I am delighted to welcome Jessica Van Roekel as a guest blogger today. Jessica is faithful, diligent and obedient. I am proud to feature her words.
I’m good at bravado, but not so much at living brave. I know how to stand tall and smile with the best of them, but inside I’m cowering, hiding tears, insecure, wondering if I belong or even if I’m wanted.
I know verses. I know that if I’m full of God then there’s no room for anything else. I know that my song is God’s song. I know that he is my refuge, my shield, and my fortress. I know he holds me close and sings songs over me. I know he calls me chosen, beloved, secure, approved, and beautiful. I know all these things and I was so mad at myself for the disconnect between my head and my heart.
So there I sat—alone, with no one beside me—listening to the melody, learning my part or trying—all the while fighting back tears. It was absolutely ridiculous and I was furious with myself. And to be totally honest, furious with God. Why would he compel me to audition for this musical and then humiliate me in this way? It didn’t make any sense.
Have you felt this way? Has God ever shown you a truth and set you free from your bondage and then in an instant you were in bondage again or so it seemed? Have you ever felt you utterly failed God and yourself?
May I offer you and I this encouragement: God is not disappointed with you or me. God is not going to send us into a situation and then leave us to work it out in our own strength. He will provide us with opportunities to exercise our faith in the work he’s doing in our lives. And just like with regular exercise, we will stumble until we figure out the rhythm or the sequence, but if we keep practicing we get better, we grow stronger, we become more fluid, and it becomes second nature because we’ve trusted him and let him work through us.
Freedom from fear of man came for me through one definitive moment a few years ago, and since that moment God has been showing me how to live free. It hasn’t been easy, but it has been worthwhile. My perspective has shifted from being afraid of people to being settled in God’s thoughts towards me.
You know, I wanted to run from that audition room and never, ever look back. In fact, I walked out of rehearsal that night determined to quit and planned on letting the director know my decision the next morning.
I didn’t though. I leaned into the pain because I’ve learned that sometimes healing comes through the pain, not by avoiding the pain. So I took my younger self by the hand and let her feel the pain. I let her remember and shed her tears, and then I walked her through forgiveness. Was it easy? Uh, absolutely not. Is it over? No, but the cleaning out of the wound has happened, the salve of God’s truth has been applied, and the wound is tender, but it’s healing.
Sometimes we have to experience the hard so that God’s word becomes alive, and once the revelation of his truth, his freedom, and his healing has been revealed, it’s not ever to be taken away by someone’s words, approval, disapproval, memories, or event.
Becoming fear fighters happens when we’re transformed from the inside out and it requires us to keep taking steps towards faith and bravery, clinging to truth and always, always trusting God’s heart for us.
***Get the book Fear Fighting, by Kelly Balarie today.
Take part in the 4 Days to Fearless Challenge.
Jessica Van Roekel is a woman on the journey to wholeness through brokenness. She believes that through Christ our personal histories don’t have to define our present or determine our future. Her greatest desire is to see people live this ‘God-life’ with all the power and grace that God provides. Jessica lives in a rural community with her husband and four children. She leads worship on Sundays, but seeks to be a worshiper every day. You can connect with her at www.welcomegrace.com and on Facebook: www.facebook.com/yourJessicaVanRoekel
Get all the Purposeful Faith blog posts by email – click here.