Trying to write when I’m in a funk is impossible. I’ve started many posts, only to fizzle before I could finish. My funk needed to be replaced with fervor; my atrophy with ambition. I’m coming out of the fog and finally able to find my way back to writing. I pray this closes a chapter in my life and frees me to go forward with more knowledge and vigor as I enter a new one!
Each trial we endure draws us nearer to God and develops our character. We are each on paths to being perfected, to become more Christ like. Tough experiences change our hearts; we can allow them to harden our hearts or let the love of Jesus and His power soften them. I am often tempted to stay bitter, to wallow in the muck of self-pity when things don’t go my way. But I am of no use to God in that state. He has work for me to do, so I prayed hard for an expedited healing; for a softened heart! Here is how it went …
I spent a large part of my time this past summer in prayer and in study as I sought to let go of unforgiveness, bitterness and rejection that has tormented me over the past year. God was faithful, as always to lift the burdens. I felt them go, along with all the strife, struggle and sin. Up, up and away, as if carried by balloons…each labeled with the people, places and pains that put me in the state of madness. I took the time I needed to address each and every thing that was weighing me down. One by one, I released them to the only one powerful enough to overcome them. And then I walked away. It was a life changing experience.
There is healing in the process of unpacking your pain layer by layer. Covering your hurt with a smile is not enough. It will continue to rear its ugly head until and unless you hit it head on. I have done that and praise God, it was worth the hard work. Part of the process of forgiving and letting go of a painful event is a re- remembering of how things went down. Obviously the situation itself won’t change, but the feelings, opinions and suspected motives can. I can choose to view the situation from a new standpoint; one that is realistic and that takes not only mine, but also the other parties’ weaknesses into consideration. Recognizing their shortcomings as well as my own keeps me from not only internalizing it all and blaming only myself but also from putting the focus solely on them. It’s not bad to call a spade a spade, a sin a sin, and a raw deal a raw deal. Blaming is certainly not helpful, but a dose of realism is absolutely necessary. Acknowledging that others have heart issues that are the root of their problems, just like my heart issues are mine, takes the villainizing out of the equation. Stripping them down and seeing their hearts allows for grace and understanding; the same grace and understanding I get daily from Jesus. So WWJD? He would, as he has, forgive. He has forgiven way more by worse people. He has forgiven me, after all! And if you know me, you realize what a miracle that is! He wants me to learn from the stuff that seems unfair, from the people who seem to not love me and from the places I fear the most. He wants to see growth in me personally as my faith in Him increases.
So, here’s my advice…Let that crap go! Release the people who hurt you. Let the healing balm of the Gospel cover you! Rewrite those old tapes playing in your head. Re-remember the events in a way that causes gratitude for growth and gives grace to the sinner. Stuff happens. We all disappoint and fall short. Conflict happens. Sometimes it’s on us, sometimes it’s not. Regardless of the situation, our battle scars are the foundation from which we draw our testimonies. God uses everything! We are all messed up. Still, God is faithful. He is refining us until we need it no more. I can’t wait to be all shiny, new and free from the sin of this world; my own sins and those waged against me. It is not going to happen here; we know that! But it will in heaven! That’s why it is so important that we know Jesus. He is the author and perfector of our faith. Take the time to get to know Him, lean on His promises and, once again, know you are loved! Embrace your individuality! God made you! And He did not give you a Spirit of fear, but of a sound mind.
2 Timothy 1:7 For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.
This world is a total mess! But we have the promise that God will set things right. Knowing Jesus better is what we should be striving for, not conformity.
I love The Message translation of Romans 3:21-24
Romans 3:21-24The Message (MSG)
God Has Set Things Right
21-24 But in our time something new has been added. What Moses and the prophets witnessed to all those years has happened. The God-setting-things-right that we read about has become Jesus-setting-things-right for us. And not only for us, but for everyone who believes in him. For there is no difference between us and them in this. Since we’ve compiled this long and sorry record as sinners (both us and them) and proved that we are utterly incapable of living the glorious lives God wills for us, God did it for us. Out of sheer generosity he put us in right standing with himself. A pure gift. He got us out of the mess we’re in and restored us to where he always wanted us to be. And he did it by means of Jesus Christ.
Forgiving others and trusting in God’s forgiveness is the only way for others to see how “BE_YOU_TIFUL” we are!!
Stay tuned for some good stuff about expectations and how you really need to lower them! Until next time….xoxox….. Love and blessings from a messed up Christian ;)