The Challenge of Transparency Part 2. The Lessons I've Learned.

Firstly, thank you for the support and encouragement you have given me, it's highly appreciated. I hope in some way God can use it to help. Secondly, on with the main thing! To briefly recap, over the past few months I have been struggling with temptation to make up stories, which completely encompass my thoughts, emotions and distract me from everyday life, people, and most of all God. This started from being an only child, but recently this has become more of a struggle again, and it's put me in many situations where I have had to examine what I was thinking about God, in my guilt ridden state, and how that matches up to how He actually is. Needless to say, I have learnt a lot, and I just wanted to share some of these things with you guys.

Firstly, something that we say often and 'know' about God truly hit me. Simply this; God never changes. He is patient, loving, and kind; slow to anger, quick to show mercy. Pretty much everything that, as humans, we are not, especially towards ourselves. When I would get some perspective on my stories, realise I'd been making them up again for however long, I would (and still do) look back on how long I had been 'clean' for, successful in not worshipping my idol, and picture a scene like one where a pebble skips across the water. The pebble represented me, and every where it landed was a place I'd crash landed in front of God, having fallen off the wagon once again. It didn't matter how far away from the original point I was, I was still back in front of God, saying sorry. I hadn't got anywhere, a little further down the timeline I was still stuck in the same cycle of events. That annoys, terrifies and upsets me, and I'm sure it does you when you can't kick that habit or thing that you hate. But the beauty is, that no matter how annoyed I was at myself, God didn't care, He wasn't getting annoyed, frustrated and impatient with me. Literally as a mother picks up her child when he's learning to walk, so God picked me up, told me He was still with me and that was all that mattered, and called me forward to try again. Please, anyone who is feeling like they've let themselves and God down, do not for a second think He is judging you; you are His child, He might not like the things that you are doing, but He DELIGHTS in you. I once got to a stage where I couldn't say that God loved me anymore; I couldn't believe He thought about me other than to turn His nose in disgust and list my failures. I remembered a time I was certain of Zechariah 3:17 which says God rejoices over you with singing, and practically cried; I just couldn't put that scripture and me together. The same night I told God that I didn't believe that scripture was true, a random stranger told me that exact verse. God never changes, just our perception of Him. He adores you, always has, always will. Nothing you can do will change that.

Secondly, sinning is part of being human. It's why we need Jesus. We hate it, and try not too (most of the time), but we do. The main reason I'm saying this is because there's a popular worship song that says 'I have decided to follow Jesus, no turning back, no turning back, the Cross before me, the world behind me, no turning back, no turning back.' Everytime I listened to these words in church, guilt hit me like a punch in the stomach because I did/do turn back, on a regular basis. I pick up the thread of story I've currently been spinning until the sick feeling in my stomach gets too much or I snap myself out of it. How can I sing this song when I know, with almost absolute certainty that I am going to become one of the people who yelled 'Crucify him!' in the next few hours or days by falling back into this cycle? And that, of course assumes that I only commit this sin! Through repeatedly coming back and saying 'I've screwed up again,' I learned that no matter how many times you 'turn back' and fall off the wagon, as long as you keep coming back to Him, at the cross, no matter how long it takes you to make that turn, you haven't fully turned away. It doesn't matter if you're heart is open, ready to receive Him, stone cold and in need of warming, or in need of some desperate surgery, you're still walking with Jesus, you're still trying to leave the world behind you, and that's what matters, because as I've already said, He never changes. He's still there waiting to walk with you to the next adventure.

I'm again running low on characters so it looks like there will be a part 3, but please, please don't let yourself think what I did, that God has written you off, even when you make horrible mistakes. You are His child, whom He loves and did the impossible for, simply because He loves you. Listen to Francesca Battistelli - He Knows My Name and Hello My Name is by Matthew West, they're amazing songs!

Blessings x

P.s. On another note, if you can tell me how to keep the paragraph spacing in these blogs, that would be great! It keeps changing the format when I post! :(

K Reynolds @kreynolds ·

If you are having trouble with formatting your blog properly, please click on the "contact" at the bottom of the page. That will put you in touch with tech support. Often the problem is related to the browser or the operating system you are running or the word processing program you are using so include as much information as possible.

Joyce Bethy Ferguson @bethy ·

We often worry that we are the only Christians who stuff up on a regular basis . The truth is so different for all of us make a mess of it on a daily basis .

This journey we are on is filled with mine fields and pits which we Christians fall into and step on all too often. But you see this is where Grace steps in. This is where mercy comes into it's own. In our failures our God is glorified through his forgiveness.

This is a good blog . I thoroughly enjoyed it.

K Reynolds @kreynolds ·

Romans 8:1 says:

"Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus," (NIV)

One thing that is important to remember is that while the Holy Spirit will convict us, cause us to become aware of our sin and our need to make things right with God, a spirit of condemnation is not of God. The best example of this is the difference between a parent who corrects and disciplines their child when necessary and the one who berates them, never letting them forget their shortcomings and failures...ever. The latter is not God. It is the enemy and when this happens the best course of action is to do exactly what 1 John 1:9 tells us to do and declare that God is our judge and HE says...

It is amazing what happens when you tell the enemy to take his complaints about you to God. :mrgreen:

Beth M @blest ·

The same night I told God that I didn't believe that scripture was true, a random stranger told me that exact verse.

That gave me goosebumps.

Wonderful truths here.

Les Braswell @doneuntotheleast ·

Excellent blog and April any mask or facade all of place during any day is a made up story. The Lord knows the real truth and we get to answer to Him. Think I have one for any masquerade party! In Christ, Les