“Command and teach these things. Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity.”
1 Timothy 4:11-12 NIV
A lie this world loves to breath into our thoughts is “you are not enough.” You are not smart enough, old enough, experienced enough. The authority of man is not given, therefore we keep going, keep believing, that lie. That we aren’t cable of greatness.
The first time I decided to write publicly, I was terrified. I told two friends and asked them to read it, to tell me how bad it was. Who did I think I was? What authority did I have to preach the gospel? I have no seminary degree, I have never worked in a church and full disclosure, I didn’t know 80% of the Bible stories. I grew up Catholic, attended CCD every Wednesday, got confirmed and left the church. I always believed in God but did not have a personal relationship with him. Until March 7, 2014. The worst day of my life. And guess who showed up to comfort me, love me and show me the path out of my pain…God. While I didn’t recognize it immediately, it wasn’t long before I was reading scripture just to get my thoughts off of the grief. Then I went to a bible study. Then another. And 3 years, 20,000+ words on my lab top later, I realized God had given me a gift. A gift to share my pain, a gift to spread the good news, a gift to write.
While I’m not a published author or being offered writing gigs…I know with certainty, this is what God has called me to do. He sends me affirmation the minute I start doubting. The minute I start noticing what I lack. He speaks over my heart. That this is not for them, this is for Him. This is an act of obedience. I can only imagine if I had never taken that 1st step. Made that 1st post. Started my own blog. I would have never received that letter from a grieving mom that my words brought her comfort. I would have never been offered the opportunity to lead a book study on finding hope in the grief after a loss. I would have never been asked to speak, share and love on hundreds of women, who too face seasons of immense sadness.
See THIS is how God works. THIS is how God uses our pain. When He says He uses it all for good, it’s not that He preemptively causes it. That’s not the God we have. We have a God that sent His only son, to die, so that we could join Him for eternity in heaven. So He uses the brokenness of this world, our body, our circumstances and He comforts others. What you are currently walking through is not just happening to you. And God sees this. He sees another sister, sitting in the same pain, alone. Praying to Him for help. Any you, my friend, are that help. That is why we must shut out that noise that says no one cares. That says you aren’t good enough. Instead say screw you satan and proceed with the fire burning in your soul to step out of what’s comfortable and step in to what’s possible.
This is where the magic happens.
When we start using our gifts for recognition, we stop serving God. When we start fighting the algorithms of Instagram, we lose focus on why we started.
If you struggle today with a thought, a dream, an idea that you want to pursue but your fear is telling you…”nobody cares”, “you’ll never succeed.” Stop. That is a lie. That is what Satan wants you to believe because he knows the power that can come from your passion.
Your story is important.
Your gifts are needed.
Your life has a purpose.
Find your words. Your scripture. Your truth. Mediate on that. Let’s stop living for the approval of man and begin living the life we were created for.