Look at you. You can hardly get one measly sentence onto this page without tears creeping into the corners of your eyes. That should come as no surprise to you. You know that you’re a “delicate flower”, they’ve told you your whole life how sensitive you are, but it’s not a bad thing to have a tender heart, even if you hate to admit that. Your tenderness isn’t a weakness, even when it’s difficult to convince you otherwise. The world is full of hard hearted people. The bitterness and ugliness of life has crept in and taken over so many souls, don’t let that happen to you too. Your sensitive heart is lovely, and I hope someday you will learn to embrace that part of yourself. It’s one of your very best qualities. Your tenderness has given you empathy and compassion that is SO rare. Don’t let that go sister, the world needs more people like you.
You know better than anyone else that you are one of your own worst critics, but you’re not doing yourself any favors by being so hard on yourself all the time. I know these insecurities come from a place of old pain, but why is the voice of criticism, the one you choose to carry through your life?
This season of life is a difficult one, and it comes shortly behind a different season with different trials you feel like you just finally worked through. That’s how life works though. If you’re not smack dab in the middle of difficult times, you’re either just overcoming a trial, or about to face something new. Don’t be discouraged by that sweet girl. You have been refined by fire many times now, and that fire has changed you, to make you more like who He want’s you to be. I know it’s hard to see that right now, I know you wouldn’t pick the fires, and sometimes you wonder why they keep choosing you, but you also know that God hasn’t wasted not one moment of difficulty when He trusted you to walk through those fires, and again through these ones. You are being refined day by day even when it doesn’t feel like it, and on the other side of this season you will have gained something you will be grateful for. You may not be grateful for it right away, but someday you’ll look back and be grateful for even the difficult things.
I know that right now you feel like you’re failing at everything. Your family, your finances, your friendships, your job, your ministries, your devotions, all of it…but there are going to be seasons where you have it all together, and there will be seasons where you will need the Lord to carry you through. It’s not because you’re broken. It’s not because you’re a failure. It’s not because you’re flaky, or damaged, or too sensitive, or worthless. It’s because sometimes life is hard and you can’t do it all on your own. Stop listening to that voice that says you’re not good enough. That voice of insecurity has followed you your entire life and it has gotten you nowhere. Instead, dig deep and listen to the voice of truth that speaks of who you REALLY are, even if your best efforts today look different than other days gone by.
You’re not failing your family. Through your seasons of weakness, they are learning what it’s like to serve and love you like Jesus would want them to. It’s not going to kill them to help fold laundry or dish up cereal for dinner from time to time. You have spent many years without sleeping a full night through, because that’s what it takes sometimes to meet the needs of your family. This time let them love you and care for you in return. When you’re better, when this season is over, you can be the one dishing up the cereal for dinner again, and you’ll be everyone’s hero when you dash a little extra sugar on top.
You’re not failing your friendships. Some days you may not be physically present, but you’re one of the first people they reach out to when they need an encouraging word, or a passionate prayer on their behalf. The ones that truly know your compassion know that you are doing your best to be there for them through all that you’re going through, and the ones that don’t understand will just have to take the back seat for now. You’re already beating yourself up over things you have no control over, there’s no sense in going there with this too. Let it go sister, you really are a good friend, and those that REALLY love you don’t need that reminder. They understand, and those friends are the ones walking beside you through this tough thing. When it’s their turn to walk through a trial, they’ll look beside themselves and find you, they always do.
You’re not failing at your ministries. Yes there are seasons where you are absent more than you are present, but ministry reaches far beyond the walls of the church building, or the links on the world wide web. When you receive a text in the middle of the night that says “if you’re still up, would you pray for me…?” You have stopped to make sure that person doesn’t go to bed that night, carrying that heavy burden alone. You have been there over and over again for different people going through different things, and pointing them back to Jesus IS ministry. Yes I know that this isn’t the specific ministry you signed up for, yes I know that you want to be present and involved in everything you’ve committed to, but right now, God is using you differently. Let Him. Trust Him. And know that you are doing the best you can where you are right now. Keep looking for opportunities to be salt in light, even if its by nothing more than a text and a prayer. You may never know the difference you’ve truly made for the Lord until you get to Heaven, but that’s ok. That’s what keeps you humble. Right now, serving the Lord looks different, it always does when you’re going through a trail, but even in the midst of being refined by fire, you’ve found ways to still speak life into the soul of other people. That’s ministry. Ministry is loving like Jesus.
Lastly my love, please remember that you are enough. The you right now that’s got bed head and a house full of mess, she is enough. The you that is sick and tired, hurting and weary, burnt out and stretched thin, she is enough. The you that looks nothing like the woman he married, the you that can’t be well enough to show up every day, the you that is feeding the kids cereal again, she is enough. Now if you can just convince yourself of that, everything will be ok.
” Therefore we do not lose heart. Even though our outward man is perishing, yet the inward man is being renewed day by day. For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory.” 2 Corinthians 4:16-17
In His Love,