For most of my life, I have struggled with areas I am less than proud of: procrastination, lack of motivation, and being inefficient, to name a few. These are aspects of my life that lead to more anxiety, problems in my relationships, and frustration. They are vices that I wish I didn’t have, and they often lead me to more frustrating situations.
Procrastination can often make me verbally “short” with my children or too overwhelmed with a project, blog, or computer work, preventing me from attending to the basic needs of my home. It’s a terrible cycle of putting things off, then working hard at the last minute at the expense of my family, and then starting the cycle all over again. Failure to execute daily mundane tasks can often lead to late nights of laundry, dishes, etc.
Additionally, I tend to believe that these same vices are too ‘insignificant” to involve the Lord in. My mind has always said, “He has greater prayer requests than to be concerned with my small annoyances.” So I plug away at trying to be different, but nothing changes. I cannot save myself from these vices.
However, the Lord has been unlocking areas of my heart over the past six months – freeing me from a very limited mindset. A mindset that says, “some things in my life will never change.” A mindset that says, “you will always be broken.” A mindset that has been afraid to give all control and trust to the Lord to renew and revive me.
It has lately been pressed upon my heart that these are lies from the evil one. He likes to keep me struggling and feeling terrible about my littleness. His mouth whispers lies of inadequacy and judgement. He needs my vices to overtake my virtue, so he can snuff out all light that I bare to this darkening world. He needs a worn-out, ill-equipped, frustrated warrior for God’s Kingdom. He needs me too focused on my short-comings to trust that the Lord can use those to teach me dependence and trust.
He looks to condemn me: You will always lack motivation. You should stop trying. Stand tall…you are fine the way you are. You can’t do any better than this. Why is God asking so much of you?
In contrast, the Lord sends a spirit of conviction. “My grace is sufficient for you. For my power is made perfect in your weakness.” The areas of struggle in my life are my little offerings to give back to Him. I can say, “Take my procrastination, Lord, and help me use my efforts to give you glory.” I can do little things with great love. I can make little daily strides with procrastination or motivation. Just like depositing change into my bank account, my investment in myself will grow – in my daily striving to live a life of grace and goodness. On days when I hear His Spirit whisper into my ear, “why don’t you just make that call right now,” I can have eyes to see that He is helping me conquer my tasks and work through my procrastination. His methods are gentle and thorough, and they don’t lack in anything.
How would our efforts change if we could envision a life devoid of these vices? If we could envision the change that our work and efforts could provide? Do you allow yourself to dream big dreams for yourself? Do you envision what a restored version of yourself feels like? The inner freedom you could live with?
He who the storms obey can be the one who brings that peace. The same God that parted the Red Sea can work a miracle within you. His voice speaks into our hearts…I love you.
Before we can change our environment, our culture, or the journey we are on, we have to begin with ourselves.
Do you want to be well?”John 5:6
Jesus asks this of the man at the well. He also asks this of you and me. Do you want restoration? Will you allow me into those deep places of your heart and soul that need my touch?
Ultimately, He asks us if we believe that we are worth the investment. Do we believe that we are made in His image and likeness? Do we believe that we are worth saving? Worth loving? Worth restoring?
The Lord wants me to experience total restoration and wholeness. He loves me too much to leave me conquered by my own vices.
Where are the painful areas in your life that need to be healed? Jesus wants to be invited into those places.
Lean in. Trust in God’s ever-loving care. He is gentle. Allow Him to strengthen the weak muscles of your faith. Recovery and restoration await you.