Forgiveness

Currently going through Lysa Terkeurst’s book Forgiving What You Can’t Forget with my mentor. I am loving this book for so many reasons and highly recommend the book and the journal if you struggle with forgiveness or are going through the process of forgiveness.

This week I was challenged with really looking inward and finding the pains I still hold onto so deeply.

I was reminded of something that occasionally pops up, the comments made by some of my closest friends when I was going through my devastating skin disease.

Comments like, “You deserve this because you’ve always had such perfect skin.” “You’re paying your dues since you’ve never had acne.” “Good luck finding a husband with that face.” And more.

Now this skin disease I have destroyed my face. My eyes were swollen shut, my face was at times swollen three times the size, and extremely painful lesions that wouldn’t stop filling up with blood completely covered every inch of my face. It was debilitating and I couldn’t leave the house. Most nights were spent wide awake because the pain would not let me sleep and I would be screaming in agony for God to take the pain away.

Since then I’ve been through numerous treatments, surgeries, and injections to try to fix the painful scarring left over. And I still deal with the scars refilling with blood. I’m still in daily pain because of it.

That all being said, I need to forgive those friends for making those comments. I need to process through forgiving them for how painful those comments were to me, and how alone I felt during that time.

That currently looks like uncovering the painful comments that I’ve shoved down deep inside of me, acknowledging them, and asking Jesus to help me heal as I forgive them for what they said.

Will this make the pain I sometimes still feel from those comments go away? No. But we are commanded to forgive those who have wronged us. And forgiveness is apart of the process of healing.

Stop Putting Humans Where God Should Be

Okay so Rachel Hollis….

Let me preface what I am going to say with this: I own 2 of her books. I have not completely read them all the way through, I have cherry picked what I read from them and only read them on a situational basis. I do not listen to her TED Talks and before today I didn’t even know she was on TikTok and I didn’t realize that her book talking about her divorce was riddled with controversy. In fact, for my own reasons, I stopped following her all together once the news of she and Dave’s divorce broke out. This wasn’t necessarily an intentional decision, I just stopped following her after that.

Did I read her books as my Bible? Have I replaced the Bible with “Girl, Wash Your Face?” or “Girl, Stop Apologizing”? Absolutely not.

She is a human being. She is not God.

The disappointment and heartbreak that comes when a celebrity’s true colors are shown happens because we tend to place really cool and motivating humans where God should be in our lives. We see these people doing things we want to do or being the people we wish we could be and we put them in a high place of honor. Not just on our bookshelves but we place them on a pedestal in our lives. They don’t just hold a place of honor in our living rooms or our offices, they hold a place of honor in every aspect of our lives. We follow these people on every social media platform, we have their books, their clothes, their jewelry, we follow their diets and their lifestyles to a T in hopes that we will too someday be them. Is it a bad thing to be motivated by fellow humans? No, it isn’t. But it becomes a bad thing when we obsess over these humans and place them on a pedestal. That’s the problem.

Do humans make mistakes? Absolutely 100% yes. Did Rachel Hollis make a mistake? Oooooh yeah she did. She messed up. I won’t share everything she has done on my blog, I’m not even going to touch on what she has done. But I will say that her apologies need some work and her true colors have been exposed.

Do these recent developments and the exposure of Rachel Hollis mean I am going to burn her books in my backyard and spend a week mourning? No.

It does however mean that I am grateful that I did not allow myself to get swept up in the bandwagon that was the preaching’s of Rachel Hollis. I hope she makes a comeback and realizes the things she has done that are wrong. I hope she finds forgiveness and reconciliation in this situation. I am going to pray for her, and pray for her followers who are hurt right now. And I hope you do the same thing.

We can support one another and be motivated and encouraged by one another without attempting to be God to one another.

God take this pain from me

I really just want to be at the whole clothed with strength and dignity and laughs without fear of the future part of my life now please.

I don’t feel strong enough to survive this pain much longer.

Key word there being “I”, I guess.

God needs to be my strength. I need to let Him in and allow Him to cover me in His strength and comfort. Because the reality of all of this is that I’m weak and fragile and broken.

I tend to do everything I can to attempt to numb my hurt because being out of control and being in pain is killing me. And the more I can numb the pain the better I feel like I can survive my days.

But the attempts to numb the pain are actually emotionally crippling me to the point where I’m not healing, I’m not thriving, and I’m certainly not relying on God or giving control over to Him.

So I sit on the floor in my tears, post panic attack, and I’m begging God with the last few ounces of strength in my body….to be my strength and my comfort. So that I may move on to a period of healing and be able to help others heal and be in relationship with God.

Lord, take this devastation and brokenness and create something beautiful for You.

Chrissy Teigen’s Loss

Let me begin this post by saying I am a Pro-Life advocate and supporter. I have been following Lila Rose since she spoke at my college in 2012. And I appreciate that she has been posting to her pages about Chrissy Teigen’s loss. I don’t know her motives for posting. But I know that every time I see a post regarding their loss I can pray for her and other mama’s who have lost babies.

There is an unhealthy and toxic mindset saturating the comments of Lila’s posts and Chrissy’s posts. Comments that she should not feel pain for this or grieve the loss of her son or she deserves this because in the past she has supported abortion and she is Pro-Choice.

Now, I could totally be wrong, but the Jesus I follow would have mourned with Chrissy. He would not be bringing up her faults or past ignorance. He would be sad for her and with her.

Why aren’t we more like Jesus? Why are we slamming her and condemning her during this time of mourning? Instead of hating her…pray for her. We are not called to like everyone but we are called to love them.

The Battle Within My Brain

I kill myself daily over and over again flipping through every single scenario in my head to figure out if I’m ruining my relationship, my friendships, my job, my family…

There is a never ending investigation against myself by myself to see where I am failing, where I am falling short, where I am being a hindrance and an annoyance instead of a help and a joy.

I thoroughly believe that me being mentally ill is going to be the downfall for everything that is good in my life.

Why should I be happy? I can’t be happy. I’m not happy. What am I currently ruining? How have I negatively affected my partner this week? Did I offend my best friend? Did I blow off my mom? Does everyone currently hate me?

I don’t know why I do this. I don’t know why I exhaust myself and overanalyze every single little interaction I have ever had. It’s exhausting. It’s ridiculous. But I can’t stop doing it.

I found this quote about OCD, It’s like you have two brains – a rational brain and an irrational brain. And they’re constantly fighting.” – Emilie Ford. That’s how it feels. Like my brain is constantly battling itself.

I found this image on http://helpguide.org

I obsess over everything, little things are huge things, I destroy my nails and pick at my teeth and scratch the same spot on my hand over and over and over again and pull at the same spot on my ear while I destroy my brain thinking about every single detail, every single conversation, every single underlying tone, every single facial expression. It’s all glaringly loud and screaming in my head. I don’t know how to stop the cycle.

I’m sure plenty of you can relate to the fear of relapsing and spiraling with your mental health during this time of uncertainty. with society, with our jobs, with finances, with the inability to afford mental health care, with doctors offices closed. It’s definitely scary. It’s a game of survival. The only thing we can do is keep checking in on one another and make sure that when we can afford healthcare again…that we actually make the leap to get help.

Life After Trauma

Life after trauma takes a bit more time…if that makes sense.

Simple decisions that used to be decided in a single thought now seem to take days. And even after you’ve made a decision you rethink that every single moment until you make yourself crazy.

You find yourself distracted by everything and anything and focusing on anything in particular…besides your trauma…just seems utterly impossible.

Mindless distractions take the place of responsibilities. New ticks take the place of healthy habits. Nail biting, picking your cuticles until they bleed, biting your lips, staring off into space, scratching your skin, tapping your foot, rubbing your sleeve…all things you do to self soothe…yet they never seem to work. You obsessively pick at yourself until you feel better.

Life slows down, it stops, it pauses, but at the same time it’s going far too fast and you can’t seem to catch up.

The simplest things take far too much time, far too much brain power, and everything weighs so much. Life is too heavy.

Life is wading in water and sometimes the wading becomes so exhausting that you slowly begin to drown.

It’s easier to close everyone out, even the most important people in your life, than to let them in even for just a second because you know as soon as you do the rawness of your vulnerability and scars may scare them away.

So you sit in your trauma…in your pain…in your loneliness counting down the days until you feel normal again.

Tea Time

How easy is it to settle into the comforts of tea time. I’m not talking about the traditional across the pond time of day to sip tea and nosh on tiny sandwiches…I’m talking about sharing gossip.

We feed off of what others are sharing about others. The gossip may even come in the form of a prayer request…”So and so is really struggling with [fill in the blank] we really need to pray for them!” Is such an easy, and seemingly innocent way to spread gossip.

If the information is not ours to share, we really shouldn’t be sharing it. We shouldn’t be getting enjoyment from sharing other peoples dirt, but we do. Spilling the tea is addicting and it’s toxic.

How do we stop? How do we stop what has become a societal norm? Pray. Be mindful of what you’re listening to and what you are sharing. Intentionally work towards keeping your mouth shut when it should be shut. And encourage those around you to do the same.

Our encouragement to not spill the tea could be as easy as not indulging in what others are gossiping about, or politely removing yourself from the conversation. It doesn’t need to be rude or condemning or start a holier than thou fight.

Be mindful that what you’re sharing is yours to share and will contribute to the conversation in a positive way.

Easier said than done? Absolutely. But with practice we can crush the desire to gossip!

Forever Changed

We are hosting a fun bonfire tonight for our students and all I want to do is crawl into my bed and sob my eyes out. Something happened to me this past year that completely changed me for the worst. What used to bring me joy and excitement now brings me anxiety and dread.

I’ve changed into this depressed angry anxious person and I don’t like it. I miss the joy of looking forward to having a fun night and enjoying the company of those around me. Instead I’m praying I regain the ability to feel my face, hands, and face. Which is a common problem these days when I begin to panic.

I know, the Lord is supposed to be my source of joy. But even the thought of talking to Him these days makes me feel anxious. I know deep down it isn’t true but I feel too broken and hurt to even work on my relationship with God.

-ugh-