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Press On

October 4, 2008

Come, let us return to the Lord.
– Hosea 6:1a

Writing on my blog has gotten a lot harder since I left my old church. There are many reasons why – but the bottom line is that it feels more difficult to be transparent here. Funny – it is easier to write about being sent to school naked when I was little than it is to write about how hard it’s been to leave my old church.

So I’m writing less. Or, at least, I’m posting less.

I am so afraid of being judged by the people from my old church who read my blog. As I talk about my difficulties in connecting in a new church or I share how lonely I’ve been, I imagine my old friends reading my posts, shaking their heads.

This issue goes deeper than my blog. I haven’t been able to talk to God honestly, either – especially about things related to church. I don’t fit in well at the church we’ve been attending and I imagine God shaking His head on throne while I tell Him about it.

A few days ago, I started praying honestly about my feelings with God. My plan of ignoring how lonely I feel in church…not talking to Him about how disconnected I feel right now in the body of Christ – it wasn’t really working.

I brought Him all of my emotions and dumped them in a huge, messy pile at His feet.

Here, Lord. Here is my anger.
And, here, God. Here is my rejection.
My confusion? Please, take all of that.
And all my sadness, Jesus. There you go.
Oh, and definitely take my loneliness, Lord. You know what it’s like to be lonely – so, here – I’m handing this over.

Once I became honest with God, I could finally hear His voice again.

And He didn’t say what I thought He would. There was no stern voice condemning me – instead He whispered (oh, His gentle whisper) to me:

“Jess, I want you to believe that I want you and Hugh and your children in a healthy church where you are all growing closer to me.”

Oh. I really haven’t been believing that lately. I mean, I haven’t trusted or believed in Him at all. I have forgotten that He wants good for me. God doesn’t want me lonely or confused or wandering.

As soon as the Holy Spirit showed me that I was not trusting God, I had a choice to make. I could keep feeling upset and distant from God, or I could start believing Him.

I decided to start believing Him.

This morning, I woke up early and spent time praying over every hurt that I have had about church. Carefully giving everyone and everything to Jesus – and asking for His awesome Presence to fill that local body. I felt His love for the church as I prayed for them. I smiled as I felt lighter and lighter as I prayed over each thing.

Now I have hope again. Hope that He is in control. Hope that God will take care of me and lead me into the place He wants me. I laid down my worry, fear, and a million other things – and He came and filled me with Himself.

Come.
Let us return to the Lord.
He has torn us to pieces; now He will heal us.
That we might live in His Presence.
That we might know the Lord.
Let us press on to know Him.

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6 Comments leave one →
  1. October 4, 2008 12:47 pm

    Hope this will release you to post more! Blessings- amy

  2. October 4, 2008 4:09 pm

    you have such a ministry jess….don’t let satan take it away.
    i’m so blessed by you and your blog….keep it up!
    you’ll never know how many days i come to your place and God either
    speaks something new and timely…..or it’s confirming what I was already hearing from Him….or it just echoed my heart.
    hope you hava fantastic weekend. *HUG*

  3. October 4, 2008 5:57 pm

    Jess, thank you so much for the realness and the honesty. It was such a refreshing blessing that I so needed today. I so needed to see that vulnerability in a child of God. I needed to see a child of God willing to get into the sludge of what is in the deepest and darkest parts of their heart and being willing to share it in order to minister to someone else. Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!

  4. October 5, 2008 11:35 pm

    Thanks for an awesome post. We’re going through some very rough things at our church and personally, and I’m dealing with the same not wanting to post about it or be truthful with God about it. So thanks for sharing your story and motivating me to do the same.

  5. October 6, 2008 6:34 am

    Jess. Ah… What to say….

    Well, I know “Ann” that just posted above me. She put a link up for your blog on hers. Let’s just say I am one that left the church I came here to help “plant” two years ago. Reasons are not necessary, here.

    Thank you for your post! The beginning is exactly where I have been for a while now. This weekend, in fact, I had several long cries regarding feeling like I just do not know how to feel about the people that still go to church there and obviously do not connect with me anymore. Sigh. Though, I think I found a new church where I can be fed and grow and HEAL! I pray the same for you and your family! 🙂

  6. October 6, 2008 2:36 pm

    Blog Network:Name:Mourning Into DancingTopics:ChristianJoin my networkBlog Networks

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