I have to apologize –
on behalf of myself and anyone else who ever made this Christian faith thing seem like a walk in the park.
It isn’t always one.
I felt like I should write this to you because I know sometimes it can be lonely feeling like you’re the only one who can never get it right or do right. I know how much guilt you probably feel not living up to what you know God expects from you, and frankly, a lot of what you’ve come to expect from yourself.
This is me asking – pleading with you – to be gentle with yourself. Give yourself Grace.
Ever tried tightrope walking? I haven’t. But I’m sure any circus acrobat will tell you that while it may look effortless, walking the straight and narrow is never easy and, in fact, takes years and years of practice and discipline to pull off. You fall, then you get back on it. You trip, and you try again.
Our faith walk is no different. The straight and narrow is a difficult path to walk whether you’re on the tightrope or off it.
I have had great seasons and good seasons and bad seasons and ‘I-don’t-really-want-to-have-to-deal-with-all-this-Christian-stuff-atm’ seasons. There have been days where God was all I needed, days when He never seemed to be enough, and days where I couldn’t even be bothered to do the whole Christian thing because simply existing was all I could muster the strength for. I can’t tell you the number of times it excites me to find out something I said or wrote blessed someone or helped them out of a tough place… but then there are times when I just want to be Eudora and not that ‘saved-and-celibate’ chick who has all the answers. Slayed & Saved is everything I am and everything I still aspire to be, and yet there are days I wish I wasn’t, because maybe then people would stop tip-toeing around me as if I’m just waiting to wag a righteous finger at them.
And don’t get me started on the guilt. I feel guilty every day I don’t read my Bible or pray (yes, there are many days this happens lol). I feel guilty that I don’t serve in church like I used to because I’m always traveling, and I even feel guilty sometimes when I begin to feel that other people who I started this walk with seem to have outgrown my faith. I even feel guilty when I write or post or say something that isn’t about Jesus!
But GRACE. GRACE. This walk might originate in the park, but there are some rocky and thorned areas along the way. GRACE is how you make it through. GRACE is what will keep you from giving up or throwing in the towel when it seems too hard. Grace from God but also Grace from YOURSELF. Failing to give yourself Grace and a chance to do better will kill your spirit, and drive you away from God, because you will begin to feel unworthy of being His, forgetting that He already bought you for a price and you couldn’t escape His love if you tried.
So don’t give up. Please. Give yourself Grace and try again. And again. And again. That is the only way we can ever hope to win this race. Keep forgiving and keep trekking until it becomes second nature. Eventually, you will find your weaknesses – your sore spots and the things that trip you up and drive you away from God – and you will be able to avoid them. Soon you’ll realize that a day or two away from His word because things get busy doesn’t mean a day or two away from His presence – everything we do can be an act of worship. Soon you’ll begin to see Him more clearly even in the most mundane things and you will stop confining Him to boxes of religion; you will know that He is as crazy-in-love with your passion for blending eyeshadows or taking beautiful pictures of His creation as He is with your passion for diving into His word.