Every time I get to write, wow, the catharsis. I am a sharer, so if my sharing helps you, that blesses me. I have had many conversations in the past week from those of you who show me that I am not alone in feeling withered and wilty* in this season of life. We admit it, we know we need Jesus–so what are we going to do about it?
My dear friend Laura sent me a facebook message that challenged me to follow through on what I learned with that time with the Lord, recall it, and not just leave it at that day that I wrote the last blog. She said “what is one small action you can take today to nourish what is withering?” and the challenge “I want you to see you find growth and life in those weary, withering places.” WHAT. A. GIFT to receive that message.
1) I am so grateful I have people who will speak that challenge to me 2) I hope you have someone (several) in your life to do that for you. But, here I am encouraging you in the same.
Our culture values authenticity, but sometimes we leave it at that. We spill our stuff and leave it there still withering. There is value in coming together as we struggle, but let’s spur one another on toward love and good deeds. We are not encouraging toward a pinterest worthy perfection or masking the hurts and weariness there. 2 Corinthians 10:5 challenges us to “take every thought captive to obey Christ.”
What have I gained from time with the Lord this past week? (floundering not perfect time)
1) Each time I have spent, I am encouraged all the more and reminded more of His presence and His power. It is building on each other. He is so gracious. I feel less far away, and I am reminded more in daily life of His heart. That has translated some in me remembering to be gracious and kind and step back when I want to lash out and lose it. I said SOME. Though, that time makes me remember to hunger for more.
2) He has graciously pointed to some places in me that do not line up with a healthy life. It is not a burden to look at them like it would be if this came out of guilt or shoulds. I have felt loved by Him, and, in that, I know that it is time for some changes. Most of those right now actually involve what I am putting into my body. Good bye to my beloved Diet Cokes (I have actually been on that journey for awhile–but I realize even more so that I depend on them). Gluten and excess sugar–goodbye. I have used things I consume to help me cope rather than the Lord, and now I am reminded of His sufficiency. I am not doing this perfectly, and I am not declaring this is for you. Just sharing about the journey he is walking me through. I am limiting caffeine intake because I can tell it is making a huge difference in aches and pains and sluggishness later in the day. I actually feel much better the days I do not have it. It is a journey–and it is so interesting that He is connecting the physical, emotional and the spiritual with me in teaching me about my overall health.
3) This season is still wearying, but I am not drowning quite as much because I am reaching for my Anchor. I just want to encourage you to reach for your Anchor, too. There is nothing or no one that can be a Savior to you other than Jesus. We turn to less than Messiahs all too often only to be bitter.
What one step do you need to take today to connect with Him?
*Props to my friend Courtney who shared the word wilted with me–perfect.