From the outside looking in, it’s easy to misjudge, to overlook and to clearly miss what is actually happening from the inside looking out. We’re a society of surface level details. Many of us have hundreds of friends on Facebook, but when it comes down to selecting a person in your life that you know would give their shirt off their back for you, we often come up empty.
We come up empty in other areas as well. Especially when it comes to putting a value on our lives and our worth.
“The battle is always bigger than what it looks like on the surface.”
A few years ago I participated in my very first online book study with Proverbs 31 Ministries. I purchased my book, cracked it open and began devouring the words of Renee Swope’s A Confident Heart.
I had never read a book that I felt I could have written myself, had I allowed myself the freedom to put pen to page. I was comforted in the stories she shared, that made me realize that I was not alone in my daily struggles with confidence. And then she whacked me upside the head with a single question that stopped me in my tracks.
It was as if someone pressed pause, effectively stopping the footage of my existence in an awkward freeze frame moment where I desperately tried to wrap my hear around this wildly challenging question:
“What did your life look life before you met doubt?”
Has it been awhile? Can you even remember what life was like back then? It took me some time too, to really determine what life was like and to consider how drastically it has changed.
I’ve struggled with self-doubt, depression and anxiety for years. There’s some months that I feel on top of the world and others that I feel as though the weight of the world is resting on my chest, threatening to squeeze the life out of me.
There are some days that I stew in my own despair and find no sense of removing myself from the safety of my blankets and pillows.
“It’s okay to admit it…If the burden of striving feels heavy, let it go, friend. Let it all go. Fight the urge to decide that what you are feeling right now is WRONG. The goal is not to condemn yourself but to get clarity that will spur you on to positive action.”
In my time with battling my own roller coaster of emotions, I have learned a few lessons:
- It’s okay to experience these emotions
- But it’s not okay to allow yourself to be limited by them
- It’s okay to ask for help when you feel overwhelmed
- But it’s not okay to ignore the problem in hopes that it will go away
This chapter challenged me. Much like the words of Renee’s book in my very first book study, Lara tossed out one particular question that held me captive for some time.
“When will you finally feel like you are enough?”
It was as if history were repeating itself. This time stopped on a slightly different yet oh so familiar freeze frame.
I’m still working on my answer. I’m not sure that I’ll ever come up with a definitive response. Sure my head knows the correct answer to give, but my heart doesn’t quite align.
Lara does make a very valid point that I’d be a fool to overlook.
“The very thought of telling a wide-eyed toddler she is not enough is outrageous and cruel. Why should we feel different about how we treat ourselves?”
So on the days that I don’t feel worthy of the blessings God has given me, I need to come back to this truth. I am a child of God and just like I wouldn’t tell a toddler she’s not enough, He will never tell me that either.
Instead I’ll surrender the doubts and anxieties and fill their void with whispers of the promises He has for me through my identity in Him. (Find a list of these traits in the Study Journal.)
What negative chatter swims in your head day after day? Visit www.openbible.info/topics and type in the issue you are struggling with.
Write down the issue and the corresponding scripture you find in your Study Journal or a notebook and date it. Need help finding a match, ask the community. You might find that you too are not alone in your doubt and striving.
An important message for the journey…
I don’t care where you are, may it be sitting on your bed, standing at the kitchen counter, riding the train, locked in the bathroom away from the kids, wherever you are, take the next four minutes and watch this video. Don’t brush off the words. Let them sink deep into your bones and help you to find that “enoughness” to keep moving towards what matters in making things happen!
Supplies for the journey…
- Have you joined our exclusive Facebook group?
The Intentional Filling is a place to grow in your faith individually, but also grow through the life experiences, prayers and support of the community members. We’re so excited for you to join us!
- Want a daily reminder to be strong and courageous?
Order the Print Pack of 3 – 8×10 digital prints designed by the community’s own Betsy Gettis, exclusively for the Intentional Filling community.