Refuse to go under

I don’t usually talk about my findings in scripture in and of themselves. They are more commonly the foundation of an idea or life event and those things become the topic of discussion through the lens of God’s word. Here though, I want to share how God’s truth kept me from drowning.

For the past couple weeks I’ve been experiencing this ongoing fight with Satan. In short, he has been telling me that I’m “too much.” I acknowledge that Satan is the enemy. I do not wrestle against flesh and blood, so the powers that be are to blame, not any person/people used as a vessel (Ephesians 6:12). Initially, it was pretty vague, but as time went on, the indistinctiveness (not sure if that’s a real word) became clear and constant.

You are too emotional

You are too talkative

You are too serious

You are too opinionated

You are too complicated

You are too eager

You are too loud

You are too common

You are too curious

You are too inquisitive

You are too analytical

You. Are. Too. Much.

As the days and weeks went on, I started to believe him. If you listen to something long enough, it becomes a part of you. I think this is one of many reasons why Solomon implores us to guard/keep our hearts. If not, the truth gets drowned in the bellow of lies and you go under along with it.

You lose your breath. You lose your capacity to survive. You lose yourself in the belittlement of all that you thought made you special. You feel yourself drowning. You feel the weight of the water pushing you down, no matter how hard you try to swim.  You grapple for air and as soon as your mouth opens, it’s shut with the berating power of hurt-filled insults. Despite the pressure of it all, you open your mouth again to scream for help and taste those attacks on your tongue. They fill your cheeks… then your throat…then your chest… and right before they reach your lungs and you drown in the weight of Satan’s trickery; God’s truth draws you to the surface.

A good friend, unknowingly said exactly what the Lord wanted me to hear, “Shakiyla, you are not too much…” As the tears began to flow, I found myself finally resting in the arms of His grace. I’ve come to terms with the fact that we live in a world where most people are either incapable or uninterested in learning the intricacies of our existence. Thankfully, God already knows and for eternity, He will welcome us into His presence. Nothing is too much for the Father. Your baggage is not baggage to Him. Your personality is not merely tolerated by Him. He loves you. All of You. He will mold you daily to look more like His son and in that transforming love, you will find rest.

So, here are some tangible reminders of the truth that I promise will keep you from drowning:

  1. “He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.” Psalm 147:3. All of those broken pieces that you may be expecting others to put back together, are His for the holding. They may try, and some may succeed, but all of you is exactly what He asks for. Let Him bind you up.
  2. “In the cover of your presence you hide them from the plots of men; you store them in your shelter from the strife of tongues.” Psalm 31:20. Not only will He protect you from Satan, He will protect you from yourself and the harshness of others. Seek Him. Take refuge under His wing and find rest there. We are warriors in a world that goes against all that we stand on. Be confided in the truth that you may be knocked down, but you can find rest, rejuvenation, and restoration in the Father.
  3. “Jesus is the same yesterday and today and forever.” Hebrews 13:8. People change. Circumstances change. Relationships change. We live a life of acclimation or reservation. We choose to either deal with the changes put before us, or to flee. It can be exhausting, but the enduring power of the love of God is what makes it exceptional. Be reminded, although others may change; He never will. His love is constant. His presence is forever. He is near to His children indefinitely.
  4. “Behold, my eye has seen all this, my ear has heard and understood it. What you know, I also know; I am not inferior to you. But I would speak to the Almighty and I desire to argue my case with God.” Job 13:1-3. Stop defending yourself to people. Your service and your life are in His hands. In brokenness, misunderstanding, and defeat, go to the one who KNOWS. Cast that heart of yours over to the Lover of it. You may not be as confused as people make you feel. You may not be as wrong as you’re being told. You will not get that clarity from a human heart, so go to God.
  5. “Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you, casting all your anxieties on him because he cares for you.” 1 Peter 5:6-7. As tempting as it is to bring your every thought, worry, question, and anxious thought to people you love, understand that they cannot bear the weight of it all. Yes, we are called to bear each other’s burdens, but we are also called to submit those to God. Which do you think should come first? Go to Him and you may find no need to go to them, and that’s okay.

He is everything we need and more. Stop searching for the validation, affirmation, and acceptance from people in this life. Your closest friend cannot be your Jesus. Your parents cannot be your Jesus. Your family cannot be your Jesus. Your children cannot be your Jesus. Your spouse cannot be your Jesus. YOU cannot be your Jesus. They cannot save you and thankfully, they are supposed to. We not only need a Lord, we need a Savior. Saving is transactional (don’t think that’s a word either). He calls us in and we should respond in love by relinquishing all. I was holding on to my identity and today, as I finished this blog, I gave it to Him. What are you holding on to? What can I pray you would pour like sweet perfume at the feet of the Father? I’m here, but more importantly, He is.

Thank you for reading. I hope it encouraged.

I love you.

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3 Comments on “Refuse to go under

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