We live in a world of fear. Since my journey to Jesus, one constant theme I see in the people around me is brokenness. We live in a broken world full of chaos, and one bad thing happens after another. People are constantly on edge, constantly anxious and constantly battling something bigger then themselves.
How do I know this? Because I used to be one of those people. I used to live a life full of anxiety, I used to live a life full of worry, full of fear, full of brokenness that I couldn’t quite figure out how to get rid of, so I put on a mask to show I was okay and never really let anyone know I wasn’t. I was never fulfilled.
I would see people who have faith and see this energy about them, a sense of fulfillment and a sense of ease with their life. I wanted to live a life without worry and I wanted to feel more fulfilled. I wanted what they had.Ephesians 5:14-15 says that God wants us to live a life with honour, purpose and courage and that’s exactly what I wanted. I wanted to be surrounded with purpose, courage, honour and I knew that strength would only come from Jesus.
On the outside looking in I looked like I had it all figured out. I made a good amount of money, had a ton of friends, travelled often, was always doing something fun or exciting, but to be honest it was all a cover up so I wasn’t alone in my thoughts. I worked so much to try to fulfill something in me and the moment I sat still I felt alone, isolated, purposeless. I had friends that were great when they were, but if you needed them in times of trouble you couldn’t count on them. I had money that I would use to buy “things” because I thought if I bought a car I would feel fulfilled, if I refurnished my apartment I would be fulfilled and it just left me feeling even more empty then before. I realized that money, materialistic things, the wrong community and being a workaholic couldn’t fix my soul.
When fixing my eyes on Jesus and going through this season of change in my life it was HARD, it was so challenging and it made me grow. It made me change into this person I did not recognize. I became a person who was at ease in challenging times, who knew that pain was present, but only temporary to adapt and create change in me, and God was adding long term value to my life. I knew that I was like a deep rooted tree. My leaves may fall off during seasons of pain/growth, but I was so firmly planted in my foundation that allowed me the growth that God wanted in my life.
Do you know where worry comes from? It comes from thinking we are in control and trying to be in control. True rest is unattainable for people who are obsessed with leading their own lives.
Psalm 127:1-2 NIV says “Unless the Lord builds the house, the builders labor in vain. Unless the Lord watches over the city, the guards stand watch in vain. In vain you rise early and stay up late, toiling for food to eat- for he grants sleep to those he loves”
Finding God meant finding less worry and finding more joy. It meant leaning on him in hard times instead of trying to be in control of everything. It meant letting go of the things that were crumbling from my life and realizing that these things were leaving my life to make space for new things that added value.
When I first started on my journey of faith I didn’t know where to begin. Sure, I went to church but to me I didn’t want to just go through the motions of church I wanted something more, so I started watching youtube videos of different pastors and when I did, I wanted more, then I wanted more and I couldn’t stop. Whenever I felt like there was something I needed to hear a fellow christian would reference the bible and say something to me that just fit and eased whatever I was going through. I knew God was talking to me. Then I started attending Alpha, I went to a women's conference, I started reading bible plans daily and when I would flip open the bible to seek out God's word and I would highlight so much because it just resonated with me. I realized that all those self help books I read over the years were nothing compared to what I was reading now. The bible had become my life line. The counsellor I always needed.
Since coming to faith I have had more love for people, I have had more compassion, I am nicer to people, and if you ask anyone who has seen the change in me one word they always use to express the change in me is that I now have a sense of peace. I turned to Jesus's love and ultimately I love myself more now then ever before.
- An Apple A Day