As I write this I am a ball of nerves (what a fun expression for such a terrible feeling!). I am anxious, worried, and apprehensive. I have to get up in less than 5 hours but am I sleeping…nope. Can’t quite get calm enough to get real sleep. I’ve been fretting and worrying for weeks now…months really. Why? What impending doom is keeping me awake at night?
I’m going on a once-in-a-lifetime awesome trip to the Holy Land with my parents and a bunch of the most wonderful people from my “home” church.
That’s right I’m worked up about an exciting trip.
I know it sounds crazy. Believe me I’m very familiar with sounding crazy. I know what crazy sounds like. It’s taken me a long time to really figure out why I’m so anxious. In fact it took a conversation with my sister (she’s so awesome) and a very direct question. The question was “It’s not like you really think that something bad is going to happen is it?”
And the answer is no. No I don’t think anything bad is going to happen. But it feels like so much good has happened that I don’t deserve it. Surely something must be wrong for me to, not only go on this trip with these people I love, but to have all the blessings in my life that I have been given. It’s been an amazing week full of such amazing moments. But I’m constantly waiting for the other shoe to drop.
I don’t think I deserve good things.
I’ve made some awful choices in my life and hurt people I love. I still hurt people I love, albeit it unintentionally now. I’m selfish and slow. I’m an epic procrastinator and a good liar. I’m quick to judge and slow to forgive. I know the weight of my sin and I know that even though I have also done good things those don’t outweigh the bad.
I’m afraid of good things because I fear that in the balance I’ll have to pay for them with more bad things.
But what kind of God would I serve if that was true? It’s not that God thinks I “deserve” to be blessed. I cannot earn blessing. I cannot earn grace. He just gives it to me. He wants to give me good things. He wants to give me good things in abundance!
Do you do this too? Wait for the bad things to happen? Live in fear of the next phone call? Dread when things start going well because you just know they’ll soon end in disaster?
God wants to bless you! Not in the weird “prayer and prosper” way. When I say things I’m not talking about stuff. I’m not convinced God cares about what car we drive or where we live (unless those things are coming between us and Him or us and serving His people). But I do think God has beautiful experiences and moments for you. I think He has blessings of opportunities and redemption and healing in parts of your life you thought couldn’t be made whole again. I think the goodness of God is so much bigger than we can fathom or imagine.
This fear that I am not good enough for the good things God has for me is stealing my joy. Instead of excitement I have anxiety. Instead of anticipation I have sleeplessness.
And that has to stop.
I will not let fear rob me of joy. I will not let the lie that I am cursed and gone astray be the only voice I can hear. Because the truth is that I am redeemed. I was bought at a price and brought back into the family. I have the protection and favor of my heavenly Father. Yes, difficult and hard things will happen. But God will be moving in each and every one of those moments. He will make those broken things beautiful. He will make all broken things beautiful.
His goodness is here and is coming. I will give thanks and praise for the goodness of God, my Father. I will find joy in being His and find rest in trusting Him.