October 24, 2017

Being Honest With Myself

This past weekend (October 20-22) I went to a widows retreat. It was a blessed weekend & I came home refreshed in my soul. While there, I got a chance to talk to a counselor & to the speakers - all who are widows themselves. I was blessed by talking with them & challenged at the same time. So, I want to open myself up to you, the reader, in a way that I never have before. I want you to understand more about me so you can better pray for me. I also want this to be a way that I hold myself accountable in the future.

How I see myself on the inside
I have been struggling a lot lately with my self-worth & my worth to God. I have been told that I am royalty to God as a widow & that I am a princess in the house of the King of Heaven. But, that is not how I have seen myself over the last 14 months or so. Instead of thinking that I am God's princess, I have seen myself has God's plumber. I see myself as the person responsible for all of the waste removal in the Kingdom of God. I mean, how much lower can one person get?

I have also been told that God sees me as beautiful. That is totally not how I see myself. I see myself as an ugly troll who doesn't even deserve to have God look at me. I see myself as someone who people avoid at all costs. I see myself as a leper at the gate of the city begging for mercy. I see myself as wretched & beyond help. I see myself as lower than dirt. I see myself as a fungus to society. I see myself as not worthy of God's grace, mercy, love, forgiveness, compassion. I see myself as the person who wasted Christs time when he came to die in my place. I see myself as the person who nailed Christ to the cross & didn't even think twice about it later. I see myself as the person who spits at the base of the cross & laughed at him while he died. I see myself as disgusting, defiled, worthless, forsaken, neglected, hopeless, unloveable. I see myself as the person who God cannot handle looking at no matter what. I see myself as a mistake.

The counselor that I spoke with encouraged me to write these down as a way to track my spiritual growth over the next month. This will give me a way to look back & see how far I have come & how I see myself in one month. As I write them down, I am saddened by how I see myself & how I look down on myself. You see, I haven't always looked at myself this way. This really has been since Daron died & I lost my way. My faith took a backseat & I truly blamed God for Daron's death. I questioned Him constantly about Daron's death. I couldn't see past my grief & see that God was trying to bless me. I still don't see my grief as a gift, but I am working on it. I still don't see how God can use my pain for His glory, but I am working on trusting that He will. I am working on seeing myself as God's princess again.






Back to My First Love
I have walked away from my first love. Actually, I ran away from Him. I have been so busy trying to hold onto what my life was prior to Daron's death, that I stopped moving forward & started looking back all the time. That led to my departure from my first love. That led to taking anger to bed with me instead of my Bible. That led to running away from God & then blaming Him for leaving me. He never left - I did. He has always been beside me, but I felt like He has been forsaking me. I have felt like He abandoned me in my grief. I have been blaming Him for something that I did.

I haven't been reading my Bible. I only "pray" when I want to blame God or ask Him for something. I listen to Christian music as something to have on in the background, not as something to feed my soul. Yes, I have scripture verses pop into my head throughout the day, but I try to push them away. I don't realize that the Holy Spirit is giving them to me for a reason. I gossip. I complain. I'm bitter. I'm rude. I'm angry. I'm hostile toward my son. I blame others before I take a hard look at my own involvement in the issue.

Now is the time for me to get back into the Bible. To get back into digging deep & trying to get as much information about God as I possibly can. Now is the time that I want to fall back in love with Him & truly change how I see myself to how He sees me. I want to learn about how I am not forsaken & I never was. I want to learn more about how God values me as a widow. I want to learn more about how God created me because He loves the thought of me. I want to learn more about how God uses widows for His glory. I want to learn more about how I can be a better mom to Taylor because of how God calls me to that. I want to learn more about how I can truly hand over my heavy burden & He will take it from me. I want to learn more about my calling on this earth.




Tough Decisions Ahead
This weekend has opened my eyes to a few tough decisions that I will need to make in the near future. This is the one part that I cannot be completely honest with you. I have written these decisions down so I can keep myself accountable in that way. I am asking that you pray for me as I make these decisions. God knows what they are. He will lead me to the correct choices. I want to follow His path for my life & these decisions have to be made in order to do that. I trust that God will not lead me to something outside of His plan for my life. I also know that I have never had to make such tough choices before. I need you to lift me up in prayer & trust that God will carry out His amazing plan in my life.





I know that this path won't be easy & the devil will be right there trying to pull me off track. I need to keep my eyes completely fixed on Jesus Christ & hold onto Him every step of the way. I need to go back to being a new Christian. I need to go back to the beginning of my faith & my relationship with God. I need to get my passion for God back & fall deeply in love with Him once again. God never promised that this life would be easy. He only promised that He would be with me every step of the way. I forgot that promise for awhile & I need to hold onto it once again.


October 15, 2017

Struggles

I have been struggling to....
....get out of bed in the morning.
....be a good mom.
....take care of my house.
....take care of myself.
....have a smile on my face when I leave the house.
....make others think I'm doing okay.
....read my Bible every day.
....pray every day.
....continue to trust in God's plan for my life.
....believe that God has a purpose for me.
....go to church on a regular basis.
....open up to trusted friends & family.
....not stay in bed & cry all day.
....remember & trust that Daron is in a better place, out of pain & happy with the Lord.

I have been struggling with all of these things & so much more. The past 14.5 months have changed me in ways I never thought possible. I honestly thought that my faith was deep enough to keep my head above water when Daron passed away. I thought that I was clinging to the cross hard enough. I thought that I would be able to truly rest in God's embrace through the past 14 months. I thought I had faith that would move mountains & I would be able to continue to put one foot in front of the other every day. I thought that I would be able to see God change my life & draw me closer to Him. I thought all of these things but I was wrong.

I am struggling to remind myself daily that God didn't do this to me. God will never harm me. God will never leave me or forsake me. I know all of these things to be true, but I am struggling to remember them. There are days when I feel like God doesn't hear the cries of my heart. There are days when I think that I am being punished for something I did. There are days when I feel like my Bible will burst into flames if I try to read it. There are days when I feel like I am being shunned. There are days when I feel like my life is going to crumble around me & I will fall into a bottomless pit. There are days when I am yelling at God instead of crying out to Him. There are days when I am blaming God for everything that I am going through. There are days when I want nothing to do with Him & I turn my back. There are days when I just can't walk the Christian walk anymore because I can't see outside of my grief bubble.

Then there are days when I can see God's hand at work in my life. Days when I can see a glint of light coming through reminding that life does get better after a loss. Days when I find myself talking to God all days long while I'm at work or doing things around the house. There are days when Scripture comes to my mind without having to search for it. Days when the same praise song is on my mind & in my heart for the entire day. These days are there, but they are few & far between it feels like.

When Daron died, my brain changed....my emotions changed....my life changed. I don't feel like I am in a fog anymore, but I don't feel like I am completely out of that fog either. These past 2 months I have had more emotional breakdowns then I did during the first 12 months. I am truly starting to feel my emotions now & that is where all of the struggles come from. I don't have control over my emotions & I don't know how to get that control back.

That is my biggest struggle......not having control over myself. I know that Daron's death has changed me & I feel like a completely different person these days. I thought I had gained control over my temper, only to lose all control since Daron's death. I am quickly annoyed by specific people, so I tend to avoid them at all cost. I am quick to snap at Taylor & then feel horrible about it soon after. I am quick to jump to over thinking a situation that doesn't turn out the way I think it should. I am quick to blame God rather than blame myself for something not turning out the way I want it to. This list can go on & on & on.

To be 100% honest, my biggest struggle, the one that I can't seem to shake or handle right now, is my faith. That one weighs the heaviest on me. I don't see my need to attend church on a regular basis. I don't see my need to reach out to others & ask them to pray for me. I don't see my need to worship in a corporate setting each week. I don't know exactly why I am struggling so much with this right now. I don't know why I don't feel the driving need to be in church every week & worship in a corporate setting with other believers. I know those needs are there! I know that God has called me to these things! Trust me, I fight with myself every day about it. I know that I'll be called a hypocrite or something along those lines. I can't control what others think about me. I can't control what I think about myself right now! I think I'm a giant failure when it comes to my walk with the Lord, my faith, my time in God's Word & my church attendance.

So there you have it. Those are my struggles. I don't know how else to explain them. I don't know what else to say about them. The struggles are real & I am fighting them the best way that I can these days.

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