Don’t Tell Me What To Do!

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So often through the years, I have found I really get frustrated with my pastor. Yes you read that correctly, but I do. Recently, no different. Apparently, he gets frustrated with the congregation, and me being one. While I understand him and know he is trying to help me and each one of us, I feel he is hollering at me. I don’t know what others think or feel, I don’t dare ask. He probably is frustrated and that is how he wants it to come across but it really makes me cringe and feel less than of a Christian. While that may motivate others, it causes me to stop dead in my tracks, doubt and be cautious.7B690AB6-BE66-429D-AB6D-50D6F4B408DB

As I have pondered this over the years, I still come up with this no-good-for-nothing person, Christian that I claim I am. It makes me sink into a state of unworthiness. I hate this feeling. Questioning if this is condemnation he is placing on us (me) and if so, that is wrong. Or is it condemnation that I am throwing on myself? Does this trigger a part of my childhood I wonder and no doubt it does.

I know he preaches his heart out and is anointed but in this area, I think to myself, here he goes again. Knowing full well that I will have to fight my thoughts of being less than and I will go down the rabbit hole yet again. Whether I sit in the congregation or now as we listen online due to the distancing required.

E4AE16BB-84B6-4678-AB98-086C270E741DI know to pray, I know that the Lord hears my prayers whether in my thoughts, silently or verbally. Had it not been, I would not be here, right now. At times, all I could muster up was, Lord help me. My heart being in such despair and nobody to turn to or trust, He was all that I had. He was all that I needed. Even though I felt alone in the thick of it all, and even felt at times He was nowhere to be found. Although, I know now that my faith grew in those dark, lonely periods, it had to in order to survive.0FD531CE-BD59-4ABF-ABAD-8C1A98FCCA71

I did not have to yell from the rooftops, make a big, elaborate prayer of words that was not me for the Lord to hear my prayers. I am just plain and simple.

We are to praise and worship the Lord and I know that but that also gets heaped into his rants along with prayer. The comment of us sitting like a lump on a log, usually makes my mouth twist and jaws clinch, now in total frustration.  I am not him, will never be him and I do not want to fake my prayer, praise and worship.

As I was cleaning, still pondering this in my mind, realizing that this is a childhood issue that I need to come to terms with. The boldness from his voice at the podium, finger pointing and 7F89A8B9-B371-4116-9A64-EA8D859D3F13to say lump on a log, smacks me. To bring it home to understand and to grasp, I feel he is mad and hollering at me, his finger pointing confirms I am unworthy, to say sitting like a lump on the log is that I am also lazy. End result, convinced I am a good-for-nothing person on the face of the earth or in my family, now church family as a Christian.

77EC128B-21E8-4CAB-BA93-B042464BA8F6In a church service or in our private time, we worship and praise the Lord to usher in His Presence. His Presence is precious and I am fully aware of Him during such times. I do not have to put on a full production of waving my hands, shouting praises and being something I am not. If I do all of that and I have tried but that is my time between me and the Lord. I can stand or sit quietly and feel His presence all over me with tears flowing down my face, dropping from my chin in my worship, praise and prayer. This is my personal time with Him. I don’t need to care what others think or expect of me, although at times I do and accustomed to, which has always held me back.

At times, wanting to speak up and say stop making me feel unworthy and that I will never measure up. I have had that all my life. Is this the rebelliousness within me of my hesitancy, perhaps fear, too. Probably as I dig my heels in and protest as a child saying, you can’t make me and don’t tell me what to do.

Do I know it could be pride on my part? Yes, and intimidation but please don’t add to it and plop on more fear, as I will freeze in my tracks. I have had to wonder if this was conviction, but it is not the same.

4F5CA56F-5565-4E26-9960-1B850F8E1119So as I toss this back and forth the past few weeks due to the COVID19 situation and the seriousness of it all, the finger pointing and preaching returns, of saying do this, do that.  Again, I get it, I really do, but each time, I still get that unworthy feeling. I know, too, that the enemy wants me, us all to feel the unworthiness and to remain stuck. Am I going to act and put on a show just to please the preacher? No. Will I still get frustrated with him when he pushes this down our throat once again? Yes. I do understand he is trying to help us grow in the Lord but it is a big turn off for me. I love my church, my pastor and the anointing. I have considered finding another church at times, which may or may not be any better. I know that the enemy antagonizes me and I realize this could be a ploy to separate me from the church.  So with that, something is about to break, a battle within.  I have been at this church since 1985 so change is hard, too. This is when I need to be rebellious and stubborn, not with the Pastor or even with myself but the enemy wanting to halt my praise, worship and prayer.

I learned while in counseling, it was when I wanted to quit, throw up my hands and many times when leaving and once in my car, saying that I am not doing this anymore. The next week I would return. Thank God I did return because it was in those sessions we broke through some areas that changed me. I saw the pattern as I do now so I will dig my heels in and protest.

Could this all be the shame I have had dumped on me throughout my life? Absolutely, it falls right in line.

Up until the Fall of 2014 and for years later in counseling, I really never knew of shame. Never gave it any thought but as each session occurred, it was obvious that shame had hindered me in life, all of my life, which is sad. Since I now have a word and an understanding, changes and healing can occur as I have gone and go forward.

As I write, I tend to believe all of this frustration with the preacher to make me feel less than, unworthy, etc., is all but shame that I have carried. My issue, not his.

D84FF6C3-1891-41FC-B999-509BE7C3263DKnowing and understanding this, perhaps praying, praise and worship will come easier for me. Still, I know the Lord meets us where we are and He is the one to direct us and help us in areas to get us to where we need to be. To be a willing vessel, He will do just that. I do not need to put on an air to appease the preacher or anyone around me. The Lord is all that matters and my relationship with Him. To acknowledge how this has affected me, I do not need to accept the feelings of unworthiness. I am worthy!

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https://jerralea.blogspot.com/2019/09/lumps-on-log.html

9 Ways to Get Over the Fear of Praying Out Loud

https://www.reviveourhearts.com/articles/overcoming-obstacle-praying-out-loud/

https://psychcentral.com/lib/what-is-toxic-shame/

https://aibi.ph/harvest/Shattering%20Shame/ShatteringShame.htm

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Different than Before

7962A244-6C49-457D-9431-6D75CB858236While each of our normal routines are disrupted with work schedules, appointments canceled one by one, nowhere to go, so on and so forth, as you know. Of course, I’d like to go out and eat but not by a drive-thru. This will be missed by many, especially as the weekends roll around.

At one point this week, I felt as though I was being punished. For instance, when children disobey and the parent takes away a toy, cell phone, privilege to drive the car. Each day something else was removed from my daily/weekly routine, and yours also probably.9726947E-D6BC-4CEE-9090-D12D395A350EMy work flow is off kilter although I am safe for when we return, the restaurants, businesses, hair and nail salons, dentist, chiropractor, counseling, even church services. Everything is off. It does not feel real but it is. The next few weeks or month(s), we will all have a new normal, although it is not normal.F1D6F7F4-E625-4C1D-842C-EAAEFD891006

The other night, as I listened to my Pastor do a live, online video to share God’s Word, as he did last night, too. Powerful! To not congregate in church and worship, puts a whole new thought process regarding this crisis, worldwide. We can always pray, worship, read God’s Word at home or anywhere and should be doing already.

As he spoke, in his messages, he said now is the time for 49D91A74-4454-4E17-A791-A706A960B4E2the head of the household to stand up in the home and pray. Pray for a hedge of protection around our families, stop being a coward and be the covering over the home, wife, children. In many homes, the head of the home, normally would be the husband/father. Nowadays, he has either taken a backseat or may not even be In the picture. If that is the case, YOU are responsible to pray putting all intimidation away to speak and pray the Word of God. Just go through your home praying and speaking the Word of God, put post-it notes up with scripture, always putting in faith, pushing out fear.

665DB3FF-279B-4934-AC83-3842A3A6FEBAI am one of those in church or in a group that always remained quiet, a bystander letting others do the praying, as they were or are the more spiritual ones. Although I know, He has equipped me just as much as them. I know He has heard my own, private prayers, whether in my thoughts or verbally, through the years.

In church, I have also been hesitant to raise my hands in worship and step out of my comfort zone. I have at times in years past but through many years and trials, I allowed the enemy to remind me of just how bad of a person I am, not worthy, etc., which is exactly where the enemy wanted me, to be invisible. 32259977-AD41-4FA7-9A50-5E8DC86A98C3

While I am doing much better, knowing my worth, trusting the Lord and knowing He has a plan and a purpose for me, as He does for you. There is no amount of lies that we believe about ourselves that will keep God’s plan away from what He has in store for us. We are to lift Him up in our praise, worship and not to forget our daily walk and talk.

My Pastor’s message hit home. There is prayer within each one of us and we are to pray! With everything happening right now within our own four walls but worldwide, prayer will be what gets us through. After this crisis, no doubt many will have more faith or sadly, more anger. We each have a choice.

F7D7F8F2-2AF7-438C-9B4F-E902485EF954The next time we walk through the church doors, we will not be the same as the last time we walked out. Our prayers will be different. Our worship will be different. Our lives will be different.

Many newcomers will be walking 3D5B6131-A12F-489F-A281-C494EBE432F6through the church doors. This is a time that many will call upon the Lord in desperation and hopelessness, we all will possibly, but knowing we ALL must call upon the Lord, be saved and know deep in our heart that He loves us, He holds our hand, He will never leave or forsake you.

It is time to pray! People need hope, more today than ever. Encourage one another.

We have many days ahead of us through this crisis and to cry out to God, He will be there. Many uncertainties are before us but one thing for certain, we can depend upon God.  Trust Him!

Stay Well45298D66-907E-453C-B73D-62F38A90DF40

15 Comforting Bible Verses for Troubled Times

1 Peter 5:7 Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.

Psalm 56:3 When I am afraid, I put my trust in you.

Matthew 6:25-27 “Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on.

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How to Pray For Your Family: Prayer Points for Family