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Friday, December 27, 2013

Ponderings of a Self-Proclaimed Wallflower...



I’m forty and have been wondering all my life where I fit into this world.  

Never really a social butterfly, yet not quite an outcast…something of a loner who often still longs for the company of a friend…never popular but not really unpopular either…always looking for my niche but never belonging fully to any group…

I am a wallflower.  I am a Hazel.  I am an observer in the world.  (If you got both of those references, I love you.  If not, read “Perks of Being a Wallflower” by Stephen Chbosky and “The Fault in Our Stars” by John Green.  Seriously.  Do it.  I don't care that you are an adult and they are technically written for young adults.)

But I don’t want to be an observer…
I want to be an extrovert, always the life of the party. 
I want to be the artistic soul who creates beautiful art and music and poetry.
I want to be the intellectual everyone listens to for their sage wisdom.
I want to make a mark in the world.  I want to be remembered.
But I am an observer.

Observers see things others miss.
Observers find meaning and look for connections.
Observers see both sides and have trouble choosing.
Observers see life from the outside in, never fully becoming a part of it all.
Observers catch intimate moments and angry looks and rolling eyes.
I am an observer.

People forget observers. 
When we move away you don’t miss us.
When your lives get busy, you don’t think about us.
When you call the group to go out for drinks our names don’t come up.
It’s not that you don’t like us.  Often you do…but we are so good at blending into the wallpaper that when we are gone it doesn’t feel that different.
It isn’t your fault.  Thank you for trying.

But I am an observer.  
I have tried to change, but I am me.
I will never be one who commands attention.
I will never be the life of the party.
Nobody may ever read much of what I write.
But a handful of people know and love me deeply, and maybe I just need to be ok with that.

Monday, December 16, 2013

You might be depressed if...

I'm feeling a rather sarcastic humor today...it happens...often...

So in that spirit, I'm starting a "you might be depressed if..." post.  Feel free to add any tidbits of thought to my party...

If you welcome illness because it gives you a "real" reason to stay in bed and avoid people..
     you might be depressed

If you decide to clean your desk but haven't in so long you can no longer find it...
     you might be depressed

If cute holiday children's specials anger you because the real world sucks...
     you might be depressed

If you are bored out of your mind but don't have the energy to do anything about it...
     you might be depressed

If you walk in and people run the other way...
     you might be depressed

If everyone else knows the perfect way for you to "get over it"...
     you might be depressed

If people ask you what your dreams are and you realize you don't have any because "what's the point?"...
     you might be depressed

If you are getting more and more convinced that you will be this way forever...
     you might be depressed

If you are jealous when you hear someone else has a terminal illness...
     you might be depressed

So there's my "humor" for the day...oh, one more!

If your "humor" depresses and annoys everyone who reads it...
     you might be depressed!




Thursday, December 12, 2013

Running on Empty

I'm not writing much lately. 

To be honest, I'm not doing much of anything creative except my occasional silly song lyrics.

I've gotten out more lately.  I went to a couple of Christmas parties. I reached out to a friend over coffee. I've somehow managed to cook dinner and do enough laundry to keep my husband in clean underwear.  Last night, the girls and I even started laughing and singing along to Christmas songs. 

No matter what happens, once the moment passes I'm back in the gray...truth be told, sometimes I can even feel it trying to creep into the moment.

And I'm still empty...

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Frustration



This didn't go the way I thought it would.  I started this poem with a different goal in mind, but it ended up here.  It's a compilation of things people say to me in my depression before they walk away.  Eventually, most people do walk away.  Depression drains the victim, their family, and their friends.  It sucks for everyone. 

Frustration

Pray some more
Try this pill
Find your joy
Must be God’s will
Pick yourself up
Just push through
Make it happen
It’s all on you
Take a class
Make a friend
Distract yourself
And it will end
Fake a smile
We all get sad
Snap out of it
Or I’ll get mad
It never stops
I can’t get through
No matter what
I say to you
I have no words
I see no end
And so I walk away
My friend

Monday, October 28, 2013

The Blue Screen of Death

My laptop is about to die...because I'm about to hurl it through a window...

Ok not really, but it IS irritating the heck out of me.  I keep facing the blue screen of death.  Sure, it reboots and works again, but I never know when the next crash will occur. 

So I'm typing away on a droid touchscreen phone...good times.  I'm praying a factory reset will restore my laptop's sanity! 

Now I'm off to do laundry...because THAT is how exciting I am.  Was there a purpose to this?  Not really, but this IS my place to ramble out loud...

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Priceless Love

I almost didn't participate in the blog hop this week.  I struggle with depression, and today isn't great. 

That's just the reason I figured I should go for it!  It may be short, but I will push through this.  I will at least share what God has showed me this week...

 
 
This book keeps touching me in many ways, but this part stopped me in my tracks.  It hit me so hard I actually had to go back and read it again....and tweet about it...and post about it on Facebook.  This is me, every second of every day. 
 
I don't even know where to start:
  • I like my house until I see how much nicer everyone else's is...and then I realize I'm not providing enough for my family.
  • I am proud of my children, but when they make mistakes I feel like I wasn't a good enough parent.
  • I love my lifegroup (small group at church), but I see how they all have more willpower and success and money than me...so I feel like a huge loser. 
  • I enjoy writing my blog, but since I don't much of a following sometimes I want to give up. 
  • Everyone says I am pretty decent at photography, but then I see how amazing others are and realize I will never measure up.
  • I love my husband, but I don't feel like I'm a good enough wife to him.
  • I'm struggling to find the right job, so I am a failure in my career.
I could go on all day...you get the idea.
 
I default to self-loathing.  I'm stuck on that setting.  It's like auto-correct on your phone that always goes straight to the same word.  In my case, that word is "loser". 
 
Sometimes it makes me work harder and harder to please others or get a promotion or have more people read my blog or whatever...other times I just want to give up.  It's exhausting, and I feel like I will never measure up.  Because the truth is, if I'm basing my worth on things or titles or people I never will! 
 
If I get that job I can call myself a _______.  Then I will be enough.
If I get _______ followers on my blog I can call myself a writer.  Then I will be enough.
If my kids graduate with honors from college and get that perfect job, then I will be enough.
If I manage to keep the house perfectly clean and arrange my furniture a certain way and decorate like a magazine picture, then I will be enough.
If I get a better house and stick to a better eating plan and workout more and make more money and and and....then I will be enough.
 
Guess what?  My job will never be enough.  I will always want to improve myself.  I will always want to keep knowing more people are interested in my words.  My kids will always do their own thing and make their own choices.  No matter how new my furniture is, once we live in it a few weeks there will always be something better out there.  There will always be someone skinnier.  There will always be a bigger house. There will always be others that will be "more" than me. 
 
God's love is priceless.  He loves me no matter what.  The problem is that I can't seem to love myself.   
 
I have to learn that I am worthy because GOD SAYS I AM.  
 
And if I can't receive that and let it be enough, nothing else ever will be...
 
 
 

 
 

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Unpacking a Verse: Isaiah 49:23b

Then you will know that I am the Lord;
those who hope in me will not be disappointed.  Isaiah 49:23b


I've decided that for this week's blog hop in Proverb's 31 "A Confident Heart" Study, I will "unpack" Isaiah 49:23b.  See: Verse Mapping 

I considered all the other topics, but since doubt and depression are huge issues for me I didn't feel ready to write about them.  Maybe I will get there...for now, Isaiah 49:23b.
 
The first thing I did was personalize...

Then Heather will know that I am the Lord; when Heather hopes in me she will not be disappointed.

I need to remind myself that He speaks directly to me through His word. 

Next I thought about the word "know".   It doesn't say Heather will speculate or guess or think...it says "know".  That is tough for me.  I want no doubts.  I want to be sure with everything in me that He is Lord and what He says is true.  Theoretically I get it, but I still question Him all the time.  And then it hit me...He is assuring me that I will know.  I will get there. 

But the next part of the verse speaks to that. 

Those who hope in me will not be disappointed.

When Heather hopes in me she will not be disappointed. 

According to Merriam-Webster, "hope" means...

: to want something to happen or be true and think that it could happen or be true

So if Heather wants to know He is the Lord and thinks it could be true she will not be disappointed! 

If I want to "know" and think it can happen it will.



Lord, please help me grow closer to you each day.  Give me such a thirst for you that I make the time to spend with you each day, regardless of anything else going on around me.  Give me the faith to hang on when I feel uncertain and lead me to a place where I have no doubts.  Remind me that my feelings can be deceptive, and I can choose to believe even when I don't "feel" it.  Thank you, Lord, for what you have already done in me!  And thank you for what is to come!

This makes me think of a song that speaks to my desire to know Him more so I thought I'd share.  Be blessed and thank you for reading!

"Desert Soul" by Rend Collective

   





 
     
 
 
 

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Excited Newbie

And we are off on a new adventure...

As some of you know, I am jumping into an online study for the book "A Confident Heart" by Renee Swope.

You should check it out!  Proverbs 31 Online Bible Studies

Anywhoo...I've struggled with low self-esteem, self-doubt, self-loathing, and any other negative self-whatever-you-can-think-of for as long as I can remember.  I drive myself (and often everyone else around me) crazy with it.

I am begging and screaming and praying that God will use this to heal some seriously broken junk within me....not through my power but HIS.

Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.” Matthew 19:26

Actually, God tells us that in his Word MANY times...so I'm holding on to that truth for dear life!

Please keep me in your prayers as I delve into this head first.  Thanks.  Love you!



Friday, October 11, 2013

Because life is just hard...

Life is hard. Not “my life is hard” or “your life is hard”. Life is just hard.

I know it may not be an epiphany for some of you, but this is where I work out the thoughts in my head. Hear me out. 

Last night, I watched the Glee episode where they said goodbye to Finn. The actor, Cory Monteith, died from a deadly combination of heroin and alcohol. He had gone to rehab more than once, but addiction ultimately claimed his life. He was only 31. He was rich and famous and had a beautiful girlfriend (some rumors say fiancĂ©e). His story is one of a kid who got wrapped up in drugs, dropped out of school and was headed nowhere. In a “rags to riches” story straight out of Hollywood, the kid without a future auditioned for a role on Glee and made it. He didn’t get a little bit part either. Cory’s character, Finn Hudson, was the core of the group. In fact, I’d say Finn was what made Glee great. He was the dopey jock that actually cared about people. He was the nice kid that just needed a little encouragement to stand up for his fellow man. He was the cute football player that actually cared enough about the dorky drama chick to go out with her, regardless of what his friends thought. He was that guy you couldn’t hate for his success because he was just so darn sweet. He was the guy who gave you hope when you felt like an outcast. I loved Finn for all that. I loved Cory because he seemed like a genuine nice guy to everyone.

None of that was enough. I think about the struggle he must have fought within himself. I think about how much self-loathing he must have felt when he picked up a bottle or a needle, knowing his girlfriend and family believed he was healing. I think of how he may have felt knowing the whole world was talking about his addiction. I think about the pressure celebrities are under. I think of a sad soul who destroyed his life. Because life is hard.

I read a blog post today from a missionary in Cambodia who helps victims of sex trafficking. It broke my heart. I thought about all those broken people living in slavery, subjected to horrible situations. I thought about a culture where it’s ok to sell your daughter to feed the rest of the family. I thought of girls who volunteer to prostitute themselves to help out. I thought of government officials and police who overlook things because girls aren’t valuable enough to care about. Because life is hard.

Then I thought about my stepmother who died last week, our dog that died Monday, and the fact that I’m still waiting for a job. I remembered crying together as a family. I remembered my ongoing struggle with depression. Because life is hard.

When I get down and feel that emptiness inside, people tell me to focus on my blessings. They remind me of how much worse my life could be, and I get it. The problem isn’t just me. I am broken for this world. I can’t wrap my head around someone that takes joy in hurting another person. I hate thinking about “how much worse” life can be because I weep for this fallen world.   

The victim of sex trafficking.

The child who is forced into the army.

The girl with the smile on her face that is contemplating suicide.

The homeless person sleeping under a bridge.

The loner who has been bullied and is scared to walk into school.

The weird kid who has trouble making friends.

The rape victim who is disowned by her family.

The rich kid who has money but is ignored by his parents.

And I could go on…


The point is that hearing how much better I have it than others makes me incredibly sad. It also makes me realize that it doesn’t matter who you are or where you live. Life is hard. There will always be someone who appears to have it better or worse, but they struggle too. You may not see it, but everyone is dealing with something. So try to understand and be a little nicer to each other…

If this world is so messed up why are we here? I have contemplated that and prayed about it. We spend years and money and talents searching for our purpose, but I believe it is simple. 

We are NOT here to criticize, abuse, and cast stones. We are not here to beat people over the head with legalistic doctrine. We are here to be a light in the darkness. We are here to be Jesus to a lost world. We are here to be living examples of His love.

For you were once darkness, but now you are the light in the Lord.  Live as children of light (for the fruit of the light consists in all goodness, righteousness and truth)and find out what pleases the Lord. Ephesians 5:8-10

“You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven. Matthew 5:14-16

“Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?” Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.” Matthew 22:36-40

You yourselves are our letter, written on our hearts, known and read by everybody. You show that you are a letter from Christ, the result of our ministry, written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of human hearts. 2 Corinthians 3:2-3


If we know Him we are blessed beyond what can be seen in this life. This is not my home. 

"Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God; trust also in me.  In my Father's house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you.  And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am.  You know the way to the place where I am going."  Thomas said to him, "Lord we don't know where you are going, so how can we know the way?"  Jesus answered, "I am the way and the truth and the life.  No one comes to the Father except through me.   If you really knew me, you would know my Father as well.  From now on, you do know him and have seen him."  John 14:1-7

Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal. 2 Corinthians 4:16-18

This world is a mission field, and I am a visitor. Thank you, God! The more I remember that and look to Jesus, the more peace I will have while I am here. 

He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation." Mark 16:15

Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord.  Psalm 27:14

Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself.  Each day has enough trouble of its own.  Matthew 6:34

Because life is just plain hard, but God's got this!

I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us. Romans 8:18
And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.  Romans 8:28
So I choose to look to Jesus for my hope and comfort.  He makes this hard life bearable...and I am so thankful my future is not in this world.  :)

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

The faith of a mustard seed...


I’ve been hiding in my room a lot the past few days.  I tend to do that when life gets overwhelming.  It may not be the healthiest way to cope, but it works as long as I don’t stay there too long.  Introverted by nature, sometimes I just have to step away from everything.  I read.  I pray.  I listen to inspirational music.  And sometimes I just sleep…

Yesterday my stepmother went to be with Jesus.  So I’m in one of those phases today.  I will be ok.  I just need some alone time. 

One positive that comes from me hiding out is I tend to write more, and writing is therapeutic for me. 

Today I am in a weird place.  I’m hiding out, but I’m restless.  Having exhausted all the usual mind-numbing habits (checking facebook, flipping through channels, etc) I decided to open the Bible.  I realize that should be the first thing I do, not the last.  However, today it just is what it is.  I’ve had it next to me on the bed.  I have looked at it several times.  I just haven’t brought myself to open it. 

Why do I do that to myself?   I’m not angry at God.  I’m not being lazy.  (Well, I am being lazy, but not about that…)  So what then?

Something I read in “A Confident Heart” by Renee Swope keeps coming back to mind.  She said “He’s led me beyond believing in Him to really believing Him by relying on the power of His words and living like they are true no matter what my feelings tell me.”  Wow.  I read that a few days ago, but I can’t let it go.  It struck a powerful chord in me.  I think that is why I have such a hard time reading the Bible.  That is why I make progress in my walk but slide back downhill.  I struggle daily to believe Him.  I believe IN HIM, but that isn’t the same thing. 
I believe in a lot of people, but I don't necessarily believe what comes out of their mouths.  Belief in a person just means they exist.  I believe Hitler existed, but I certainly don't believe in the things he said.  I believe in the existence of politicians, but yeah....you get the point...
But Jesus...now there is someone I should have no doubts about!   I mean just think about it.  Jesus made some pretty powerful promises.  So why do I live in fear and doubt?  It boils down to a faith problem.  So I am praying for faith.  I want to be secure in the knowledge that my Father’s got this.  I want turning to God to be as natural as breathing.   I want to kneel at the altar and KNOW that He hears me.

He replied, “Because you have so little faith. Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.”  Matthew 17:20 

Lord, you know my heart.  Open my eyes to your truth and give me the faith to believe everything your Word tells me.  Grow my relationship with you so that I recognize your voice above all others.  Help me be secure and confident in you.  Thank you, Lord, for the changes you have already made in me and the ones that are coming.  In Jesus name I pray, Amen.

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Dysfunctional Forgiveness


This morning our pastor spoke on forgiveness.

I smugly sat there thinking I knew all about the topic.  Now don’t get me wrong, I wasn’t sitting there with an attitude.  I wasn’t being a jerk and with arms folded and a sour expression.  I was honestly happy to be in the house of God.  When I realized what the message was about I remember thinking that we can all use a reminder to pray about whatever cancers we are letting eat away at us.  But God did not just show me a face or two.  I was struck by a tsunami.  To be honest, I’m not even sure I could describe the flood of faces, names and emotions that were pouring through me.  I was overwhelmed.  I was broken.

When I say broken, I’m not exaggerating.  I was destroyed.  Tears streamed down my face.   I was a sobbing mess.  I cried and snotted (calling it like it was) so hard I had no choice but to make my way to the altar because that’s where the tissues are located.  I know my husband loves me, but I thought he might frown at his sleeve being used as a Kleenex.  Finding myself at the altar, I figured I probably needed to go ahead and kneel for some Jesus time.  I’m only half kidding.  Truth be told, I was on autopilot at this point.  My emotions had taken over.

So I cried out to God.

What was so different about this message?  I could tell you before I went today that we should all forgive.  I know revenge hurts us.   I know God calls us to pray for and love our enemies.  I’ve even done some of that.  It wasn’t the part about forgiving that broke me.  It was the part about what forgiveness is NOT that hit me to the core.  I’m going to discuss the main points that really hit home to me this morning.  If you want to dig further, please follow the link and watch the sermon from 9/29/13 (once it is uploaded).  I recommend it highly!


Later in the sermon, pastor pointed out that forgiveness is not overlooking, excusing, minimizing or taking blame for the wrong.  He then pointed out what forgiveness does look like…but this part of the sermon is what knocked me over the head.  I do all of those.  I realized my forgiveness is dysfunctional. 

I am a peacemaker.  My nature is not one of conflict but of reconciliation.  While this is not a bad thing, there are times I let it turn me into a doormat.  I am terrible about doing every one of those things.

“Oh, it’s over.  No big deal.” (Overlooking)

“Hey, I know you were going through a lot.” (Excusing)

“I probably overreacted.” “I know you didn’t mean to blah blah.”  (Minimizing)

“I know I could have been more blah blah.” “It’s my fault.”  (Taking blame)

I go a step further.

I realized today that I have refused to deal with serious hurt because I never acknowledged the wrong that was done to me. 

It is difficult to explain, but I will share a few examples God brought to mind:

I had a great position at work.  It was nothing I’d get wealthy at, but it was perfect for me.  I was helping others daily.  I felt I was in line with my calling.  Right after my father died and my life was turned upside down for an emergency surgery, they “promoted” me…to the one place I absolutely did NOT want to go.  I realized today I had never dealt with the anger.  I was so busy dealing with the stress and mourning my other position.  But it hurt.  They were confident in my ability, so they refused to hear me.  I was healing.  I was exhausted.  I was not ready.  They did not care.  Looking back, they did me a grave injustice.  I had a rough time in that new location and ended up requesting to step into another position.  So I turned it all inward and beat myself up.  I thought of all the things I could have done differently.  I never just acknowledged the wrong that was done to me. 

After that, I was offered a “dream” position elsewhere that turned into a nightmare.  It did not end well.  I thought I had forgiven them, but I haven’t.  What they did to me hurt my family.  It sent me into a spiral of depression, and it was just plain wrong.   I won’t go into details, but I’m not the first or last of their victims.  I realized today that I need to seriously ask God for help with this one.  I’m NOT over it, but I will no longer torture myself about what I did wrong.  I didn’t.  THEY wronged ME.  Yes, I need to let it go.  But they are in the wrong.  I acknowledge that. 

There are many other examples that are too personal to share at this time.  (Tsunami, remember?)

Pastor said, “When you minimize the wrong you cheapen the forgiveness.”   Think about that.  Jesus never made light of anyone’s sin.  He just accepted it and forgave them.  We are to look to Jesus as our example.  I’m working on it…

Though details will stay at the altar, I am praying for God’s healing and the ability to move on.  I see now that a lot of the blame I’ve been holding onto is not mine at all.  I’m not healed, but I will be.  I am standing on God’s promises.   He will get me through this, and I will come out stronger.   

Friday, July 26, 2013

Planting Seeds


Recently, God has convicted me that I need to spend much more time in His word.  The challenge is that I am not following someone else’s study. There is nothing wrong with studies led by others, and in the future I have no problem doing them.  But I have been convicted that God wants to speak to our hearts sometimes without being colored by another person’s opinion.  So I am praying and letting Him lead me in understanding.
Why Ephesians?  I’m not really sure.  It may stem way back to youth camp.  The focus one summer was Ephesians.  It must have been powerful because I remember it, and there are actually very few things I remember vividly: 
·         Dawson (Noswad) McAllister and the snot jokes

·         Bright yellow t-shirts

·         Some cute guy at Devil’s Bathtub (It was a rock basin type thing…hey, I didn’t name it!)

·         The gum tree (kinda gross actually)

·         The wasps that were EVERYWHERE

·         COOKIE DOUGH (eaten while feigning a headache to avoid sports I wasn’t into at all)

·         A few pranks in the dorms (of course I was completely innocent...hang on while I adjust my halo)

·         An embarrassing moment at the pool where I lifted my t shirt to show a counselor my swimsuit and flashed more than intended…the only moment of my life I was thankful that the boys and girls didn’t swim together

·         Being down one evening and receiving a “smile, Jesus loves you and so do I” note from a girl I didn’t know very well (yes, it impacted me that much)

·         Rededicating my life to Jesus and being shaken to the core

·         Quiet time with God every morning
…and the book of Ephesians
Youth leaders, keep it up.  They may seem like they don’t hear.  They may drive you crazy.  They may put Vaseline on the toilet seat or weave dental floss throughout the bunks at church camp.  They may be horrible to one another at times.
They may also have a tiny seed planted in their heart that will grow into something beautiful years later.
Now it is my turn.  Hopefully I can plant a seed in someone's heart that will bless them almost thirty years later.  How great is that?

 

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Kingdom Mindedness


My heart is broken for this world.  There is so much pain and hunger and fear and injustice.  It’s often difficult for me to find a balance between caring and letting it all overwhelm me.  Maybe that is the reason missionaries and the people they serve have been on my mind so much…

I’m not sure how many of you know that I felt called to go into missions when I was thirteen.  Over the next few years, I convinced myself that it was just a “church camp high”.  My logic was that there is no way God would ever call ME.  Psh.  Who am I?  Nothing.

I have gone back to this over the years.  Sometimes I feel the pull so strongly it threatens to overwhelm me.  I get so frustrated by the fact that I seem stuck where I am.  I cry out to God, “If you want me to go, then show me the way!!!”  At other times it’s a gentle tug…somewhere in the back of my mind I feel His presence urging me on to something.  The closer to God I get, the harder it is to ignore. 

What purpose could He have for the likes of me?

I have recently had a bit of an epiphany.

As Christians, we are ALL called to help others.  That is not specific to me.  I guess I’m selfish because that bummed me out.  I want to be special, but I’m just like everyone else.  That is humbling. 

And maybe that’s what God needed me to see…

I am ordinary.

I am nothing.

HE IS EVERYTHING! 

Think about that. 

I tend to have a lot of self doubt, but it’s NOT ABOUT ME!  I’m sure I’d mess that job up, but it’s NOT ABOUT ME!  There is no way I have the qualifications/money/time/ability, but it’s NOT ABOUT ME!!!

Pride is an issue for some.  I was sure that wasn’t my problem because I was always down on myself.  But guess what?  That is EXACTLY my issue!  When I beat myself up and think I’m not good enough, I’m basically telling God “yeah, there’s no way you can make this happen”.  Why do I do that?  Because somewhere deep inside I think I have to fix myself before I can do anything for God.  I feel like I have to be “good enough” before I can be used.  God doesn’t want me to fix myself and then jump onto a pedestal of holiness!  God wants me to submit to Him now. 

Broken 

Depressed

Unworthy

If I am full of myself I am not full of Him. 

Stop and think about that. 

If I am full of myself I am not full of Him.   Negative thoughts of self are still thoughts of self. 

I need to let God out of the box.  It isn’t a specific job in a specific place I should worry about.  God wants me to help others around me all the time, wherever I am.  It’s going from a ME mentality to a KINGDOM mentality.  He may never send me to a mission in Africa or Haiti or Costa Rica.  He may use me to help a neighbor or a child or someone I may never know on a blog.  The term “missionary” should be wiped out of Christian language.  It divides us.  We put them on a holy pedestal. Think about it.  We get stuck in that “us and them” mentality!  Don’t get me wrong, I appreciate what they are doing, and I love hearing about how God is moving around the world.  But God has called each and every one of us to spread His love!  We are ALL called to be missionaries. He just has us in different fields.