When I was suffering with anxiety and panic attacks, I used to hate people knowing about my illness and I would put up a pretence, acting like I was absolutely fine. I was the one that always had it all together and I was fearful of people discovering the truth of what was really going on inside.
During times of testing my first instinct was always to either hide myself away from people or to run away from any kind of conflict. I had put up so many walls and barriers, in a bid to try and protect myself, that God had to do major work on my heart and completely change my thinking. I wrote more about this in my recent post Loving Vulnerably.
Over time and as my faith in Jesus has grown, I’ve learned that hiding and running away are not the answer and are not even an option for me anymore. I’ve learned that appearing vulnerable is okay, for it is the Lord who lifts me up, protects me and strengthens me. God will and must receive all of the glory for every trial I face and overcome! Not me.
So, here I am, willing to appear vulnerable before you all; my heart open. I am currently going through one of the most difficult seasons in my walk with God. Ever! Everything within me is screaming to run away and hide and my flesh is telling me it’s not worth it and to give up.
God gave me a vision a while ago to start Spirit led worship nights called ‘Create Space’ at my church and God has opened doors for this vision to become a reality and it starts up on 21st of January. Since then it’s been attack after attack. Yesterday was the worst so far when I received a very critical text from a lady from my church. It was not a very nice text at all and I absolutely sobbed my heart out. As in previous years, my first instinct was to throw the towel in and give up all together.
Then God gave me this scripture:
James 1:2-4 Consider it nothing but joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you fall into various trials. Be assured that the testing of your faith through experience produces endurance leading to spiritual maturity, and inner peace. And let endurance have its perfect result and do a thorough work, so that you may be perfect and completely developed in your faith, lacking in nothing.
Spiritual maturity and inner peace are definitely things I want but I just found out the only way I’m going to get either of these, is to go through times of trial, where my faith gets tested. I’m now going to count it all joy as I go through this difficult time of testing and through handling things God’s way, it will enable me to mature in Him.
Brothers and Sisters in Christ, I ask you to please keep ‘Create Space Worship night’ in your prayers. I do believe that we are on the edge of huge spiritual breakthrough in our church and also our community as strongholds are broken and hearts are set free as we exalt the name of Jesus through Spirit led praise and worship. I thank God for you all.
Every blessing to you for the week ahead.
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