It’s Okay to Let Go

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Whenever I move house I’m amazed by all the stuff that I have collected, rubbish, that I never even needed in the first place. Bin-bags and bin-bags full of the stuff.

But I get the impression that this isn’t though only rubbish we carry through life. We carry unseen baggage as well. The secrets sins we have burred and hidden, the unkind words we have believed, the fears and worries and doubts. Without ever realising it we are dragging our own bin-bags full of baggage through life.

Maybe you are reading this, carrying unnecessary burdens. Burdens that you were never meant to carry.

Maybe you have been carrying them for so long it doesn’t even feel like they are there any more. It feels like they have become part of you.

Maybe it has become so familiar that it is like a strange kind of security blanked.  You don’t know how to live without it.

Maybe you believed the lie that because Christian life is hard, it should be miserable, you don’t realise that you can let these things go. That it’s okay to let them go.

You do not need to carry the burden of unforgiveness or guilt.

You do not need to carry the burden of regret or fear

You do not need to carry the burden of other people’s expectations.

You can let these things go. You do not need to hold onto them. They are not part of you, even if it feels like they are.

Like an infection, polluting the body, when you get rid of these things, you can be whole a healthy and complete.

Like a heavy weight pressing on you, making you bend over, these burdens can shape and damage you. When you let go of them, you can stand up straight and walk tall again.

You do not need them. You can be free. You are allowed to be free. You are allowed to be happy. You are allowed to be complete. You can let go.

Cast [a]your burden upon the Lord and He will sustain you;
He will never allow the righteous to [b]be shaken Psalm 55:22 NASB

 

 

 

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6 Reasons to Share Your Story (even if it seems boring!)

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I love hearing testimonies in church. Stories of how God has completely changed a person’s life around.

These stories are such an encouragement, and they really do strengthen my faith. But sometimes it seems churches only want to share the most dramatic stories.Stories of the people who once were drug dealers or suicidal criminals who God dragged from the pits of hell, and wrapped into his arms.From darkness to light; from broken to complete.

While these stories are great sometimes it can make people like me, and I imagine many people reading this, feel as though our stories are not worth sharing.

This is not truth, it’s a lie many have come to believe, and even an excuse many have used.

But we do not need to believe this lie, our stories are worth sharing for so many reasons.

Sharing your testimony acknowledges God as Lord over your life. I would not be where I am today without Jesus. I don’t know where I would be, but I know my weaknesses, the sins I am most often drawn too, so I can sort of begin to imagine. If I do not share my testimony it would be like me saying I could have got to this point on my own. Continue reading

How to Stay Positive, Even When You Don’t Feel Like it

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What do you find it easier to do: Count your blessings; or count your failures? Count the things that you have done, or count the things you haven’t?

I know which one is easier for me.

I guess I’m good at complaining. My husband tells me, in his American accent, that it’s a British thing.

Maybe it is, I’m not sure though.

All I know, is that I find it easy to complain. Whether it’s about the weather, work, or where I’m living: I find it much easier to notice what has gone wrong than what has gone right. Continue reading

The Times You Feel Unlovable

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I don’t know if you know the story of Rachel and Leah found in the Old Testament of the bible. Basically, it’s the story of two sisters Rachel, the beautiful sister, (she was definitely a shiny girl) and Leah, the not so beautiful older sister. I don’t know much about the rivalry between sisters, only having the one brother (thankfully!) but reading this story I’m sure anyone can begin to imagine it.

You see, both the girls find themselves married to the same man: Jacob. Continue reading

How to Find Freedom from Feelings of Loneliness

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When I was in about year five or six at school, I remember my teacher asking the class to tell her all the times that they feel lonely. All the other children said things like: “When I’m in a field on my own,” or “When I’m in my room on my own.” I put my hand up and said. “In the playground.”

It felt like the entire class was laughing at me. I was humiliated. Because how can you be lonely when you are not alone? Continue reading

The Power of Hope

When we hear people mention the word hope we often think of some thing vague, something weak, something which is there to  lean on in times of trouble.

As if hope is the easy option. Except it’s not.

Hope isn’t just about hoping for nice weather or that the dress you really want is on sale. Hope is so much more, hope is about action, actually doing something. It’s about having faith, even when it seems impossible

Patrick Reagan puts it like this  in his book No Ceiling to Hope: “Hope is the refusal to accept a situation as it is.” That kind of hope is not definitely not easy. It takes courage and strength.

It’s hard when you’re waiting for a break through, when you can see so much potential in someone, but they just don’t seem to get it.

It’s hard every time you turn on the TV and see children dying, and leaders lying and people hurting other people. You wonder how there can be any hope in this situation.

It’s hard when everyone else has given up, when you’re the only one holding on.

Hoping in these situations can make you want to cry, it can make you want to break down and give up. But rrue hope holds on, even when it seems impossible, even when the wall of faith seems insurmountable.

What seems impossible it can only be made possible through Christ. The only way we can ever hope to hope is through him.

This hope is a strong and trustworthy anchor for our souls. It leads us through the curtain into God’s inner sanctuary. (Hebrews 6:19)

Without him we have no hope, we are adrift at sea.

Without him we are hope-less.

But through Christ we can hold on to hope.

A hope that anchors and grounds us, a hope that leads us into a deeper knowledge of him. A hope that refuses to give up, refuses to accept the situation as it is. A hope that has the power to change the world.

Hope is not for wimps, hope is hard. But through Christ it is possible to have hope in all situations.

Just Dipping my Toes in the Water

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Do you ever feel as if you are not living life fully? That there is so much more available, but you are not quite getting it.

Do you feel like you are just dipping your toes in the water when there is a whole ocean to dive into?

You don’t mind it in the shallow end, there is no risk, it is keeping your toes cool… And you’re not going to ruin your hair.

But from where you are sitting you can see other people, jumping right in, getting covered in the water. Fully experiencing all that it has to offer. They don’t care about the risks and they don’t worry about their hair. They are in the deep end and loving it.

Sometimes I feel like this, like there is so much more on offer, that I am not quite taking advantage of. That there are things that I am not experiencing that I should.

Maybe because I am afraid. Taking risks can be scary. Living life in the deep end takes courage, but how much life is there in the shallows.

Sometimes I don’t try that hard at things for worry of messing up; sometimes I don’t put myself out there for risk of rejection; sometimes I don’t take up the opportunities that come my way for fear of failure.

I don’t use all the skills that God has given me and I don’t make the most of the opportunities that he has given me. I don’t step out in faith.

I do it with this blog, I don’t put in as much effort as I could, worried that if I try my hardest my words will still go unread. I can do it in friendships, not calling people when I know I should in case I annoy them. I live a life of fear, a life in the shallow end, in so many areas of life. But God doesn’t want this.

God calls us to live life abundantly.

People think that Christianity means giving up, living less. They focus too much on the sacrifice and not enough on the blessing.

 The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly. (John 10:10)

Life without God cannot ever be a full life. Without God we cannot know true love, true joy or true peace. We cannot live an abundant life without him. He is the one who gives life. The only life worth living is through him.

When you reach your last days do you want to look back and think I wish I had done more, I wish I had lived more and loved more or do you want to look back at a life lived abundantly. A life full of adventure.

I know which one I would choose.