4

Write to tell God's Story

I've enjoyed writing all of my life, but a few years ago I began a journey . I didn't know it at the time, but my journey would take me to the feet of Jesus for healing and understanding before he bore a passion in me to write. This was a little over 3 years ago. Although I have no formal training in writing, I just began to do so. I felt called by God to share my redemption story. I still struggle with words to describe how God redeemed me. But I know my mission is clear. Tell God's story. Tell others about his love, his grace and his mercy. Tell them they can know him too. So I do. It’s not perfect and some days its one hot mess, but I churn out letters that forms words and somehow it makes sense. Somehow….

So today I write, praying God will lead and give me confidence to say the things I think someone needs to hear. A little over a year ago I started a blog and this year I became brave and put that blog in my name. All those years of telling my kids not to reveal too much on the internet and now my name was out there! But God does not call us to be timid or afraid. (There’s another story there!) He calls us to be brave. I know I can’t do this without him. I know that it is because of him I love to write and I know that he will take my jumbled mess, my burnt offering and make it something beautiful.

In courage

So today we begin our new study.  Grace for the Good Girl, letting go of the try hard life.  And we jump right into what our definitions are of a good girl.  Why they may be flawed and how our expectations can cause us to live a life of performance that tangles the web of  lies that we indeed will never measure up.

While reading Emily's story, could you relate to any of it?  I sure could.  I spent my younger years being told how to be a good girl, being admonished when I failed and worst yet, being compared to my twin sister that she was doing it better.  (This last one was tossed back and forth between the two of us depending on who they thought was acting appropriately or not appropriately.)

When I became an adult I went after life with the same determination to be better and do better as a wife, mom and then later as a children's pastor.  In all things, I had in my mind,  that I was suppose to act or be a certain way in order to fit in.  How about you?  Have you felt that way?  Do you still?

As Emily stated, goodness isn't a bad thing.  God loves goodness and he want to shower us with his goodness.  It's when we take our viewpoint of goodness and twist it with lies called rules and expectations that our journey can become guilt ridden and we feel like epic failures.

Emily makes a comment in chapter two that poses a question.  "So now I stand at a fork in the road.  I can try to figure out a way to continue making life work on my own or I can admit defeat and accept Jesus invitation to simply "Come".  This place here, this Facebook page, is a safe place.  More importantly, its a place to be real.  To be real with us, but to be real with your self too.  We will not judge, nor compare, nor surmise.  This is a place to call home. We are friends searching to understand our God better.  So we are all in good company.  But we find ourselves in this fork in the road.  And it's time to let down our mask and know the real Jesus.

Emily again points to Jesus as our example.  Jesus didn't put expectations on himself, he lived expectantly waiting on his Father.  A life totally dependent on the one who would lead ~ and he would ~ follow.

When I came to the realization that performing was not giving me the freedom to live in Christ my world kind of came crashing down around me.  When I looked up from the mess all I wanted was Jesus.  I wanted to know him personally, deeply and intimately.

That's what he wants as well, to know you and to love you .  I'll leave you with this quote from Emily,

"All he wants is simply you, minus your good works, minus your perfect attendance, minus your politeness.  when you really believe that you may discover that all you want is Jesus, simply Jesus......To simply love and be loved by him.

What masks have you worn?

Did you relate to any of the "good girls" Emily spoke about?

1

I'm joining Holley Gerth on her website today. Each Wednesday we follow a writing prompt to encourage each other.  I love encouraging others.  This week our writing prompt was “What are the encouraging words you want to hear when you’re having a hard day?”

I recently went went through a step by step process IMG_1101that took me through some specific events from my childhood.  To some, my childhood was fine. I had two parents who stayed married even through tough times and we always had enough.  But emotionally, there was a lot of dysfunction. That dysfunction led me to believe I had to earn people's love, including God's.  

Fast forward to adulthood and this "people pleaser" was burnt out and felt no love at all.  When I was having a rough day I would turn to my husband and tell him "I love you" in hopes I could hear those words back.  He always did.  He's such a kind-hearted person.   And as much as that would help me feel better there was still an emptiness in me.

But.....God's grace....

Oh, His sweet grace found me some how and showed me love.   His Love.

So friend, if you are having a hard day today, let me encourage you by telling you how much you are loved.  You are loved by a God who created you for the specific purpose of loving you.  And he wants to do that!

 This is how God showed his love among us:  He sent his one and only  Son into the world that we might live through him.  This is love:  not that we loved God, but that he loved us..     John 1:9-10

So if you are having a bad day please know this, you are loved.

Inlink