It’s not easy being vulnerable, but it’s time…

Are you in bondage like I’ve been? Let’s connect!

I am a mess. Seriously, a big mess! I feel like God is taking me on quite a journey to humble me and show me that I am nothing without Him. And, I am finally realizing this truth….I am nothing without Him, but everything with Him.

All my life I have struggled with being on time, procrastination, perfectionism, people pleasing, keeping my home clean and organized, sticking to a schedule, etc.

It took some hard knocks for God to get my attention and show me that I was trying to work my way into His favor, and in the process I was putting up many idols that were blocking true intimacy with Him. I was a believer, yes. I read my Bible often and did Bible Studies. I did all the “right” things, but I came to realize that oftentimes I was doing them to check off a box, or to make myself look right in my own eyes and in other’s eyes. I didn’t realize that my heart was not right. You see, you can learn, yet not understand….and that is where I was at. It’s also possible to learn, but not change, not take the action needed to make the changes God wants to make in your life. I would read the Scriptures, and pray, but there were passages that I just didn’t “get”. A couple of those were Matthew 15:11-32 (with a focus on vs. 25-32), and Luke 10:38-42. The first passage is about the Prodigal Son. I related so much with the older son and didn’t “get” why the one that was so wrong got such a great reward, when the older son had never done anything rebellious and didn’t get any accolades. (I was the compliant child and had carried that into my adulthood, but felt like all my hard work never paid off, it rarely felt like anyone even noticed). The second passage is about Mary and Martha, and Jesus rebuked Martha for trying to work hard and serve, when Mary was just sitting at the feet of Jesus. I didn’t “get” that. (Again, I would do things to try to prove myself, but instead would be put down or things would go unrecognized). But, like I said, the Lord has taken me on a journey and revealed so many things to me, and I am so grateful!

I would say the journey of revelation started about 6 years ago. I used to be very political and share my beliefs on social media. I believed that there really was only one way to vote, and that was Biblically, and if you were a Christian, that’s the way you should vote. I upset some church members on a few occasions when I would post my views (which I felt were the right views, the Biblical views). Some of them blocked me and never said anything. But, a few of them called me a bigot, and other harsh names. I just took it as persecution for standing up for my faith. However, one time a lady messaged me and really let me have it. She told me that she would never allow her son into my Sunday School class with my radical beliefs. That hurt me to my core. It upset me so bad that I really had to pray and ask God to help me to forgive her, and show me where I might be wrong (because remember, I didn’t believe I was wrong). God showed me through that, as well as many other trials I went through, that I was a prideful person. Pride is what caused Satan’s fall! I certainly did not want to have that as a character trait! I saw others as “worse” than me. I didn’t see people through Jesus’ eyes. He created us all and loves us all the same. He loved me before I even knew Him, and Romans 5:8 tells us that “But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” He died for everyone while we were still sinning, while we were the worst of the worst. He loved us that much! I knew then that I needed to learn to see people the way Jesus saw people. I also learned that Jesus is all about relationships. He went out of His way to be with the sinners, the unlovely, the untouchables. I knew that I needed to do the same; to get rid of the idols of pride, perfectionism, people pleasing and more. I needed to focus on building genuine relationships with people. I needed to love even the unlovely, and God allowed me to do that, which was also a period of growth for me. So pride is where He began His work in me.

Next, He started working on my perfectionism. Like I said, I have struggled my whole life with keeping my home clean! I still do! This doesn’t sound like perfectionism, because you’d think if I was trying to be perfect, my home would also be perfect! Well, that’s not exactly how I am. I hold such high standards for myself, that I then become overwhelmed by the mess, and procrastinate starting because I don’t even know where to begin. And, I have such high standards that they are unrealistic or nearly impossible to meet. So, instead of moving forward, I freeze and get nothing done, or very little, until it piles up and gets worse and worse, and I can’t ignore it anymore. But, by then it’s so bad, that I can never get things the way I want them, so I tell myself, it’s not even worth trying. I now believe it’s a serious sickness in my mind, a way that Satan keeps me stuck! So, I ditched perfection, and have learned to just do my best. I still struggle with overwhelm and procrastination sometimes, but practicing good habits and routines definitely helps.

Then, God showed me that there was more He wanted to work on in my life. He’s great at that! And, I’m sure, as long as I’m listening, He will keep revealing more! That more was another struggle that I’ve had for years! (Over half my life now.) A struggle that I’ve just lived with, and teetered back and forth on for so long that it just seemed ‘normal’. He opened my eyes to my weight issue. I have known that I’m obese for a very long time. In fact, I’ve tried just about every diet program out there. (Weight Watchers, Weigh Down Workshop, Flat Belly, First Place, The Daniel Plan, New Life Promise, Noom, counting calories with apps or on logs, and I’m sure there was probably more than these). However, none worked for the long haul. I’d lose for awhile, and then I’d lose the battle and start regaining. It was a terrible cycle, over and over again. I always felt like God could use me more if I’d just get the weight off. However, I never saw this as anything more than food addiction, or emotional eating. (Even calling it an addiction was something new to me). However, God began to show me that this eating problem was actually not just an addiction, but a stronghold in my life. Food had become an idol. Something I’d go to instead of God. I also viewed weight loss and exercise as a chore, something that was hard to do, and not enjoyable. But, then I was introduced to The Wellness Revelation. I’d been through “Christian” weight loss programs before, but nothing that connected my heart, mind, and spirit like The Wellness Revelation did. The Lord completely renewed my mind, and He is continuing to change my heart, and is showing me that His power and Spirit are in me! And, because of His power in me, I can do anything I set my mind to, even the hard things! And, I have to say that this has been a JOY, not something that is a chore. The food has been exceptional, and exercise is something I view as worship and gratitude! I am able to use my body for health and wholeness, and as an act of worship. Movement now is freeing, as is eating whole and healthy. Some days are harder, because breaking a stronghold is not easy. Satan still tries to tempt me or make me see myself in ways other than the Lord sees me. But, I am excited to continue this journey, and this time I am confident that the Lord will take me to complete freedom and my body, mind, and spirit will continue to transform in the process.

He is a good God, and releases the captives, and He is releasing me! I have to share this with others in hopes that someone else may want to join me on this journey! If that is something that interests you, please leave a comment and let me know. I’d love to connect with you and share even more!

With love and in Christ,

Dena

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