This week started off challenging. I was faced with a ministry issue that “pushed on my stuff”. I made a decision to cancel an event because of low registration numbers and it resulted in an all-too-familiar shame storm for me to deal with.
I am a super-sensitive spirit that has been told all my life not to let things bother me. “Don’t let that hurt your feelings, Angie. You shouldn’t feel that way, Angie. That’s not a big deal, Angie.” I’ve heard these things for years. I have longed to have thicker skin or a tougher heart. Anything.
But that’s not who I am. It’s not how God made me. And my super-sensitive spirit is helpful at times. I often sit across the table from someone who is really hurting. Someone who needs a listener. I am able to empathize with deep feelings in another human because I am quite familiar with deep feelings.
So when the new week began and numbers for my event had declined, I made the hard choice to cancel. And then I sat with Jesus and asked Him, why? Why do I feel like I step out in obedience to offer something that connects people to Him and then end up in a heap of insecurity? What does He really hope to accomplish in me through all of this self-doubt and searching?
He doesn’t answer those questions for me. Not specifically, anyway. When I ask (and I often do) I hear only… crickets. But even in the silence on what I’m asking, there is a voice that calls me to talk with Him more about what I am feeling. Come to me and I will give you rest.
I tell Him that I feel like I am not enough. And He reminds me to turn my attention back to Him. For even if the world thinks I am not enough, He declared I am enough when He called me to Himself and filled me with His Spirit.
I tell Him that I don’t belong anywhere. The years of moving around, the rejections I have felt from people I had believed were supportive, and the comparison games I play have caught up with me and I am so self-focused. And He reminds me that this is not my home and I will always belong in His presence. His love is everlasting and His acceptance of me in unchangeable.
I tell Him that I feel like a failure. And He reminds me of the stories of failure in the Bible. The book that I love and teach and cling to. There are so many stories in there of people who were loved and called and used even though they stumbled and fell. They didn’t stay down and neither will I.
He calls to me to remember what I know. What I encourage you to know. That we are beloved, cherished, children of God Almighty. We are warriors for His work. We are redeemed by His blood. We are broken, flawed, prideful, and weak. But He is whole, incorruptible, loving, and strong and He lives in us. He is in our every breath. Our every move. And He will not be shaken.
Give us this day, our daily bread. I am so fortunate to have lived my whole life in a place of comfort where I have known almost no physical wanting. But my daily need is just as essential to my well being. I need to be filled with His confidence and security. Filled with His grace and His love. My daily need is to be steadied as I walk along by the only One who can keep me balanced and upright.