Sorry I haven’t been blogging very much—I just started college! And let me tell you things have been cray-zy!
Now, college has brought a lot of my emotional and spiritual struggles to the surface. It’s a new place, a transitional place and it is common for vulnerabilities to resurface when one is not feeling confident.
Today I am going to talk about my vulnerability.
I don’t share this to get sympathy, but I share this because it is an issue that I have written extensively about. It is an issue that I have wrestled with for a long time and it is an issue that Jesus has finally brought healing towards.
What is this issue?
It is the issue of abuse. That is right, abuse. Abuse of authority, sexual abuse and a power struggle in my relationship. That’s right—my struggles with men in my life have gone deeper than a simple “he didn’t respond to my text.” But do you know what? I never treated my problems as if they were deeper; I acted as if they were menial and easy to get over. Obviously, it was not the case; and when I struggled with grief I became even more frustrated with myself.
“Why can’t I just get it right?”
“Why can’t I move on from my life?”
“Why am I so weak?”
All of these thoughts flooded my mind. I struggled. I struggled big time and for the first time in years God has lifted a burden off my shoulders. For the first time in years I feel like God is looking inside my heart and repairing its pieces. For the first time in years I feel the love of Jesus completely encompass my body– not just my worship of God–but also His undying love for me.
Why am I talking about this?
Well. To be honest, a part of me does not know. The other part of me though looks at the readers who I talk to, and even those who I don’t. You are all readers who are struggling with something. Anything. And to those readers I want to testify about God’s goodness.
God saved me. God saved me from my sins and from venomous relationships. When God saved me I felt that I had to turn from sin. And I did, that is called repentance.That is biblical. However, somewhere in my mind I got the false notion that repentance also meant instant healing. You know, I would tell myself, “I’ve turned from that life. Don’t think about it , don’t think about it.” and so I wouldn’t think about it or at least I fought myself when I did. And even though I did my best to abstain from my past life, I never really could. Because I was never really healing. I was just abstaining. And my self control could only hold on for so long.
So for me (and for you it may look different), I kept falling back to abusive relationships. I kept seeking things that were harmful to me because I never gave myself a chance to heal. I thought that repentance had me covered, and that my job was to simply turn from my old life to my new life. But it was not that easy, and the struggle (not to mention impossible task) of instant healing brought me much pain.
I formed a treacherous cycle. . .I kept falling back into sin. Then beating myself up. Repenting. Then falling back. Beating myself up. Repenting… and then back. Over and over I did this. Over and over I hated myself. Until recently. I went to a counselor and spilled the beans. Spilled the beans about my past and my present and my fears of the future. Everything. I laid it all out on the table and I wondered, why did I never do this before? Why did I have to go to a counselor to be honest about my emotions?
The answer: Fear.
I was afraid. I was afraid of what people would say. I was afraid of what people would think. I was overwhelmed by my story. It was ugly, there was no picket fence but rather an ugly past stained with sin and brokenness. I thought, I can’t share my life with others! My life doesn’t hold any significance. It could not possibly be a life from which a disciple is formed. It’s too messy– it’s not a life for one of God’s very own. A Christian cannot have this kind of pain in their story.
How very wrong. How very wrong I was. Because let me tell you something. When you become a Christian you do not carry your own story. You carry God’s story. His story of healing, love and redemption. . . and the story of Jesus and His cross.
This is my point. This is my testament to God and this is what I want all those hurting to remember. God is not condemning you. He is weaving you into His story. God’s main purpose is not to clean you from sin, it is to restore you to perfect union with Him. There is a difference. A simple “sin wash” is a minimal commitment. God is not interested in minimally committing to you. He doesn’t just want you to just abstain from sin, He wants you to overflow with the splendor and majesty of His glory. He will cleanse you of your sin, so He can then lavish you with His goodness.
Do you see? It is a three part process. Repentance, Redemption, Restoration. And what God wants for you and your life is so much deeper than turning from your past, it is far greater. He wants you to turn to Him. You see, every disciple has a messy story (some to greater degrees than others) but everyone has a struggle and a failure. Everyone. And it does not make you a failure if you have failures in your life. It makes you human. But instead of denying their existence or beating ourselves up for our faults we must glorify God through them. And even more importantly we must let the God of the universe, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, and the God who spoke tenderly to the Samaritan woman into the doors of our hearts. Because God wants to meet you where you are.
Struggling in your marriage? It’s ok.
Struggling with your finances? It’s ok.
Struggling with your pride? It’s ok.
It will be ok. Not because of you– but because of the God to whom you kneel. Don’t lie to Him about your struggles. He already knows anyways. Tell Him where you have fallen and where the world has failed. Grieve freely in front of your Lord. Let Him find you. Let Him love on you.
You don’t have to do anything on your own.
He is with you.
He loves you.
He will heal you. Let Him heal you.
I know that I have a problem, but it took me a while to admit it. But eventually I finally admitted that I had not completely turned from the abuses of my old life– rather I craved it– because at times it seemed like the only thing that I deserved. At times I felt like death is the only thing that could come out of my failed life. I felt like it was the only thing written in my story. It was a lie from the devil. It was a dark place but I finally admitted this. I finally wailed out to God. I told Him everything.
And He met me.
Right where I was.
He meets me.
Right where I am.
And He is healing me.
He will heal you too.
. . . Just let Him do His work.
He is forever faithful.
Turn to Him today. May His love and His peace cover your heart and soul tonight.