After reading an article online about topics that don’t always come up at church and need to be talked about I realized I think my church does a great job at it but I hide my struggles terribly well. Unless your my very closest friend or you can read minds I can do a pretty good job at making life look ‘flawless” or too “easy”
Its so hard to be honest with our struggles because when we admit we are struggling that means we are weak.. or so we think.
Why can’t it just be we are strong, courageous, and humble enough to admit that we aren’t perfect and never will be.
We are too worried about what peoples opinions will do to our pride.
What would happen if we shared our struggles publicly and someone found comfort knowing they aren’t crazy, they aren’t alone, and they have a friend to talk to.
So here I go, these are my top 5 struggles of 2013:
1. Anxiety/Panic attaches: I have never struggled with emotional breakdowns, terrible doubts, or anything of the sort. In my family you could say we were raised as tough little world changers, we did our best to not show emotion and get the job in hand done. This year I couldn’t tell you how many times I have balled, ugly cried, and couldn’t breathe do to the fact of being frustrated or someone saying something and it triggering a complete mental breakdown. It sounds so immature and stupid and that why I don’t share with many people about it but it has shown me I can’t always be in control and to cling to my Father in prayer and comfort during these times when the lies become to real and make my body basically shut down until I can calm down.
2. Lust/sex/shame: I have not always been a Christian, I was born with hope in my heart but I’v always been the kid that walks on the boundaries to see the reactions. I had hopes long ago to only have sex with one man and that to be my husband for ever and ever after, the end. That didn’t happen, I got caught up in a sweet guy that pursued me for months and treated me really well, we were very close friends before and I had never let a guy get to know me so intimately and so my own morals and hopes were tossed aside for a time with this guy. Since then I have chosen to do my best at following God but because of my history I still struggle with the lust and the want of sex. It was created to be this amazing thing to enjoy, but within the boundaries of marriage. I made a decision out of selfish desire and lust and then we broke up. I continued to allow myself to be used because I didn’t know what else to do and it presented me with lots of lies I sometimes still believe. That choice I made a few years back broke me and still effects me in the way that I still carry some shame with that, and a tugging need to want to do that again, even though I know how badly it might set me back again.
3. Selfishness/expectations: This year I have unfortunately been so scared to not be okay that I became a selfish person. Instead of being honest and brave going to people with my struggles I have faked and hid my struggles hoping noone would find me weak, or not good enough. I took to self pity alone with myself and said I would not burden people, but really I was just trying to hold onto my pride and control WAY to tightly. This lead to me trying to do a lot for people but them not knowing I NEEDED them too and so my expectations of friends kept failing me. I wasn’t very open with them about needing them too and so I found myself very alone this year and instead of being a super great friend I sat in my selfishness and pride.. pouting.
4. Lonliness/dependency and need for a significant other: Because of failed relationships in the past and because my last relationship we talked seriously about getting marriage/love which I have never done before, I let go of God’s hand and held tightly to people. I held tightly to their thoughts, words, and actions towards me. I very quickly got let down because as many of us know God is the only one that can fulfill me and bring me hope and truth. I got so caught up in people loving me, people thinking I am worthy, and people thinking I am good enough, that it became overwhelming and seemed almost impossible to hear Gods opinions/truths about me. I still struggle with feeling lonely as I see so many couples and friend cliques but I know that even if I had all that, that only God can bring fulfillment and truth to my heart.
5. Grace: With all the above I have struggled with accepting Gods Grace and forgiveness. I know He loves me but sometimes I look at my long list of failures and I let it make me think God’s grace isn’t enough for me. The thing is “Even before he made the world, God loved us and chose us in Christ to be holy and without fault in his eyes.” (Ephesians 1:4) He believed this so much that He sent His son to die for every single person on this earth a terrible death so we could have bridge to living eternally in the kingdom with Him.
God’s love, grace, forgiveness is so big we can’t understand it fully but through all my struggles this year I have realized how beautiful God is how beautiful He can make my life if I let go and let Him in.
“Cause I am a sinner
If its not one thing its another
Caught up in words
Tangled in lies
You are the Savior
And you take brokenness aside
And make it beautiful
-I hope this could help someone know they are not alone in their struggles, give them inspiration to look to the Father for comfort and purpose.
Shelby Anne (A hopeful sinner)