I'm absolutely convinced that nothing - nothing living or dead, angelic or demonic, today or tomorrow, high or low, thinkable or unthinkable - absolutely nothing can get between us and God's love because of the way that Jesus our Master has embraced us. Romans 8: 38-39 (The Message)
How many times have we needed this reminder? My post yesterday highlighted my struggles over the past year. With social media today we seem to compare our lives to our closest "friends", yet we know those posts are our highlight reels in life. Who wants to see the messy life? I knew the purpose of this blog would not always be to see the pretty, but the real. I knew God had called me to use my life experiences. I have been terrified, but for all the wrong reasons. While watching a Netflix special with Brene` Brown last week I realized in order to be vulnerable we must have courage. I lacked courage and my trust in God, embarrassing, but honest.
You see we allow people to see what we want them to see. I had a friend recently tell me how she saw me as being a very strong woman as I was sharing with her some struggles I was walking through. I was explaining where I was in life and she very gracefully said you will be fine, you are one of the strongest women I know. It was such an amazing compliment, but I got into my car and thought, she has no idea. She doesn't see my weaknesses and fears. We tend to go through life imagining how wonderful someone else's life is or how amazing he/she handles life. In reality, we only see what others want us to see.
No one sees "me" the days I could barely pull myself out of bed or barely go through the motions of the day when life fell apart. The nights I fell to my face begging God to explain why these things were happening to me again and again, countless tears falling to the floor. Or the endless conversations with one of my prayer warriors as they walked me through yet another crisis or rejection, trying to reassure me why I had yet another hurdle to jump through, what God wanted me to learn from it. On the outside, everyone sees this strong woman, but let me tell you I am not strong, my God is strong! I can not breathe literally and figuratively without His strength in me.
My fears of posting my struggles became my focus these past few weeks. Do you know why? It wasn't what God would think. He already knows my weaknesses, fears, and shortcomings. He sees my everyday struggles and still loves me more than I can even imagine.
People, people's thoughts were my fears. When we slip people are right there to tell us or question our faith. Question our Christianity. Of course, not everyone, not even most people, but the enemy uses one or two and we begin to think there are thousands against us. We allow the enemy to attack our confidence and trust in God. We allow the enemy's voice to cripple us.
That's when we need to begin to pray purposefully. Pray for God to hear our cries and know we trust Him even when we aren't showing it or at the time fully believing. We sometimes need to say it out loud to believe it. Especially when we feel attacked in every corner, even though our heart tells us it was lies, not the truth. Nevertheless, the struggles are VERY real.
Nothing can get between God's love for us, but us! We walk away, we turn our backs, we doubt. We must remember all of us are human. We cannot put our worth in the words or actions of other humans. God NEVER leaves our side. He sits patiently waiting for us to return to him. Doesn't it feel great to fall back into His arms?
Of course, we will fail again. We are human and sinners, remember those impurities I talked about. The wonderful thing is our God loves us with ALL our impurities. He will teach us and help us remove them if we will let Him.
The important lesson we must learn is we can't live for man's approval alone. Although most people are good; we can't live for their approval It is important to focus on God when we least feel Him in our lives (talking to myself here) and know when life gets tough we can't listen to the enemy and instead of walking away from God we run to Him because He is ALWAYS here with us waiting to embrace us with His unconditional love.