Today; I found myself having a short message conversation with a beautiful friend & Woman of God (such a brave & honest soul) our topic……STRUGGLES.
Struggles = Religious TABOO in a lot of churches & amongst fellow Christians. *Yes, I said it* It’s like no one wants to discuss the “nitty gritty” in fear of looking “less religious”. We've been made to believe in a lot of cases that it's unacceptable to fall below the line at times. Yet, we are all HUMAN & we ALL have STRUGGLES & sin in our lives. If there is any individual without struggle or sin; please allow me to buy you a cup of coffee, because I think I’d really like to hear what you have to say & what your strategy is. BUT, the reality of it is THIS; we ALL struggle, we ALL need forgiveness, we all need to feel accepted and we should be more accepting of people rather than taking the stand of J-U-D-G-E-M-E-N-T; making individuals feel like they need to hide. No one is better than anyone else; Christian or Non-Christian, and how are we ever going to point Non-Christians to the ways of being righteous if we cannot take a step back to reflect that our CURRENT & past struggles are part of ministering to others. I am talking young & old; pretending like we don’t struggle & keeping those struggles from others in fear is like putting a hairspray can close to an open flame & expecting it to remain in-tact & not explode, it will destroy you. God didn't intend for us to hide; we are made for support & encouragement of others. "I also tell you this: If two of you agree here on earth concerning anything you ask, my Father in heaven will do it for you” Matthew 18:19
As Christians; we are supposed to accept and love everyone (even if we don't always agree), to encourage others coming to Christ. To TRULY understand someone is to accept them for exactly who they are & not who they will potentially become once they’ve found God or "fighting the good fight" once they've made that commitment to Christ. If you can relate (regardless if you are a Christian with the same struggle as a NON-Christian), share your testimony. Share your heart, be REAL, be RAW……because the outside is not looking in to see perfect; they want to see real people with real problems; that we rely on God ALONE for strength. That HE is the one who changes us & creates purity within us. Without Him we are NOTHING & that really IS the point. Those that have a true relationship with Jesus know where to run when situations get tough, and you are struggling to be everything Christ has called you to be; doesn’t mean that God loves you any less, and it certainly doesn’t mean you are less of a Christian or person for being human.
I committed my life to Christ when I was 14 at a youth event called “Acquire of the Fire” ; stationed at the Silverdome in Pontiac, Michigan. I came to know about Jesus & how He would accept me in all my craziness through my youth leaders that didn’t hold back; they didn’t lie or hide, they shared their very REAL struggles with me. I was a big ball of a “sinning mess” & I needed to know that I wasn’t alone, they changed my life with their unhindered testimonies.
There isn’t a single sin or struggle that you have, that someone else doesn’t have or hasn’t had. YOU ARE NOT ALONE. Don’t keep it to yourself, reach out; surround yourself with support, and know that it is never right for you to feel condemned; especially not in Christ ~“Therefore, there is no condemnation for those in Christ Jesus” Romans 8:1~ If God says it, IT’S TRUE.
This could mean ANYTHING: Pornography, sex, alcohol, drugs, gambling, foul language; the list goes on & on, and we know what God’s word says. Part of encouraging others is sharing, supporting, accepting & understanding. We should always point each other to Christ, but not without also loving on others the way that God loves us: UNCONDITIONALLY.
I’m always going to be real, raw, honest, transparent; because that is the only way that I can be, and it’s the way that GOD has created me to be. I am a Woman of God; who loves Jesus with all my mind, heart & soul……but this doesn’t excuse me from the struggles of this world; I just know where to run for my true strength. I am not perfect, I will NEVER claim to be. I struggle, but my hope is in Christ alone; He makes me new…….He loves me for ME & He loves you for YOU too. Period. I'm am right there with all of you.