Terrified with Faith

I am at a point in my life where I am being pushed forward into the unknown somewhat, wondering if can I do it.  Questioning myself and God of how this situation A78CCC54-9AE9-4C38-A21F-22660E7039D5had all come about so perfectly but the doubt hovering over me with what if I fail?  The balancing act with many encouraging me and those that I have shared my hesitation with, their encouragement that will support me either way. At times, that did not help, still feeling at a loss as to what to do. In the past few weeks, a part of me desiring that somebody would say, just do it, taking my hand and leading me, helping me and conquer this fear. I’m scared, okay terrified.

BC147DB3-4AD4-429B-A91E-E087A8314780I am sure I am not alone when trying to make a big decision, allowing faith to manifest but fear lurking around every corner.  We all have to make decisions in life with jobs, marriage, education, purchases, etc.  Adulting is hard, even at my age.

As I was being encouraged by a lawyer friend yesterday to go forward and expressing my fear and hesitation, I asked him if he experienced this when going to law school. Without hesitation, he said he was terrified. Today, he is one of the finest lawyers I know. His position just did not happen overnight, as he had to face fear head on.  Just his words of, ‘I was terrified’ brought comfort, knowing what I am feeling is normal. Sometimes knowing normal is not just a dryer setting, can take pressure off of an anxious mind. I realized that when with my former counselor, a lot of what I thought and felt was quite normal. It is the shame-based thoughts that keep us bound by thinking we are not normal, something is wrong with us.

Dealing with the weight of this matter on my mind and 5C5859A9-7215-4E34-AA86-FE897089F51Bmaking a final decision this week, I felt encouraged upon waking.  I have dreams and sometimes they are so real, just like this morning. Sitting quietly in a church service but next to a side wall not in a pew, my pastor came over to me. He took my hands and held them, looking at me and just said, ‘You know He is with you.’ How encouraging! Yes, it was a dream a spiritual dream, but I do believe and know that God can speak to us in them. Perhaps because our mind is quiet and He can get our (my) attention.

ID0F6AF27-7611-4796-BB3D-EEC4392F8B2Dn my quiet time this morning, of course, with coffee nearby and before I start my day cleaning and enjoying my home, I was reading scripture.  Just so happened, guess what I turned to and read first?  Isaiah 41:10 “So do not fear for I am with you; do not be dismayed for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” How awesome it is to know that God’s Words are LIFE words soothing our soul, that brings calmness to our spirit and giving power and joy to our day.  He is with me. He is with you. We just have to quiet our minds, whether sleeping and in a dream to be reminded or in the moment acknowledging Him as we go about our busy, chaotic lives.  That’s God. Trust Him.

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9 Bible Promises About Your Sleep, Dreams and Night Hours

 

Accelerate

3E25D218-716C-4109-83EC-BB9EA2750E57There have been so many years to where I was stuck in a depressed state of mind, body and spirit in my life that I did not see a way through the dark pit of despair.

Walking aimlessly day to day from home to work and back again was my life. No goals, desires or dreams, total hopelessness. Wearing the mask of a smile while tending to the bandages wrapped around my broken and frail heart. Will there ever be more, I would ask so often C4F4348B-5A7D-4E57-B429-29DF2B769643within myself of my life here on out. I saw no hope.

Now it seems that this past year, everything has been accelerated, as in making up for lost time.

Last September, I took a medical class that was completed in eight weeks. Let me tell you, it was accelerated and more so for this old mind to grasp, but I passed with a 94.

Now I joke when I tell those that need to know, like a new doctor recently, that I am presently seeing two counselors a week. While they overlap in topics at times, one I feel is to get me through a loss through feelings of abandonment and where I lost ground somewhat and the other is to push me forward. So, I told 9CFB3676-1B38-4E3B-ADD1-13B42DF06D9Fhim that I am in accelerated counseling, and we both laughed. Funny but true. I have lost too much in my life and I need to regain my years back, as my age is adding up to numbers that I find I shake my head at in shock. I want more in life and I know the Lord has more for me.

Part of my loss has been in my marriage, as I have mentioned in my writings at times.  Recently, talking to a sweet, young girl in our office the other day when she dropped off paperwork for me, well basically listening as she spoke more to my assistant.  I could not help but ache for her and encourage her before leaving. Here she is living with a guy for seven years, recently engaged of which I think pushed by her and understandably so, after seven years together. They are both miserable and she wants out but feels stuck, as she feels seven years will be wasted.  Hopelessly feeling she has to start again.  In my mind and my assistant’s mind, it is better to leave now before marriage, house and children.  Run sweetheart run! Who knows but God what is in store for her but hopefully more than a sad, depressed and unhappy relationship whether married or not. Good news, she left.

AB9D14D6-708F-442F-8401-55BBDF102E48So many things have happened in this last year moreso that I cannot help but see the Hand of God at work. While it was rough and I took a nosedive last fall/winter, I was being pulled through with my nose to the grind in the medical class, while most times falling apart in an emotional chaos afterward.  Another approach was with the acceleration with counseling this year that was put in place to keep me focused. Most importantly, trusting the Lord that He surely has a purpose and a plan for my life.  There is light at the end of this tunnel and I am going through.D2B58A4D-9428-4B02-898D-0BA474E1422B

We all need to make a choice of staying stuck or moving through. I was stuck for way too long, still am, but I want more. As they say, no hell or high water will stop me now. I have a goal, which is to move forward. Unsure what and where forward is right now but I know to keep going. I want the last course of my life to be fun, enjoyable knowing the Lord loves me and is with me.

D3529520-8857-4DFA-A404-23D03899AAD7You, too, have a choice. Unsure where you are, whether spinning your wheels or stuck in the mud, as I have been there. Decide you want more. Take care of you. If you need counseling to figure life out, get counseling. If your energy level is depleted, go see your doctor and get blood work. It might be that you are low in iron or off in other areas within your body. If depressed, get an anti-depressant for a bit to get over the hump. Go for a walk, if just for fifteen minutes or stand outside (then you can say… you are Outstanding) and look around and breathe. It is a start. Nobody can do this for you. You have to make a choice that you want more and that you are important enough. You Are!

https://www.thegospelcoalition.org/article/god-can-restor-your-lost-years/

Escape Plan

33D9F4A0-764B-49AD-9BCD-7CB884F1E342I’m leaving on a jet plane, don’t know when I’ll be back again.

No doubt, at certain times or in joking, the lyrics of that song were sung and maybe deep down wishing it to be true.  I know I have, many times.

Remembering a time while talking to my counselor yesterday, there was a time I did take a jet plane and flew out west to visit a friend.  I needed time away and was desperate to get out of my life, an escape. It was probably the worst time of my life, feeling lost and numb and wanting to walk away from everything and everybody. Trusting few as my trust in others was growing smaller and smaller.  How could I open up to a pastor or church leadership when the preaching and so forth was on faith, trust God, your joy is in the Lord, etc. Why be subjected to more pressure of not having enough faith and be disillusioned even further of my church family that seemed as distant and trustworthy as my own family.  Where do I go?

Thankfully, through these years, I knew enough and was strong enough in my Christian walk to know that the Lord was my only hope.  I have always heard through many sermons that we must know the Bible enough to grasp hold to the words as if we did not have a Bible to reference.  Plus, we cannot depend upon others to walk this Christian way for us.  I was learning that well through this dark, lonely wilderness.  I had nobody.  At times I felt invisible and walking through a maze blindly.

Since that time, I have managed and all by the Grace of God.  When I felt so alone, I knew deep down that He knew my name and He knew where I was and I had to say those words aloud so many times in desperation, “Lord, you know my name and you know where I am.”  It has been hard at times and still feeling my way through the maze of chaos and confusion but the end is in sight, I know it is. There is joy and then there is fear and sometimes they seem to slap one another within my mind.13578DBA-BF26-4992-B77D-DC5431BEBD1B

I am at a point again to escape but this time to settle some things and get a new perspective, alone.  Just me and God.  A sweet friend said the other day that she did this at a pivotal point in her life, just her and God hashing it out.  That is exactly where I am.  To escape as there has to be more and I need His direction.

966C8FC2-09BE-4567-AE40-A02F221B38AELife can be overwhelming and we can be consumed with hopelessness in situations.  If you make no changes in your circumstances, nothing will change.  We have to make a decision to want more.  I seriously started with this change back in 2014.  It seems like forever ago but there was a lot to sift through and I do not regret the time spent, financial aspect or the emotions expressed.  I am not the same person I was when I walked in my counselor’s office the first day, back in September, 2014.  I had to and you have to make a decision to start taking care of YOU.  Nobody will do this for you.

Sometimes we have to escape to find ourselves.  It’s okay!

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My heart is in anguish within me; the terrors of death have fallen upon me. Fear and trembling come upon me, and horror overwhelms me.  And I say, “Oh, that I had wings like a dove. I would fly away and be at rest; yes, I would wander far away; I would lodge in the wilderness; Selah. I would hurry to find a shelter from the raging wind and tempest” (Psalm 55:6-8).

https://stillnessofthemorning.wordpress.com/tag/psalm-556-8/

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Dirty Dishes & Depression

Window, sill, clean.I have noticed this week and now that it is the weekend, I had a sink of dirty dishes and even a pile of clothes on the end of my bed.  I told myself each time that I would hang the clothing item up when I got home from work, which did not happen.

A week of feeling and fighting depression, perhaps a spiritual attack and probably so, but noticing my house taking a hit and dirty dishes in my sink.  I never do that and it is a telltale sign, I am fighting within. Exhausted. Looking at the dishes this morning and tackling them, I wondered if my husband even noticed and wondering what is wrong with me. I knew that was a far-fetched thought.  Although it made me giggle, just considering the thought.

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Today, the dishes are done and I am managing my messes, as I am getting through the mental chaos but it has been a struggle.  Ever been there?

We all deal with bouts of discouragement now and then and disappointment that can make your knees buckle from sadness, leading to depression. It is a lost and a lonely feeling with darkness looming over our heads. It happens.  Life happens. Give yourself grace and take care of you through it all with proper care and rest.

1DB42EB6-4F25-4AF2-B80B-1CC4BDF7A8D2If you have dirty dishes, piles of clothes, laundry, etc., just start somewhere.  Organize your bedroom, a bathroom closet, etc.  If you do not or have not used something in a year, get rid of it (give away, donate or pitch). Something!  Just start. It will help you feel somewhat productive even if overwhelmed.

I often use this phrase and have it on my bulletin board at work, “How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time.”

Know that depression can hit each of us.  Stop and recognize what is or has happened. Do not stuff your feelings down and ignore.  Take time to name the thoughts and feelings, forgive others and even yourself, as needed.  Journal through the mental chaos, if just a A04571B6-2518-41D9-8BC9-E6C7596EB0ECsentence. Make plans to search out a counselor. With that and when you do and go, please give him or her a chance, as one or two visits won’t do it.  They, too, are getting familiar and comfortable with you as you are them.  Of course, after a month or so, if it is not a good fit, there are others, don’t stop. Perhaps go see your family doctor and know there is nothing wrong with taking an anti-depressant.  Your mental health is just as important as your physical health.  The stigma of mental health needs to stop and be recognized — moreso today, than ever.

826666AE-68D9-4FD2-A2BC-93099F813291Sadly, with all that I wrote and recommended, many in my church family would be appalled, stating I did not have enough faith.  Sad!  I do have faith, enough to know when I need help and that the Lord will lead and direct me to the right counselor(s), which He did.  I have come a long way and still a long way to go. It has not always been easy but I am allowing Him to heal the broken places in my heart and life with a counselor’s help. I’m a better person and a Christian with faith renewed because of my decision to get help years ago.

Make a change today and do something productive.  Sometimes that is just getting up and taking a shower.  I’ve been there. You are not alone. Thankfully, your heart knows how to beat on it’s own, as your lungs allow you to breathe when no energy to do just that.  You’ve got this!

I know even through my week of feeling down and depressed with dirty dishes, the Lord still loves me. He loves you. Trust Him.

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Afraid of Me

Last night, as I sat down in our first class, which will be held one night a week for eight weeks, I was feeling apprehensive. I was feeling out of place, not for the purpose of the class but me wanting to withdraw.  I like to keep my commitments but honestly I did not want to be there, at all.  This was not a required class, but a FB548ADA-6740-4EA9-A983-2BDE3A357396volunteered one to sign up and go to and for all things, weight loss.  No doubt, every lady in this classroom was feeling the same.  Thinking and feeling, just another attempt of a losing battle, my weight.

Since I was not one-hundred percent of my desire to continue past this first night, I did not buy the booklet, which was recommended.  Knowing how I am, I buy such things and that is it, they do not get used and finally thrown out.  I was being persistent in my thoughts of I am not buying this book. Just that rebellious attitude, and not flipping through the booklet like others, I was an odd (wo)man out.

The lady who was leading this group is a very good speaker and she herself has lost the weight and kept it off, keeping the focus on the Lord and depending upon Him. This all makes sense and sounds easy enough but… when we fail and have those sweet treats and the calories build due to whatever we are dealing with or just boredom, then Satan beats us up with shame, failure and our loser mentality.  Plus the fact, we failed God yet again, we did not keep Him first in our eating habits.  Hopelessness comes.  I hate when all that happens.5B172DDB-654E-4AAD-8B7D-C801700FD604

It was when she spoke about the next part, of how the Lord is with us and wants us to be with Him.  To trust Him to pull back the layers of our emotions, which is why we normally eat.  The emotional eating is big with me, as with many.  Let me eat those cookies to ease the sadness.   Maybe the cake and ice cream because I am upset and angry over a situation. Well, you know also that we need to celebrate our co-worker’s third marriage or whatever celebration it is for the day.  No doubt, you know how it goes, especially if you also struggle with weight issues.  The sadness, frustration, anger, etc., can overtake us to where we think it will all be better to eat.  The Lord wants us to come to Him with our emotions, anything and everything, as He is always present.  Acknowledge Him.

Since I have been in counseling the past five years and have dug my heels in and have come a long way, I know the emotional turmoil myself.  Perhaps this is my next level to concentrate further.  Not that I have not included the Lord, because I have, I have had to.

9AF9ED2D-454F-495E-A869-EAE1C914DA5CWhile that spoke to me on a deeper level, of peeling back the layers, it was when she  said that Satan was afraid of you (me).  That hit me big time.  He has big plans for someone in this room and Satan does not want you to feel confident and grow in the Lord.  I took that all personal and that is a good thing.  I do have an excitement within and joy of what the Lord is doing in and with me but times come that this is crazy thinking.  I think not.  Like I mentioned, I have worked hard and pushed through a lot and some hell and I believe there is a new me about to happen and while Satan is afraid of me, I think I am afraid of me, too, in a good way. C07B393A-D629-4517-A2DC-0E726610DD35

I, of course, bought the book. What God has started, He will finish.  I know there is a plan and a purpose for me.

What emotions are in your life that need the layers pulled back?  Are you struggling with your weight, an addiction, etc.  We tend to stuff our emotions down and not acknowledge, keep busy to ignore but what He wants is for you, me, all of us to come to Him and allow Him to be in the midst so we can heal from the pain.

Always know, He also has a plan and a purpose for you.  Trust Him.

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My Heart

D586DFE6-BAED-434F-A9E4-9DB002A7E5F2There are times in life that you may not know what to do or to think of a situation, relationship, etc., at hand before you.  The questions within seem to linger with no answers.  All that you can do is take one day at a time, pay attention and feel the emotions but only on limited time.  Don’t let it steal from your day, if that is even possible.  It is.  Acknowledge, feel and move on.  Repeat, as needed. C3B6FEE8-AEB1-4B43-93AB-54DC4AFAD470

We may not understand exactly what we are facing or have dealt with as there are a lot of emotions that are wrapped in the midst, which is normal.  It is taking it all to God that will help you get through.

Scripture tells us, “Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight” (Hebrews 4:13, NIV). There isn’t a day or a tear that God doesn’t know about. He sees whatever we’re going though … and He knows.

Expressing what we feel to Him, that can be from joy and our praises but also sadness to anger. Yes, even anger toward Him.  One of my biggest faith moments in life, many years ago, was when I screamed out that I was angry with Him.  Seriously, He knows anyway. I felt bad for doing that at the time, but I do not regret, as I felt like my level of faith increased.

1 Peter 5:7, “Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you.” (NLT)

It is not always easy but as you know, time takes care of a lot of issues. As we recognize and come to terms with it all, of what we are dealing with, understand ourselves plus see the Hand of God at work in the midst, joy will return. He knows. He cares.

ED6D9A82-9B8F-4881-881A-632ADAA038A8Our heart may feel the pain and our emotions cause havoc but if we put our trust in Him to help us through, He will do just that.  Trust Him.

https://proverbs31.org/read/devotions/full-post/2016/09/26/in-case-you-were-wondering-god-knows

 

 

Good ‘n Angry

DC098BAD-8FF5-4058-A4EC-602DCCBAF676I admit, I am angry over an situation but more confused, but I know anger is there.  What I do know, is that it is not worth me blasting forth with words that will cause damage.  I do have a heart and I do care.  Once words are released, they cannot be taken back.

A gentle answer quiets anger, but a harsh one stirs it up.
Kind words bring life, but cruel words crush your spirit. Proverbs 15.1,4

Is it wrong to be angry or to feel anger?  No!  It’s normal.

Although the condemnation felt makes you feel bad.  Again, normal. I have been taught it was wrong all my life to have such stern feelings to where I am a bad person, unworthy and so on to have such emotion.  Anger is a normal, natural emotion in each of us  30C76BE4-3B74-4C34-B4E4-2079989559E5

If I said I was not feeling anger, that would be a problem.  I would be in denial.

97AE67D7-CEEF-47F3-A929-1D92DB27D7F2As I even write, I could put words of anger that could hurt another but I do not want to do that.  Where will that get me?  Nowhere but regret doing so.  My heart hurts but I know One that knows me better than anybody.  I feel the emotions, acknowledge and pray that the Lord will help me through it all.  He will.

https://bible.org/seriespage/lesson-8the-truth-about-anger

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