I’ve been holding off on sharing my story for some time now. I knew the purpose behind sharing stories, but I didn’t feel like I had much to share. To me, the thing that makes a story great is a happy resolution. In the church, it's that "But God" moment. I have been struggling spiritually for a while, so I figured I didn't have anything to share right now, but I would share when I got that "special revelation" from God.
Spoiler alert: I have no crazy revelation to share. But I do have a story. And it's of a broken girl that struggles every day with her relationship with the Lord. I struggle most with prayer, and I struggle with an addiction to unhealthy foods and pride. Every day is a constant battle between flesh and Spirit that, at times, feels like my heart is literally divided.
Paul sums up my story in a nutshell in Romans 7:21-24: "So I find this law at work: Although I want to do good, evil is right there with me. For in my inner being I delight in God’s law; but I see another law at work in me, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within me. What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death?"
The ironic thing is that I started this story by saying I didn't have a "but God" moment. But as long as God is God, which He always is, there is ALWAYS a "but God" moment. Because verse 25 of Romans 7 says, "[BUT] Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord!" And there are so many other verses of hope that remind us that we are not alone in our struggles. The truth is, no matter how bad of a day I have, no matter how many times I make the wrong choice, and no matter what I find myself in the middle of, God is constant, unwavering, faithful, and present through it all. And I know, no matter how many times I mess up, God wants to hear from me, so I don't need to shamefully avoid him.
This is me, and this is my story. I finally decided to share it because so many times, I will wait until after I’ve “fixed” myself up to share what I went through. Never what I am presently going through. And just as we shouldn't do this in our communication with God, we also aren't supposed to do this within the body of Christ. The church exists partly to encourage and support one another in our walk with God.
So I want to encourage others who may have also been waiting for a big "God moment" to tell their stories. Sometimes our stories aren't what we consider necessarily interesting, or they may not even have an ending yet, but you never know when someone else is going through the same thing. You may be missing an opportunity to witness, strengthen, or encourage someone else, or to be strengthened or encouraged yourself. And of course, no matter what your struggle is, there is always a "but God".
Ephesians 2:4-5 "But God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love for us, even when we were dead in our transgressions, made us alive together with Christ."