Do you ever feel like you aren’t allowed to do something?
Let me put a different spin on that. Do you ever feel like you aren’t allowed to do something because you’re a Christian? You aren’t allowed to feel a certain way or think a certain way or act on certain impulses, because you are a Christian, and Christians are perfect. Right?
No. We are most definitely not perfect; far from it. It’s high time we started accepting it. There are times in life when bad things happen, and we feel depressed; we feel angry; we feel, period. Did you know that’s okay? Has anyone ever told you that IT. IS. OKAY. Christians become depressed. Christians get angry. Christians act on impulse and binge drink. Christians think about that sex scene that they didn’t turn off of the television when it came on. (Don’t have a heart attack. I’m just being real.) My point is: we do feel and think and act in sin. We aren’t Christians because we are perfect; we are Christians because we know we are not! We know we sin. We know we need help. We know we are going to screw things up. Please believe me when I say, I get it. I get feeling like you have to hide your anxiety, because God says don’t be anxious in like 30 places in the Bible. I get hurting so bad that you cry until you can’t breathe and feel like the world is crashing in on top of you. …………I understand feeling like God isn’t listening to you anymore………
I think that God says “don’t be anxious” and “do not worry” so many times in the Bible because He knows we are going to worry. He reminds us not to, because He knows we are sinners, and worrying is almost second nature to us. There are times you will feel like God isn’t listening to you. I have. It is the most alone I have been in my entire life that I can remember. Was He listening? Well, His Word says He will never leave me, so yes, He was listening. I just didn’t feel it. Sometimes in order to hear God, we have to quiet everything else down in our lives: our fear, our worry, our guilt, our blame, our busyness, our shame. We have to come to a place of complete vulnerability where we get to say, “Okay God, I know you’re there. I don’t feel you, and I can’t hear you. But I trust you.” It is the hardest thing you will ever experience. But in the book of James it tells us, that trials produce perseverance. Our perseverance will enable us to endure the hardships that happen along the way, because we have faith. Please understand me though. You don’t have to have this extra large size faith that everyone can see and hear about. The Bible says you need only have faith as big as a mustard seed (which is truly tiny) in order to move a mountain! Our problems, my problems, feel like mountains. Sometimes, they really are mountain size. God will use it for His glory though. Just hold on a little longer.
I once heard an anonymous quote that says, “You have to get through the ‘test’ in order to have a ‘testimony’.” Truer words have not been spoken. My testimony will shine as a light for others to see their way to Jesus. I can see that now, and I can write that with ease, because I’m on this side of my trials. A few months ago? Well, you can look back and see the darkness I was in. God’s light was still there, but my faith was shaking and I needed someone to hold me up. I needed God. I didn’t know that then, because I felt like He wasn’t listening to me. Regardless, I kept talking [to Him], although I didn’t realize it. I wanted help then and there and how I wanted it. I wanted an immediate cure-all. God wanted it differently. Guess who won? 🙂 I now have a testimony to share with others. His timing is always right, and He is always on time. Don’t give up hope.