“Chin up, sweet friend. May you model self-compassion when in pain, in pleasure, and in process. You are so necessary.”
These were first my words to myself and then to my social media audience on May of last year. I was hurting, and working really hard to remind myself to practice self-compassion in the process. Asking myself, “What would I say to someone else in this same situation?”
In that moment, I needed to be reminded that pain is a NORMAL part of this process called life. I also needed to be reminded that avoiding hard truths in an effort to avoid pain would only cause greater pain down the line. I needed to hear that I would indeed experience pleasure and happiness again. I needed to be reminded that I would be okay and that God has not forgotten me nor does He hold grudges. Lastly, I needed to be reminded of why I was necessary. Join me in exploring a few reasons we are necessary...
There is no other you. While you may not see it now, you contribute to the world something that NO ONE else can - YOU. There is something unique about your DNA. You were divinely crafted and especially thought of before your conception. Your very being is valuable. You're so wonderfully complex. You are a reflection of God's marvelous workmanship. (Psalm 139:14)
You and your gifts are a gift to others. Something I struggled with was sitting on my gifts because “So many other people are doing the same thing.” While it may be true that there are others just as talented as you, your reach and impact are DIFFERENT. Your voice and words are more meaningful to those that you are called to touch. I’ll ask you one meaningful question that challenged my perspective: Are your gifts reserved for you or those you’re called to serve?
You’re not done. There was a time in my life where I was certain I was DONE. When my mom passed away, I did not see how God could use the shell of me that was left. I've shared before, “I was certain that I’d become a shell of a person after my mom passed away. I just knew that I would have no capacity for any more pain, people, or even purpose.” Friend, I was wrong. My commitment to keep living pulled SO MUCH out of me that I never knew was inside of me. I’m so glad God chose not to be done with me when I thought I was done with Him.
You’re still waiting. “Farmers who wait for perfect weather never plant. If they watch every cloud, they never harvest." (Ecclesiastes 11:4) I sense that many of you are waiting for the perfect circumstances, to guarantee you won’t fail/get hurt, or for when you can guarantee the outcome. Stop that. If we were supposed to have all the answers before we walked in our purpose, we would not need our faith. But what if I fail? What if I get hurt? What if it doesn’t work out? What if people leave me? How can I guarantee my safety? “Fearing people is a dangerous trap, but trusting the Lord means safety.” (Proverbs 29:25)
Full transparency - I sometimes find myself not wanting to include “too many scriptures” in my writing as not to deter anyone from further reading. However, we’ll “read” tea, memes, captions, and statuses all day on social media. Aht-aht. May we not find ourselves being more influenced by memes on social media than our Daily Bread. If you’re feeling especially low, I encourage you to tune out the noise online and tune into the Encourager. Allow the truth of God’s Word to remind you even further why you’re so necessary. I hope you're encouraged today.
Always with love,