I couldn’t sleep so I decided to write…
There is a lot that I’ve been thinking about, and honestly sometimes I’m not too sure what it is that I want. I am, in fact, doubting that ministry is where I want to be and I know why that is, it’s because I keep getting sucked into a world that I think I want to be apart of, when in actual fact it’s just lies. That’s what my life seems to be bombarded with lately. Lies. Lies about who I am, lies about who God is, lies about what I want and about what he wants, lies about relationships and friendships and family, lies about standards and expectations. Honestly, I can feel quite attacked and discouraged a lot of the time. The most exhausting thing about all of this is that 90% of the lies I’m being told, well, they’re coming from my own heart and mouth. Yes, the world is definitely playing a part, and not doubt the deceiver is as well. But, I have begun to realize that these lies are what I’m telling myself. I’m the one saying that maybe ministry isn’t where I’m supposed to be, based off of other lies I’m telling myself about what I expect from myself and the life I want to live. Sometimes I feel like just giving up. Climbing into bed, putting my head under the cover, and never coming back up. However, even in all that, there is too much burning inside me to just stop functioning as a person. Yes, I might be exhausted from all the lies I’m being fed by myself and the world around me, but that doesn’t mean I don’t love my friends and family, and what I’m studying and my decision to go into full time ministry. It just means that unfortunately my heart isn’t feeling like it’s all in lately. The funniest thing is that I, once again, know fully and well why it is that I am feeling this way and why it is that I’m feeding so many lies to myself and accepting so many lies from the world around me. It’s because I’m neglecting my relationship with God. And even as I type this I can feel the emptiness in that word relationship. I thought that by typing this up, it would be a great way to force myself to think about what it is that I need to do and how to stop doing what I shouldn’t. But, I still feel quite empty and discouraged and honestly just tired and mostly like a failure and a disappointment. But this is the catch. It’s not about what I feel right? It’s sometimes actually pretty crucial for us to ignore how we feel. The heart is deceitful and hopelessly depraved. Does that sound like good feeling to follow and go by? No. Why? Because that is basing things on what I feel, rather than on what I know.
The reality is that right now, I feel alone and disconnected and honestly like I couldn’t care less about anything or anyone. But I’m broken and I’m sinful… I don’t expect to feel all happy and full and as if everything is all together all the time. That wouldn’t make me human.
One of the biggest lies I’ve been telling myself lately is that being in a relationship with God, as his Child, means that even when things are hard and difficult, that I will feel him. Right now. If that were the truth. If my relationship with God was based on how I felt. I wouldn’t be his child… we would be complete strangers. Heck, based on the way I started this post you would think we were strangers. No prayer. No Scripture. Just me opening up a bit about how I’m feeling.
What do I do? How about as I continue this I pray…
I’m aware, as I said before, that it’s not about what I feel. It’s not even about me.
Let’s reexamine the lies. They’re all based on things to do with me and my views and my feelings and my standards. But if it’s not based on my feelings and not based on me at all really. Then what?
Who he says I am. What he wants for me, his standards, his view of me and of my life. Even further than that. Who he is. What he wants.
The conclusion I’m coming to is that it’s okay that sometimes I feel like I’m in the wrong place, and that I’m not where I want to be or that I want more. It’s okay that I feel like a failure or that I’m not succeeding. Why? How is it that that is okay? Well, because that’s just how I feel. It’s not what I know and it’s definitely not the truth.
The truth is that God, my Father, tells me that I am forgiven, and that I am loved, and definitely not alone! And with him I’m always winning in life (even when it looks like and feels like I’m not) – not because of me, or where I am, or what I’m doing – but because of what he has already done. My feelings can’t change the truth, that’s thinking far too much of myself and the power I have (which is zero by the way).
These lies are just lies, and yes, unfortunately sometimes I give in and begin to throw a pity party for myself, or go down the wrong path, and cry to God telling him how much of a failure I am. But you know what he does? He holds me tighter. He keeps loving me. He moves his Spirit in me and although I can’t always feel it, he uses my mind and my knowledge to remind me that he is still there and his truth about who he is will never change. Which means the truth about who I am will never change. He reminds me that he is holding onto me, and he’s never gonna let go.
So yes, as much as I wish I could say that even though I love what I am studying and I love my friends and family – sometimes, I just don’t feel it. But PRAISE the Lord that I am far too weak and powerless for my feelings to overpower his truth and his Spirit.
I pray that if you’re feeling the way that I am now, that you remember not who you are, but who God is. That he is the powerful, Almighty God, and that he is in control, and that his Truth is what will stand.