Ever have one of those days you’re just feeling particularly insecure about yourself, your life, and the decisions you have been making? Well, I just had one of those recently, and it was tough. I stayed home to rest because I was run down, which was good for my body, but perhaps not my mind. I got in my head and started questioning things. Am I really doing what God wants me to be doing? Am I doing enough to better myself, grow, and heal? Am I making any headway? Will I ever accomplish what I desire? The questions go on. And on. And they boil down to a matter of security.
I needed to be reminded of simple truths – I am loved. I have worth and value apart from what I do. I have set my heart to follow God and am doing the best I can in what I feel called to do right now. I am secure in Christ because what HE did for ME. Not the other way around. Wow. If we could let that truth settle in ours hearts, how much more confident and secure could we be?
Lord, please remind us of the fundamental truths of our identity in You so that we can walk in confident freedom in You to do all You are asking of us in this season. And thank You that You will do more than we can ask or imagine or believe. In Jesus Name. Amen.
God has really been working on my heart recently about healing – that healing is possible, at the deepest level, and in every way. My earthly mind tells me a different story, but I choose to trust Him and to believe in the possibilities again. One day at a time. Slowing down, trusting in, and leaning into Him. When my heart hurts, feels lonely, and can’t understand what the heck is going on in my life, I will turn to Him and LET HIM in. This is how deep healing happens. And I WANT the deep healing. Yes, it will hurt. But it totally is worth the process and the intimacy that will inevitably grow with my Heavenly Father who will turn the bitter into sweet. So thankful He turns the bitter into sweet!
To the one struggling deeply to get over a hurt or struggling with mental illness, I understand. Healing may not feel possible. Honestly, that is how I feel right now with my mental illness. I have experienced some healing, but I sense God challenging me that He has more healing for me. I don’t know what exactly that will look like, but my heart is open. And, I hope this post may challenge you a bit to open your heart, even if it’s just a tiny bit, to the possibilities of healing. Healing for your heart. Healing for your body. Healing from the pain.
Lord, grant us the ability to lean into You and LET YOU IN in the hardest moments. It’s in that place, we will encounter your sweet, deep, healing love. We want to be about You and Your Kingdom. Bring us healing, for Your will and Your glory. Amen.
The Lord is my pacemaker – I shall not rush.
He makes me stop and rest for quiet intervals:
He provides me with images of stillness,
Which restore my serenity.
He leads me in ways of efficiency
Through calmness of mind, and His guidance is peace.
Even though I have a great many things
To accomplish each day, I will not fret –
for His Presence is here:
His timelessness, His importance will keep me in balance.
He prepares refreshment and renewal
In the midst of my activity,
By anointing my mind with his oils of tranquility.
My cup of joyous energy overflows.
Surely harmony and effectiveness
Shall be the fruits of my hours;
For I shall walk in His house forever.
God gave me the theme of single mindedness this year – focusing on Him and keeping Him first. He wants me to simplify, slow down, and stay there. I have found some progress in this area, but the “staying there” part is hard! Distractions keep pulling me away – or I start searching in vain for the next “best thing” that will make my life better or fix it somehow. I must chose to remember that I already have enough. I have Jesus living on the inside of me. The closer I stay to Him and that truth, the closer I will stay to what He is calling me to do: Simplify, slow down, and stay there.
What is God calling you to do right now? Slow down to listen, obey, and then make the choice to stay in it…as long as it takes.
I have the above saying on an index card on my bathroom mirror. When I get thrown some negative experience or I am struggling with depression, I sometimes feel hopelessness creep in. When I start to feel hopeless, I start to believe that my situation is, in fact, hopeless. We must remember in our life and recovery that feelings are not facts.
All individuals, whether or not they have a mental health diagnosis, will struggle with cognitive distortions at some point. Cognitive distortions are negative, distorted ways we tend to think about the world and what is going on in our life. Our thoughts are not in line with the reality about what is going on (or what God says about us, in fact). Those suffering from mental illnesses tend face cognitive distortions more often. Cognitive behavioral therapy can help aid in re-framing these negative ways of thinking. Here is an example of re-framing a cognitive distortion.
Emotional reasoning is a common cognitive distortion that says “if it feels true, then it must be true.” So, “if I feel hopeless, then my situation must feel hopeless.” For me, hopelessness is a place that I can still sometimes default to after a negative experience or during a depressive episode. Simply having the statement on my bathroom mirror that there IS hope even if I feel hopeless reminds me in those difficult moments that there is, and always will be, hope. That hope is anchored deeply and securely in Jesus Christ. Nothing is too difficult to handle. Nothing that has happened to us cannot be redeemed and used for God’s good.
“We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure.” Hebrews 6:19
May you experience God’s hope today no matter what you are facing.