I think and feel deeply. More so than the average “Jane”. As an INFJ, I’m an inch wide and a mile deep, and I like that about myself. I genuinely care about things and am a strong empathizer. All of which can be used for so much good, however, they can also bring damaging toxicity.
I’m also a dweller. I mull. I over-analyze everything and attach strong emotions to things. And on a bad day, I subconsciously obsess on the lies I have deemed true in my mind. On account of that, I carry a lot of cognitive weight around. And I know this is not unique simply to me.
We all carry baggage. We each have our own closet full of skeletons. And unfortunately my deep thinking/feeling side can get a little carried away mulling over the skeleton rave I’m throwing alongside my linens and board games. And because of my obsession of analytics and previous unhealthy emotional attachment to my failures, a few years ago I quickly became depressed and shameful. Ever been there?
It was definitely the lowest point in my life. Ever been there? I felt alone, and shameful, and avoided God. Ever been there? It took a lot of time and prayer and medication to get me out of the hole I dug, but it wasn’t until I started preaching Truths to myself, that real change began to occur.
It was definitely the lowest point in my life.
Ever been there?
I had to force myself to think on things that are True. It was a daily choice and one that I had to remind myself to make each morning. Because of the habit I had made, it took a lot of time, energy, and prayer to transform those old habits, into the daily renewal of my mind.
So for those of you who carry the weight of shame and guilt (the products of my skeletons), you are not alone. But, there will come a time when you will have to decide for yourself to choose to think differently. You can pray all you want for God to change your thoughts but at the end of the day, the effort is on you. God is not a genie who will grant your wishes while you sit on your mat and zip around the palace. God will not do your work for you, but He will give you the strength you need to get through it. You have to get your hands dirty, and you have to change your behavior. You will have to humble yourselves in front of the King of Kings and accept His grace and mercy, knowing you don’t deserve an ounce, but desperately need an ocean. You will thank God everyday for sparing His wrath from you, because His mercies are new every morning. And He is faithful.
You can pray all you want for God to change your thoughts
but at the end of the day, the effort is on you.
In the midst of my mulling I wrote the following based on the scriptures I was memorizing at the time. I hid this in my heart and meditated on it everyday. And to this day, I continue to repeat it to myself for the sake of sanity, and grace. And by God’s grace alone, now I believe it.
Today, God is calling me to believe there is no condemnation for those who are in Christ, to remind myself there is nothing that I have done, or that has been done to me, that God cannot redeem, to accept forgiveness from God and for myself, to be free from the bondage of guilt and shame, to remember my identity is not marked by my past or future, but lies in He who is righteous, and to live in the fullness of His gracious, merciful, abundant, and unconditional love for me.
humble yourselves in front of the King of Kings and accept His grace and mercy,
knowing you don’t deserve an ounce,
but desperately need an ocean.
My prayer for the reader who sits with tears of resonation, is that one day you will believe the Truth that you have been redeemed. Doesn’t matter what you’ve done, or what has been done to you – you have been freed from those chains. And although we will never understand (on this side of Glory) the lavishing gift of Christ’s life for our sin – salvation – you will turn your self-loathing into a joyful life celebrating freedom from bondage. Throw the skeletons away. Today, what is God calling you to believe?
This article has been republished from SelfTalktheGospel.com, with permission.