Its that time again!! A new Bible study (that couldn’t come at a more appropriate time) based on Renee Swope’s book A Confident Heart. Yeah, God’s sense of humor isn’t lost on me with this one, ladies and gentlemen…
When I was reading my options for our Blog Hop topics to the Hubs, his response was… “Wow… those aren’t easy choices!” My thoughts exactly! But if I’m doing this study to face my fears and deal with my doubts head on, there was really only one option for me. I believe (or my trendy iBelieve… get it? huh??).
This study has caused me to confront some of my biggest doubts head on, and that has NOT been easy. (AND we’re only on chapter 2!!) We’ve looked at the story of the Woman at the well (John 4) or Sam, as Renee calls her. Its not a new story to me. But for some reason, listening to Renee’s take on it, I suddenly found myself seeing it with fresh eyes, and through those eyes, I saw myself. I’ve struggled her struggles, felt her loneliness, and avoided her tormenters.
But in going through the study this week, its become pretty clear that the tormenters I’ve avoided, the whispers I’ve tried to ignore…they come from me. From the darkest place’s I’ve not let anyone in. “I’m not good enough”, “I’m sinking”, “I can’t”…
My past is not a pretty one. In fact there are parts of it I wouldn’t wish on my worst enemy, as the saying goes. If people knew me… the me from back then… they would dismiss me in a heart beat. They would say “Who are you, to preach to us?!” 2 Corinthians 5:17 ~ says This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun!
6 years ago, I was running a homeless shelter in Toronto. I was a Single mom, fresh from a very abusive relationship, forced to move back in with my parents, and I burnt out. HARD. I blamed everyone around me, it was their fault I was in the position I was in. I went from being a strong confident woman to the role of a victim almost every night. Everyone was against me. There are times now, when that mindset comes creeping back. Romans 8:31 ~ If God is for us, who can be against us?
There are times I can’t figure out Left from Right (not literally, of course) I don’t know if I’m making the right choices, if I’m doing things in the order God intended. Proverbs 3:5-6 ~ Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to Him, and He will make your paths straight. I’m scared. For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline ~ 2 Timothy 1:7. There are times I feel completely alone in a crowded room. The Lord your God goes with you; He will never leave you nor forsake you ~ Deuteronomy 31:6 Times I can’t bare to look at the 80+ extra pounds I’ve become in the mirror. Ps 45:11 ~ The King is enthralled by your beauty; honor Him, for He is your Lord. Times I feel like I just don’t have the right words, or will know the right thing to do. And God will generously provide all your need. Then you will always have everything you need and plenty left over to share with others ~ 2 Corinthians 9:8.
In my head, in my heart, those doubts screamed. Echoed. Drowning out everything else. But saying them out loud. Typing them here for posterity. There is something freeing in that. Writing this tonight, every time I came up with another doubt, another excuse, I’d look at the list of God’s promises that Renee compiled in chapter 12 of her book and there it was… Gods promises… His assurances… His #perfectlove there, waiting for me to accept it.