I don’t know about you, but I have had many times throughout my 6-7 years of being independent from my parents that I have not felt okay. Times where when someone asked me how I was doing, my respond would be I am okay. But really, I wanted to scream from the bottom of my heart that I am confused, doubtful and totally lost.
Recently for a good week, I cried myself to sleep. It’s not that I was unhappy or that my life sucks. But because I didn’t know what was going on in my mind and in my heart. I know many times the Lord would gently poke me and asks me to talk to him, to share my thoughts and what I was thinking. But my respond was to hide because I was ashamed that I was not okay and perfect in the presence of the LORD.
Somewhere in my brain I didn’t want to admit to myself that I wasn’t okay. I didn’t want to admit that I am a Christian who is not okay. Why? Because we live in a Christian world where we must have it all together. And if we don’t have it together then we must of done something that made The Lord mad and he is punishing us. And we remember, the words that most people say when things go wrong, “well you must not have enough faith.” But in reality that is not true. The Lord delights in our brokenness, in our mess. Because, in the midst of our mess we are vulnerable and are willing to listen and to be transformed.
I remember in the beginning of my college career, I pretended that I was good. That I had everything together, was perfect and didn’t not need any help from the Lord at all. But by the second semester the Lord knocked me down a few steps and reminded me that even though I had wisdom and knowledge I still knew nothing. Instead I needed to abide in him so that I can live. Throughout that semester I was depressed, I didn’t have friends and I was not aware of what the Lord was doing in my life. Soon enough I realized that I did not need to face the Lord completely put together. But instead, I just needed to go to him. I need to lay on his feet and let him cuddle me, comfort me and tell me that he is doing something great and I just need to trust him.
One of my favorite verses when I am confused and just need a little encouragement is Psalm 34:18 which says “ The Lord is near the brokenhearted; he saves those crushed in spirit.”
whattt!! How insane and beautiful is it that the Lord literally says he is near the brokenhearted and that he is ready and willing to rescue those who are crushed inspirit. The creator and savior of the universe, is ready to enter into your mess with you. He doesn’t want to sit on the sidelines. But he wants to be your partner. This verse reminds me that it’s okay to be a daughter or a son of the Lord and still not be okay. He still delights in me when I am lost and confused. He still wants me. I am still a sweet aroma to him.
So if you are experienced shame in not being okay as a Christian, here are a few steps to help you realize that you are not defined by what you do but by being and resting in the Lord.
- First know that shame and guilt is from the Devil. When you are not feeling okay and your identity in Christ is being attacked know that that is the enemy coming for you. He knows what you can do and he is going straight into your foundation and that is you identity and purpose.
- Have a few scriptures ready, have that accountability partner ready who you can talk to about what is going on in your life and who can point you to the feet of Jesus!!
- Community is important. Have a group of gals or guys who can pray for you; who can fight for you because they want to see you thrive.
- Lastly, be still. Ask the father what he has for you. 100% of the time he wants you to talk to him. He wants to speak life, truth and love into your heart. So take time to sit at his feet and hear from him
Some of my favorite verses from the New Testament is when Jesus wakes up early in the morning and takes time away from everyone with his disciples to have time of solitary and enjoy being in the presence of the Father. Most of the times, alone time in the father’s presence is all you need for you to know exactly what he wants from him. So learn to take time to seek him and know that he is not ashamed of you. But instead he is happy that you are there with him. The Lord loves you beloved. Don’t forget where your identity comes from!
You are going to be okay. -Winnie