You’re a bad mom. You’re a neglectful friend. Your house is a disaster and looks like it threw up toys. Why are you always so stressed? You should be able to deal with this. You should be stronger by now. Why can’t you keep it all together??…The lies of the enemy ring strong if we let them.
“Keep me safe, O God,
for in you I take refuge.
I said to the Lord, “You are my Lord;
apart from you I have no good thing.” Psalm 16:1-2
I sat across from a doctor telling her my story. All that has happened in the last seven years. Almost losing my first son at birth. Losing babies to miscarriage. Leaving my profession to stay home and raise three kids. All the sleep deprived nights. Being attacked by a rottweiller. Building a house. Losing my people to death… How all the good things in life didn’t even seem good anymore.
The list is probably a lot like your story. Maybe in your list there’s depression, anxiety, loneliness, addiction, fear or failure. Our lives are a beautiful mess of God’s greatness and our brokenness– of love, loss, stress, work, life– yet there’s a hole. There’s a better version of you somewhere in there. There’s a joyful, peaceful, loving, excited one in there. But she’s trapped under the world and doesn’t know how to get through all the muck.
So I told the doctor, “I feel like I should be able to hold it all together and be enough for my people. But I’m never enough.”
Looking over her notes she smiled. “Why would you think that? I don’t think anyone could be enough for all of this.”
I need to tattoo that on my forehead. Deep down I knew it already, but I needed someone to say it out loud, even though God has whispered it on my heart so many times. And maybe you need to hear it today too.
So let me say it to you.
You were not meant to be enough for everyone’s needs in your life. You were not even meant to be enough for your own needs. That’s why Jesus died on the cross! Nor are you meant to know right from left on your own in this crazy maze of life. That is not your job on this earth. It’s the job of the Holy Spirit working in you. You are only meant to look to the one who does know the way. Ask for his wisdom. And follow him out. Because God is more than enough for all of our stuff we are holding on to.
“I will praise the Lord who counsels me;
even at night my heart instructs me.
I have set the Lord always before me.
Because he is at my right hand,
I will not be shaken.” Psalm 16:7-8
I don’t want to be shaken anymore. I will not be shaken anymore. I don’t want to strive and come up short at the end of the day. I want God to do work in me, through me, so I can live my life big for him– loving myself and my people with the strength he loans me through his Holy Spirit.
This happens through reading the living word of God in the bible to learn his truths and apply them to our lives in every situation. Praying as many times a day as it takes, talking, pleading, asking God for help and leadership in our doubt and weakness. Listening to the voice of the Holy Spirit on our heart as we pray, as he instructs us and reminds us of God’s will for our lives. And obeying even when it’s hard.
So yes, we do have a job in this life. Our role is to take it all to God through his Holy Spirit and let our actions reflect the wisdom he is spilling into our hearts. I think of my three young children who ask me about 500 thousand questions a day. Why? Who? Can I…? Can we go? When?… They ask me about every tiny decision– from which sock to wear to if they can go to the park alone. They ask. I answer. They listen. They act accordingly. That’s our job as God’s people. To ask. To listen. To act in obedience.
There’s freedom in giving up the fight to be faultless, freedom in opening our hands to the one who really can do the work and change our hearts and lives. There’s peace knowing I’m not in it alone. There’s joy knowing I’m loved and forgiven even on hard days. And excitement in the fact that we’re in this for something bigger than ourselves. We are in this for God’s glory and his kingdom.
“Therefore my heart is glad and my tongue
my body also will rest secure,
because you will not abandon me to the
nor will you let your Holy One see decay.
You have made known to me the path of life;
you will fill me with joy in your presence,
with eternal pleasures at your right hand. Psalm 16:9-11
Our work on earth is eternal. The love we pour out here will not be forgotten. It will live on through generations til we are together with God. It is cause for gladness and crazy rejoicing that we are not forgotten by the God of the universe. He will not leave us to drown in this world if we take up his invitation to be filled with his Holy Spirit.
So, the time to start living with God is now. We can’t wait our whole lives for heaven to experience the presence of God. He is here. He is alive inside you through the Holy Spirit if you believe in Christ. He’s ready to lift us up and be our best friend, counselor, helper, confidant, protector, and guide. Not just for our own sake, but for the sake of his kingdom.
Our people and the world need us to stop drowning and start being a greater force of love; one that can only be lived out with the power of God in us. Our earthly minds may never entirely comprehend all there is to know about the Holy Spirit, but we ask him to come into our lives anyway. We ask him daily to guide us so we can live out his flawless love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.
We can take a breath now. We can take our burdens off our shoulders pound by pound and rest them at God’s feet as we walk with him. We can stop the rat race of working more and trying harder to change our hearts– and let the Holy Spirit do his job as we come to him trusting him to lead us.
The Lord truly is our only good thing. Let’s let go of our grip on life and cling to him with all we’ve got. Because with God’s power and presence in our lives through his Spirit, we can more fiercely and faithfully do our job of loving and serving our people. Becoming ever more fruitful women of God.