I’ve tried several times to write about this, only to find my fingers paralyzed at the keyboard. I’ve experienced God at work enough during this past year to understand that the lack of words meant that God was saying, “No. Not yet.” And so I stepped away, waiting for God’s timing.
I’ve gone through rough times before. I’ve been through the refining fire and been taught tough lessons that have brought me closer to God. Those times were always accompanied by an obvious difficult situation – like the illness and death of my mom, or a major job transition for Matt that gave way to confusion and discouragement.
But this. This came at a time when all was well. Better than well, in my opinion. A thriving marriage, healthy children, growing businesses, a time of living our dreams. Life was good – and I asked God to show me His power and how He could use me best. After all, we should never get to a point that we feel we’ve arrived. To whom much is given, much is expected (Luke 12:48). I believe God expected more of me. I asked Him to show me what that meant. And He said, “I can’t until you give up your self.”
I didn’t really know that was what He was asking at first. All I knew was that life as I knew it began to change. I began to have more anxiety. I was having frequent migraine headaches. I began struggling with what has always come naturally for me, like inviting people into my home, giving of myself to others – wanting to be with people at all.
Which heaped guilt onto my anxiety. Didn’t God call us to love others? To serve? To sacrifice? To give of ourselves? What was the matter with me? What kind of Christian was I anyway?
I had found myself in the midst of spiritual battle, wrestling constantly with who I was, what God required of me, how I was supposed to love people, and in the midst of it all, how I was supposed to put dinner on the table.
(And here you thought that the Getting Ahead in the Kitchen eCourse and eBook were written as a normal part of my site. Truly, they were born out of my own need, solidifying everything I’ve always shared about preparing healthy food for days you don’t have time or energy to cook. In the midst of struggling emotionally and spiritually, keeping myself physically healthy became more important than ever.)
I’m getting a little bit ahead of myself. For now, here are some of the truths He is teaching me:
- When we ask God to show us what He wants us to do, He will show us. When we listen, He will speak.
- Spiritual battle is exhausting. Allowing ourselves to rest in the midst of it is wise and necessary. Taking care of our physical health is very important to our emotional health.
- God is faithful to always provide what we need.
- Sometimes we are called to serve; sometimes we are called to be served.
- The Holy Spirit convicts us of our guilt when we are sinning, which leads us to repentance. But the nagging, worrisome, hopeless, unhealthy guilt that torments our thoughts does not come from the Father. It comes from listening to lies from the enemy.
Are you hanging on to unhealthy guilt that you need to let go of? Join me in drop-kicking it in the name of Jesus. Trust me when I say that hanging on to guilt keeps us focused on self instead of our Savior.