Yea, though I walk through the valley

I’m not good at vulnerable. I’m not good at trust. I’m not good at grace. I’m not good at love.

I have to learn to be vulnerable, to trust. God has surrounded me by some amazing women who love Him, who just love life and live. I find myself trying to keep my emotions, my fears, my anxieties, my story supressed because I don’t want to burden anyone with what is going on in my head. I tend to make a joke out of the things that bother me the most because, for me, it’s easier to laugh off the ugly than confront it and find resolution. I know that’s not logical…but it’s the way that I am wired currently wired. I’ve realized, again, that I have to change that wiring. I have to learn to be vulnerable with my friends, those women that God has put into my life, and I have to talk to them. I have to allow them to help me through my rough patches. I’ve been more than willing to do that for them. And, I’m finding out, that they are more than willing to do that for me. But…I have to ask, to let them know, the express my need. Scary, but it’s what I have to do.

I have a problem with grace. I have difficulty extending it sometimes, and I always have difficulty accepting it. If I do something wrong, I expect retribution. If I get off the hook, so to speak, I put myself on my own hook and keep poking at myself until I am ailing. I understand I am ailing of my own choosing. When I was a kid, my mother was afraid to punish me because she knew I was already punishing myself. I need to learn to forgive myself. I need to learn to extend grace to myself. If I don’t forgive myself and extend grace to myself, I am putting myself in a higher place than God. If God sent Jesus to die on the cross for my sins, why am I continually crucifying myself?

I have a problem accepting love, mainly because I have a problem loving myself. I don’t generally value myself over others. This may seem like a good thing, but in my case, it’s a cancer. It’s not humility, it’s self-loathing. The Bible says that we are to love our neighbor as ourselves. If I don’t love myself, how then can I love my neighbor? I have to learn to look myself in the mirror and see myself as God sees me. God created me in His image, so that means that in me, there is a piece of Him. My name is engraved on the palm of His hands. I was fearfully and wonderfully made. He is my Lover and I am His. I know all of these things in my head. Now I have to know them in my heart, in the depth of my being.

I’ve been walking through the valley of the shadow of death as of late. The locusts are fat. This is the promise onto which I am holding, from Psalm 23:

5 You prepare a table before me
in the presence of my enemies.
You anoint my head with oil;
my cup overflows.

6 Surely goodness and love will follow me
all the days of my life,
and I will dwell in the house of the LORD



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