This is a picture of my home. I have lived here for most of my life and I love it. I never get tired of seeing the beauty that I get to live amongst. The creation around me always helps to connect me with the Creator. God has spoken to me so much here and in other places while I am absorbing my surroundings. No matter my location, he has always been able to draw me to himself by the colors and sensations of my environment.
For the past two years, I feel like God has been really teaching me and showing me so much about His character, who I am and how much I need Him. I continue to disciple others and teach these things but I know He has called me to write. However, in the past two years, I have not written much. I love journals and journaling but I have resisted that too. Sometimes my hesitancy is because at that moment my situation is overwhelming and my words seem inadequate to express what is happening inside of me. Sometimes the effort of unpacking all of the turmoil, confusion, and pain inside seems to exhaust me before I even start. It seems easier to numb myself and push it down with the shallow promise that I will tend to that later. And honestly, I fear my own motives. This fear is the biggest reason for my silence.
I care too much what people think about me. I care too much about my performance, appearance and just generally how I am perceived. I know this about myself and hate it. I am painfully aware of it and catch my thoughts and actions reflecting this more than I want to admit. It is a struggle and it grieves me. I feel that there is a struggle inside at every turn, with the very activity I undertake. Am I doing this, saying this, writing this in order to draw attention to myself? Am I seeking my own glory, my own validation in this moment? And while my self-monitoring is necessary and good, it stops me and holds me back. I had stopped showing outward worship and stopped writing all because I couldn’t guarantee that there wasn’t some part of myself with the wrong motives. I couldn’t say for certain that I wouldn’t check for comments or want to be seen as holy or Godly. I couldn’t squash that part of me that desperately needed validation and affirmation. But in talking with my husband, he pointed out that this was wrong, that I was not trusting that God could use my words, my obedience despite my imperfect motives. And yes, if my major motivation is to seek my own glory then I shouldn’t continue. However, there is always going to be a sinful part of me that wants to try and steal what is God’s and His alone. Dale showed me a quote from N.T. Wright later that evening that says we have to do what we know to be good because He is good and our faith needs to be in Him to bring about what needs to happen. Basically, I need to trust in His sovereignty and His promise to work out what needs to happen regardless of my imperfections. If I withhold his teachings to me, my experience with His love, goodness, and mercy because I can’t guarantee my own purity then I am wrong. I am only being selfish and showing my lack of faith in Him. I am in essence saying that I don’t believe He can do what He says He can. I am saying that “small me” can thwart all powerful God. Sometimes my arrogance and own sense of self-importance astounds me.
God has been teaching me these past two years about what faith really looks like, why I am so bad at having faith and about the sins that enslave me. He is fighting for me, my freedom and my life as He intends me to live it. I look forward to sharing more about what I have learned about the beautiful character of God in future writings. My prayer is that I am true to Him and write with an abandon that does not take into consideration how it will make me appear. I pray that I am able to bring him glory instead of trying to steal it for myself.