The last few weeks have been an intense struggle for me. I have tried to maintain positivity and remain strong. I failed miserably. I think I was trying to endure life in my own strength instead of relying on the strength that exceeds human capacity. I was very gently reminded this week repeatedly, "My grace is enough. It is all you need. My strength comes into its own in your weakness." In my weakness. My weakness opens doors for me that exceed understanding. Weakness does not equal failure, even though the human mind tends to think that way. I am guilty of this line of thought more often than not. I feel that I am a strong, independent person. When I can't do something, it is because of a weakness or failure. I forget that in that weakness, Christ will remain my strength. However, I have to accept that strength. Accept weakness, exchange it for strength, and realize his grace is more than enough.
Three massive things happened to me today. A reality check, a breakdown, and the reminder that I am strong, because He is with me. I feel the need to expand on each of these things, so bear with me... :)
This morning, I was awake as the sun started to come up. My blinds were open, and I watched my room slowly change colors from darkness to light. I didn't sleep last night. Situations and events that should have made me happy and at peace left me feeling empty, alone, exhausted, and troubled. I woke up no less than 10 times last night to replay events, conversations, and exciting situations happening in my life right now. None of these things are bad, none of them should have left me feeling empty. But all of them did. As I lay in bed, wide awake, angry at the lack of sleep and the inability to control my thoughts, I was reminded new mercies are extended with every sunrise. Before I continue, I want to say this. I am not a happy jump out of bed morning person. Especially after a night of little sleep. So, this realization that should have provided me with joy did exactly the opposite. I had the words "Start Over" spoken loudly, yet inaudibly, to me yesterday. I heard it, and yet didn't understand. This morning, I was reminded again. As light was coming in, it beckoned to me, start over. New day, new mercies, being made new all over again. Instead of grasping it and running with it, I got angry. I don't know why. I have been feeling frustrated with life, feeling like I am walking out what I am supposed to be doing, and yet getting no answers from God. So, feeling dawn this morning and a fresh start really just made it worse. Honestly, I pretty much lost it. I got angry. I said things I regret. I was just plain mad at God for leaving me in a situation I don't like, for longer than I feel is necessary. I feel punished. I expressed that. I broke down. And, the really horrible part, I felt worse than I had before. I wanted nothing more than to crawl in a pity-party hole and pity myself.
Eventually, I finished getting around, went to church, struggled through nursery, really just wanting to lose it. I just wanted to sit down and battle with someone. I went to church, and sat there, not even wanting to worship. Like seriously not worshipping. Then, first kick in the butt: Pastor Derek said out loud, if we don't praise him the rocks will. I quickly realized how stupid I was acting. Not praising and worshipping wasn't punishing God, because the rocks, plants, and all of creation would gladly praise in my place, if that is the way I wanted it. It was punishing me. I was acting like a child. I was so thankful for a change of perspective. I seriously wish someone would have said that to me walking into church. It is okay. I am forgiven and loved, and it is okay. My lesson was learned. I don't praise because of all the good in my life. I praise because of who He is. It shouldn't matter my state of mind. He is deserving, even on my worst day.
Then, I sit down in my less angry state of mind, and see Cassidy up on the screen. She is reminding me to be strong and brave, because God is with me. Weakness is made strong. Be strong. I can't be strong with Christ's strength if I am strong in my own. I must me made weak to be made strong. Even in all of the month's ups and downs, I can rest assured my weakness isn't weakness at all, but strength. And, I can completely accept that as success and not failure. Not really sure where I am going with all of this but just to say I am good. His grace is more than enough, and all that I need. :)