Battling Your Mind

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One unexpected lesson I’ve learned from pregnancy that has challenged me in all areas of life is how to gracefully receive blessing.  That may not be something difficult for you or seem like something you struggle with , but let me explain further.

Pregnancy, business, relationships, you name the area, but when you receive a miracle or the fulfillment of a long held deep desire it is incredible. Somehow though because of what weight it holds in your heart it is hard to fully celebrate and soak up the blessing God has given you.  You want to celebrate and fully relish in the blessing and God’s goodness but something seems to hold you back. You want to soak up all the joy and laughter that comes with seeing a dream realized, but yet there is a part of you that feels either numb or in some cases we feel guilt or shame. Strange right? I have a sense though that I’m not the only one. Let me share what happened for me.

When I found out I was pregnant, it was the very first window that I had to get pregnant.  I thought we would take longer, my sisters, my family typically have that as their story. But that wasn't us.  While I was so so grateful it happened, the next thought I had was the risk of miscarriage. I have many friends who have experienced that.  Now through the 2nd trimester, I’ve found myself thinking about what conditions, syndromes, or diseases she could have. I’d like to consider myself a positive person, but I want to be real here.  On some level I don’t feel deserving to have a smooth and healthy pregnancy. You see because so many people I love have faced pain in the arena of childbearing I thought I deserved it too. But I was missing the point.

My girlfriends didn’t deserve to deal with the pain of loss from miscarriages, they didn’t deserve trials that come with loss of a child early from illness, they didn’t deserve to endure years of fertility treatments and countless disappointed attempts.  I was looking at this blessing all wrong. It isn’t about who deserves blessing and who doesn’t. To be honest, we all are undeserving as we are all flawed. The key I’ve found is that regardless of what trials we face we are all built for victory. We live in a world where sadly pain and loss will happen, but what we all have in common is that how we choose to respond to those things displays our victory.  We can bow our faith to the level of our circumstances, or we can shift our focus onto what is truth and boldly lay hold of what has been given to us. When we receive blessings and victory comes that is the time when we get recharged and fully refreshed to dive in again and accomplish the next great thing.  Victory should be enjoyed and shared. That is how we advance together.

To diminish or downplay the value of the moments of victory we do have, down plays the other battles and struggles we have fought and won.  We are NOT the sum total of our victories. Our value is based in what someone is willing to place on us, and our creator paid the price of His only son to pay for what we could not.  You see my life, your life is priceless. Those joyous moments fuel us into the next battle. They strengthen our hearts and minds to withstand the trials ahead.  To disregard them is to refuse to feed and nourish our soul and spirit on the strength that is drawn from joy. Joy that is anchored in the truth that all blessings we have are because of the Goodness of our God.

When you find yourself in a place of shame or guilt instead of celebration and victory it isn’t because something bad is coming. I want to propose that is because our expectations have fallen into the trap of the fears of this world. It is likely you now expect bad things to happen over the good, it is a sign that you have lost your ability to rejoice.  Today my friend I want to encourage you that a shift of perspective to see beyond the moment will help you unlock joy! Even when things have gone wrong, for you or someone you love, there is still good to be celebrated if you are willing to look for it. This requires two fundamental beliefs: God is Good and all things work together for good. Not all things come from God, are because you deserve them or not, but simply by the nature of what our world is today.

Life is not to be tolerated.  Guilt is not something we are to hold onto.  We can acknowledge it and own it so we can address the root issue behind it.  For me these feelings stirred up because of an undealt issue of unworthiness. Once I realized that limiting belief was what was holding me back, I began to let the guilt go and separate my victory from another’s loss and vice versa.  What is holding you back from fully being able to rejoice and celebrate the victories and wins that are going on in your life, or the lives of those around you?