on the tasks He's already assigned us. If we allow Him to direct us, we'll find it easier to say "no" without feeling guilty. After all, there's no reason for remorse if we're following the will of the Lord.
But let every man prove his own work, and then shall he have rejoicing in himself alone, and not in another.
For every man shall bear his own burden. - Galatians 6:4-5