It’s been a probing thought in my heart the last several weeks that everyone’s relationship with the Lord is completely different. Some relate to Him more closely as a best friend, speaking with Him most commonly in the way they would talk to their dearest friend. Some are incredibly intimate with God as a Father, approaching most conversations from a childlike perspective. I don’t know necessarily if I have one “mode” of relation to Him. But I do know that just as my siblings and I have different relationships with our father, we have different relationships with our Father. It’s about personal make-up and how we were created to relate to Him.
There are some things that the Lord tells me to do that I have no problem with doing. He commands me lovingly to do one thing or another, and I generally do what He says because of my trust in Him. But sometimes, the Lord tells me let go of something that I want nothing more than to cling to.
[Cling] : to hold onto something or someone very tightly; to stay very close to someone for emotional support, protection, etc.
Something I’ve always struggled with is finding the balance between fighting for myself and standing up for myself. Fighting for myself looks like something I’ve described in previous posts – feeling attacked, as if I’m being backed into a corner. So the boxing gloves come out and I fight back, because it feels like no one is in my corner with me. Standing up for myself is knowing my worth, my values, and the way I deserve to be treated, and loving myself enough to not allow those things to be disrespected.
There are some days I wake up and feel free – free to talk to God, to tell Him my thoughts and feelings. I feel free to smile at Him and tell Him good morning. I don’t feel an anvil of guilt resting on my chest or a concrete wall of my own design hiding me from the Lord. There are some days I feel like He loves me. And honestly, there are some days I doubt that He does. And if He does, it has to be forced, annoyed, fed up love.
Warning: This post is coming from an introvert whose natural tendency is to retreat to solitude regularly.
[weariness] : lacking strength, energy, or freshness because of a need for rest or sleep; reluctance to see or experience any more of something.
There is a certain weight on my chest that sits heavily, making breaths shallow and my body sluggish. I don’t have the same energy or enthusiasm for life. I lose my chipperness. My smile becomes infrequent. I either sleep too much or way too little. More than likely, I begin to slip on responsibilities and in my relationships. I have a constant desire to run – to hide under my desk where no one can find me and no one can ask me for anything. I enclose myself in a shell and focus on the task in front of me with blurry vision and a mind pulled in thirty different directions.
Inbred within my flesh is the desperate need to defend myself.
To protect myself.
To guard my own heart.
When backed into a corner, there is an instinctual response of raising a wall, lifting my fists in defense, and fighting back. When words fly and I feel under attack, I slip on my independent pants and defend my character, because obviously everyone is calling it into question. When there is a wrong tone of voice- accusing, judgmental, belittling- I snap back in bitterness, because obviously they are against me.
Something that the Lord has impressed upon my heart the last week has been how dangerous the territory of my mind is. When focused on Him, the thoughts that fly through my head on a day-to-day basis can help maintain an attitude of faith. But when my focus is not on Him, my thought life can produce an attitude of fear.
[mourning]: feel or show deep sorrow or regret for (someone or their death); feel regret or sadness about (the loss or disappearance of something).
I don’t know if any of you are in a time in your life when you’re mourning the loss of something or someone. If you’ve lost a family member or close friend to tragic death. If a dream has died and your future seems to be in shambles. If you lost a relationship that was supposed to be forever. If some part of you or some significant part of your life has died, you are given full permission to mourn.
I haven’t written anything in a little while. More than anything, it’s because I’ve been off in my own little world, introverting and introspecting. But it’s also because the Lord has been majorly chiseling away at me this Summer. I’ve been asking questions like,
“Who are You?”
“Do I actually know You or just the idea of You?”
“If there was no one else in the world to compare myself to, who would I be?”
Lately, the enemy has been attacking from all sides. I’m sure I’m not the only one. He finds me at a weak moment and pounces – whispering lies about my past, about my reputation, about my character, about my worthiness of a godly husband, about the voice that I know is the Lord’s.
It’s almost always between the hours of midnight and 2 am that he comes and tries to find a chink in my armor. Sometimes he does, sometimes he doesn’t. But most recently, I’ve noticed myself accepting many of the things the he says about me. I can’t imagine how painful it must be for the Lord to watch my heart crumple in belief of the lies that the enemy tells me.