Dear reader, today is the second to last day of Write 31 Days, 31 Days to Believe. If you’ve stuck with me this far, can I just give you a big, hearty thank you? I mean it. You bless me with your presence, your stories, your words of encouragement and how you let me know when a particular post resonates.
Honestly, this series turned out quite differently than I envisioned it to be. I didn’t intend for threads to be woven through which deal with shame, unworthiness, and emotional health. But there it is. That’s what came out.
Only recently have I become aware at how deeply shame entered my life and the strangle-hold it gripped me with. Did you know? Fear and control are often tied to shame. So, yeah, there’s been a lot of that too.
While wrestling through the cords of control, the times when I’d rather have fear than faith and the realization of who I really am so I could stop believing the biggest lie ever, I’ve seen God’s smiling face and enduring love. Have you been there too? Are you there now?
This whole writing challenge gave me the chance to show up faithfully day after day and find God showing up too, with His words and a message I hadn’t really thought through. Those words He gave often ministered to my own healing heart. It’s my sincere prayer that they minister to yours as well.
I believe with you, dear friend. There is hope beyond today and faith is fueled by a God greater than we know.
I believe with you that shame, fear and control are not what He desires and that He provides the healing and the freeing.
God’s purpose for this little ‘ole writing space is becoming clearer. Pursuing Hope & Inspiring Faith is all about sharing what God has done, what He continues to do and choosing to look ahead to what He’s promised will be. A future home where future glories await.
My heart for each of us is to pursue emotional health & freedom while experiencing God’s grace, mercy and great faithfulness. Through the words on this blog and in my #RiseUpWriters writing, I long for us to know Him more, find rest in being known by Him & equipped and encouraged to make Him and His truths known.
Today, rather than choose a topic from the many I’d still love to tackle, I thought I’d just write to you. As if we’re meeting face to face. Because I’d love to do that too. It would make me happy to look you in the eyes and listen to your heart as your share your stories.
When I meet with others, and especially those who aren’t just like me, my vision for God becomes enlarged. His ways and His beauty become more visible with each of you and the way you’ve experienced life. With how you’ve either lived in doubt and fear or with great trust and faith. Often, I find them entangled together as we wrestle through life, all imperfect and broken.
If I may be really honest here, as long as we’re sitting together, these last three years have been exceptionally hard. Even, and especially, this whole month while writing about believing. I’m not sure I would say these have been the hardest seasons though. Because from my high school years through the time I was pregnant with my second son, those were pretty dang hard years too. That’s like a decade or more.
I know I’m not alone in this. I see your hard stories appear in snippets or in larger chunks. Sometimes I find myself wrinkling my eyebrows at those who never seem to struggle with one darn thing in their life. At times I find it enchanting and inspiring. At other times it’s downright alarming and irritating.
Could it be, some of us live in a facade and don’t even know it? While others have tasted the fruit of real freedom?
There’s a difference & I think we can smell it.
At times I’ve smelled wrongly though. In His grace He’s allowed me the friendships and acquaintances of those with varying ideas of theology, different ways of worship and unique views of God and the world around them.
Years ago, I would have shied away. Today, He draws me into a place of deeper knowing, through the imperfect lenses of others along with my own blurred and foggy vision.
For now, we all see in part. Through the gift of you, your part added to my part, I get to see Him more every day.
For today, let’s seek rest in the fact that He fully knows us. May we look forward to the day when we will fully know Him.
Let’s believe better together.
Want to join others in this messy faith journey? Check out the Messy Faith Facebook Group. It’s been quiet for some time, but maybe we can liven things up again?
Thank you for joining me in #31DaystoBelieve as we pursue what we believe and how it impacts our lives.
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May we learn to #livewell.
with love, Jolene