I think I’m sucking at this Christian thing.
For some reason, I keep thinking because I asked Jesus to be my Lord and Savior that all of a sudden, the old Key will die instantly and be replaced with this calm, sweet, kind, generous, and extra pure Key. Instead, I’m saved, yet I’m in a constant battle with the old, ratchet, non-pure, lack of self control Key.
Saved Key: Forgive that person for hurting your feelings.
Old Key: Pssh. Forget forgiveness. Get even.
Saved Key: Surrender your finances to God. Aim at being a good steward.
Old Key: Man, whatever. You want it, you buy it. Worry about the rest later.
Saved Key: Get up and pray. God wants to hear from you.
Old Key: Stay in the bed. You know how you love yourself some sleep.
Saved Key: Ethan made a mistake today. Give him grace.
Old Key: Just yell, yell, and yell some more until you get your point across to him.
I’m a hot mess. I honestly am. I love the Lord so much. I really do. But I’m literally on the struggle bus daily, and I think I forgot how to get off. I talk to my accountability partner. I vent to my saved friends. I try to do all the “right” things that I feel will help me get back on the right track, but to no avail. I stay getting all the encouragement in the world from the Word, my friends, and my family, but I gotta be real—trusting God is hard. Surrendering my life to God’s unknown plan is scary, and I feel like I’m all alone in these feelings…like I’m strugglin’ and sufferin’ in silence or something. Am I betraying all Christians everywhere and God Himself for feeling the way I do???
Man, I gotta be real in order to be healed, so here goes the realness from my heart.
I don’t want to feel like following the Lord is a duty, but some days I feel like it is. I feel like sometimes the saved and sanctified life turns into a bunch of do’s and don’ts. Don’t have sex until you’re married. Don’t settle. Don’t have a love of money. Do trust God even if you don’t understand. Do forgive. Do love people that get on your dang nerves. And on top of all that, I’m told in God’s Word to live by the Spirit and not by the flesh, but this just feels like a whole Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde kind of set up. The Spirit is saying go here, the flesh is saying go there. I’m tryna shut my flesh up so I can submit to the Spirit, but the flesh ain’t goin’ for that without a fight. I’ve been told that as a Christian I have the fruit of the Spirit in me, but lately I been looking around and my patience has been depleted, my kindness went ghost, and I don’t even think gentleness ever showed up to the party. Self control, though? Really??? REALLY, Jesus? Do I honestly have that as a fruit of the Spirit??? If so, why am I not excelling in it, walking in it, and if I had so much of it, why is it not kicking into overdrive when temptation is beating down my door?
I feel overwhelmed. I feel misunderstood. I feel like I’m extra with this salvation thing, but some days I don’t feel extra enough. I just don’t feel saved. I keep messing up in the same areas. I really struggle to hear God’s voice. I want to be perfect, but I’m not. I hold grudges. My attitude be stank. I constantly compare myself to others. I want soooo bad to want God’s will, but I be wanting Him to ok my agenda on the low. Likes? Followers? IG. FB. Do I? Don’t I? What am I called to do? What’s my purpose? Why am I always stressed? I freak out about big things. I freak out about small things, too. At this very moment, I’m freakin’ out internally about being broke and now with no job and money looking funny, God’s answer is to just trust Him?
What the heck does that even look like??
I fall for the wrong men, then despise the right ones. I hold on to friendships that I know may hinder my walk. I read the Word, then pretend to act brand new when God brings it to my remembrance. I be needing to fast, but my inner fat girl just wanna eat and watch Love and Hip Hop. I feel lonely. I feel frustrated. I love being single, and then I hate it. I truly believe that God is going to do something beyond amazing in this season of my life, and then I go right back to questioning if God even remembers my name. Some days….I cry. I cry because being obedient to God really is hard. I cry because I hate losing friends. I cry because I hate dealing with rejection. I hate feeling overlooked by churchy guys. I feel obsolete in a world of incredible and amazing women who seem to never have a hair out of place, who raise their kids without ever raising their voice, who look all put together on Sunday. Will I ever be enough? Will I ever measure up? Why did God even create me? Is this the life of a victorious kingdom woman? God, what the heck is wrong with me? Why do I feel so low????
Oh, but the Word of God. I can be beyond hopeless and bloop—God is like, “Key, who can you relate to in my Word to help you chill out?”
I know just the perfect person—David. I just love David. He had such an honest relationship with God. He truly loved God. Their relationship was so deep and David loved God so much that God Himself proclaimed that David was a man after His own heart. To be honest, I often ask God to make me a woman after His heart. I really want that. With David, he could be real with God. He never had a problem being honest with God about his feelings. If he was sad, he said it. If he was scared, he never kept God guessin’. If he was happy, God was the first to know. Nothing was ever a mystery between them. What I love even more about David is his ability to feel sad, but turn those feelings around by remembering God and who He is. I love how he’d call on God in the midst of fear, shame, and sadness.
Psalm 43:5 (NLT)
Why am I discouraged?
Why is my heart so sad?
I will put my hope in God!
I will praise him again—
my Savior and my God!
David’s expressions to God are straight bomb in the book of Psalms, but just like me, David was at times a hot mess, too. If you ever get a minute, read up on 2 Samuel 11-12. To summarize what happened, David fell hard for a married woman named Bathsheba. He slept with her, she got preggers, and soon after that, he tried to arrange for her hubby to sleep with her so that the hubby wouldn’t find out about the affair. His plan failed, so he had the hubby killed in battle. Man, that whole situation was straight messed up. David had a freakin’ affair, and had somebody killed. If there was ever a time where God could’ve been like, “Look David, I’m done with you,” that would have been the moment.
But God wasn’t done with David, yet. Yes, David repented, and yes God was not pleased. David ended up losing the baby Bathsheba was pregnant with. However, the next child they had together was Solomon–a figure in the Bible best known for his incredible wisdom. What’s even more amazing is that Jesus Christ descended from the line of David!
Luke 1:32-33 (NLT)
32 He will be very great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his ancestor David. 33 And he will reign over Israel forever; his Kingdom will never end!”
David’s story, to me, is one of hope. David messed up, but God still blessed up–big time! And if God can do that for David, He can do it for me, too. I may feel sad, frustrated, lonely, hurt, and all these other crazy emotions, but through it all, God is with me. He’s never left me, and He never will. I may not always FEEL saved, but my salvation ain’t about feelings. My salvation is found in my Jesus. I believe in Jesus. I believe He died, He rose, and that He now lives on the right hand of God. He is my great High Priest. He is my Savior. He is my Defender. He tells me that I’m enough. Shoot, He died to prove it, so what more could I ask for???
Oh Lord, I really don’t know how to stop being a hot mess. These insane feelings sometimes get the best of me. I know that I question You often. My faith wavers. I get scared. I feel defeated. But I love how none of this is a surprise to You. You ain’t in heaven saying, “Oh man! I didn’t know Key would feel this way. Lemme just sit back and let her figure things out.” NO! You are a God that works on my behalf. You are a God that sends people my way to tell me to stop thinkin’ that stupid stuff, and get to reading and confessing what Your Word says. Is being a woman of God hard? Yeah, it can be. But to me, it’s soooo worth it. To think of how blessed people can be through me if I can just get it together and be obedient makes my heart melt. To know that the only God, the God of the Universe sees my efforts, to know that His plans will always trump my stupid fears, to know that He is rooting for me to keep pressing forward…I just can’t give up being a Christian. It cost Jesus too much to purchase me. I owe my life to Him.
God, thank You for letting me vent. Thank You for allowing me to be sad, but it’s time to dust myself off, and remember the great plans You have for me. Please keep working on me. Keep right on working to turn this hot mess into a holy masterpiece. I love You.