I have been doing a lot of reflecting on this time in my life to see what the Lord might be trying to speak to me (nothing happens in vain friends, God is always at work!). Here’s what I have been thinking about…sometimes things have to get worse before they get better. This has totally been true for me over this past year. Remember the cleanse I did, eesh, that was rough but after it I experienced some very marked improvements in my health. Oh, but then I started doing more this past month when softball practice started. That’s when the couldn’t sleep, waking up in the middle of the night being dehydrated stuff got really bad. Yah, not fun. You know this is partly why I didn’t even try working out or even really walking that much over the past few months, because I would get so exhausted, wouldn’t sleep well and would be just plain hungry and thirsty all the time. So, I avoided it…like the plague. However, once softball started, there was no avoiding it, I had to face it like a (wo)man. Yes, it was difficult, painful, confusing, discouraging, and frustrating to go through but the great part is I am actually feeling much better.
So here’s what has been swirling around in my little head (I little frightening I know), I wonder how often we avoid the difficult things in our lives because it’s too difficult, painful, confusing, discouraging, and frustrating. It could be a relationship (friendship/spouse/family/etc.) in your life that instead of working at you just avoid because it’s “easier” or it could be a weight loss goal, an area of sin, the abuse you experienced as a child, that spiritual battle you’ve grown weary in. Friends, sometimes (and I’d argue most times) in order for us and others to experience healing, wholeness, and just something better it will get worse before it gets better (i.e. think the death of Christ)!
Sure, it may be “easier” to avoid, but it only keeps us in our cycles of defeat, so in reality it is not easy at all, it’s quite burdensome. Fear is an awful thing. Many of us don’t dig through the junk in our own hearts, relationships, marriages, and families because of this one little thing called, fear. We stop pursing our goals in life, whether that be weight loss or something else, because the fear of failure, disappointment, or we just do not believe we are worth something better. IF we started working on things, pursuing Truth, and seeking godly counsel—our world, our places of safety would crumble. Yet, that’s where healing begins, but that’s scary (like a dog chasing after you scary).
The longer I walk this journey, the more I realize just how awesome our God is and how much freedom He has for us through His Son Jesus Christ. The more I walk in the Holy Spirit, living an abandoned, authentic life concerning my sin; I find I have more power to walk in victory with Jesus. You better believe there is something far better for you in this life. Beloved, the Lord Jesus not only goes with you, but before you. You can trust Him. Pursue authenticity, and don’t be afraid to go to those painful, scary places. You are worth it! The more you avoid them, the more chained and controlled by them you become. Instead of bowing to them, bow to the Lord Jesus. And don’t you give up the fight when it gets tough, because it will. You push through and press in to the Lord Jesus Christ in ways like never before, relying on His Spirit, believing in His Word! “Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ.” (Eph. 1:3)
Gracious Father, in this life we will suffer. Who are we to think that we are exempt from suffering, as Christ suffered, so shall we. Lord, may we bear in our bodies the markings of the Lord Jesus Christ, who suffered and died so we could be free. Forgive us when we stay in defeat because we are too afraid to trust You with the unknown. Grant us the courage to trust You, even when it gets worse before it gets better. There is much more for us in Christ. Father, we believe, we love you, be exalted. Amen.