I came home from church a few weeks ago, plopped down on my bed, and grabbed my journal. In bold letters, I wrote across the top of the page -
I AM DONE.
DONE with self-focus.
DONE with insecurity.
DONE with coming home disappointed and let down.....why? Because the world didn't give their all to make me happy today.
It's the truth - the brutal truth. But I'm selfish. I'm self-focused. And because I'm self-focused, I'm insecure. The 2 always go hand in hand. Always.
It's something I've struggled with ever since I can remember. For years and years, insecurity has been a constant shadow. I've been unhappy with myself, unsure of myself, and painfully aware of myself. I hate it! I despise it. And I'm tired of it.
And so I came home from church, disappointed and disgruntled, and I drew a line in the sand.
I AM DONE WITH SELF-FOCUS. I refuse to live this way any longer.
But the question hung over me like a heavy rain cloud.......
How? How to change? How to live out a new lifestyle when I've known only one way?
I've always heard the nice pat answer.....
"Just think about other people. Get your focus on them. Always be thinking about how you can make them happy."
Great advice. And I tried. I really did. I mustered up all the strength I had (not much, by the way) and gave this others'-focus thing my best shot.
Let's just say it didn't amount to much.
I'm not strong enough yet to keep my focus on other people. I'm not strong enough yet to go into a room of people and think only of them and how to bless them. I wish I was. I believe I will be one day. But I'm not there yet.
So what was I to do?? Discouraged, I bowed my head and turned my heart to the Lord.
And in my hunger for an answer, I believe the Lord spoke.
No, I may not be strong enough yet to live my life with a constant others'-focus.
But I can cling to the Lord. Like a drowning man, groping towards the raft that will hold him afloat. Holding on with every last bit of strength. I can do that.
I can run to Him.....pursue Him......crawl to Him - whatever the day may bring.
I can fix my eyes on Him, as the runner fixes his eyes on the finish line.
And on the days that I am weak, and my will power is trembling, I can call on Him - cry out to Him - knowing that I will hear an answer.
And here the beautiful realization dawned on me. As I let Him fill me, He can love others through me. He can give to others through me. It has nothing to do with me......but everything to do with Him. It's called abiding (John 15). It's called allowing His life to flow through me. It's forsaking my own strength, and falling before Him - empty and ready to be filled.
It's the secret to the victorious Christian life.
It's been a huge lesson. A life-change.
The Lord's answers are my victory.
How thankful I am that we serve a Lord Who answers our cries. He answers the obvious questions. The calls of the sincere. The petitions of the weak. He stoops to hear. But He doesn't stop there. He answers.
It's a precious truth. I serve a Lord Who answers.