Modern feminism tells us women that we can/should have it all. We can have it all and there will be no consequence? That’s just not possible. For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. Basic science. If we have it ALL, we have to maintain it ALL.
We should have it all together, right? As soon as we get one step in the right direction of “I’ve got it all covered”, then circumstances happen that throw us into the pit.
You are not alone, dear one. It’s going to be okay. Really. Can I share three things that have helped me? Three things I need reminded of 0ften? I learned them from John 5, the story of the man at the pool of Bethesda and from Holley gerth (via her book You’re Going to be Okay). If you missed the first three articles, start here!
If you work through steps one and two, get up and take up your bedroll, step three becomes so much easier.
- Start Walking.
Each of us has a specific purpose. We do. We’re that special. Breathe. You have a purpose too. It’s not just all the other gals you follow on Instagram. You.
“Stress makes us short-sighted. Our bodies are wired in such a way that when our fight or flight system is triggered, we react. We’re not thinking noble thoughts about the meaning of life or world peace. We’re just trying to save ourselves…The trouble is, many of us live in chronic stress.” (Holley Gerth)
The truth is, you weren’t created to strive or survive, you were created to thrive. Each of us have, through life experience or through the desire of our heart, a unique purpose. We feel thing deeply about this purpose. For instance, when it comes to orphans, adoption, foster care and adoptive/foster parents, I park my purpose there. I spend my time there, working, praying, writing content, encouraging, offering ETC training and praying. God took my past, renewed it and transformed it into a purpose that I can walk in.
Friend Lori makes baby quilts and she is good at it. Maybe the desire and purpose for making each new Mom and baby feel celebrated comes out of her past (that’s her story to tell). What would happen if I gave up my purpose to make baby quilts? That’s a good thing, right? I may even learn how to make a decent one, after a decade or so. The whole time I would be walking in the wrong direction. I would feel angst in my soul as if I were fighting against myself. The angst would created unneeded stress and probably depression. When Jesus told the man at the pool to start walking, He meant in the path God had prepared for Him specifically, not to randomly walk. Pool guy went to the temple where he ran into Jesus, who said, “You look wonderful!’
One bit of warning. When you begin to walk in your God given purpose and you’re acting counter-culturally, the opposite direction of modern feminism, there will be naysayers. Jesus healed the pool guy on the Sabbath, a cultural no-no for Jews. Jesus responded to this with ,”My Father is working straight through, even on the Sabbath. So am I.”
It reminds me of many years ago when my mother wanted to open a food pantry in our community and the church leaders told her there was NO NEED. My mom and Bud had moved to the hills of WV because she had been born here. The hunger she had experienced as a child turned into a purpose to feed the hungry. She opened the pantry and it is still running twenty-one years after her death. Don’t let people talk you out of your purpose. Don’t be interested in crowd approval. Be content with God approval. Be set on the purpose God has given you. Walk in it.
“We are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God has prepared in advance for us to do.” Ephesians 2:10
“When Life comes along and slaps us silly, it can feel as if God’s purpose for us has now been cancelled. But nothing can stop His purpose for us….just because your circumstances are hard doesn’t mean God’s purpose for you has changed.” (Holley Gerth)
Even if you feel as if you are the ONLY one doing what you are doing and you KNOW God led you to do it, DO IT ANYWAY. If you tell a group of friends that you are ________________ and aren’t going to ________________________ and they try to redirect you, listen to your purpose, not theirs. It’s okay to act counter culturally. Jesus did.
Do you want to be well? Do you want to be satisfied in your soul? Get up. Stop believing the lies. Your circumstances are not a measure of your worth. You are infinitely loved. You are chosen. Take up your bedroll. Picking up your bedroll is taking responsibility for yourself and your choices. Get off the treadmill of what is expected and run the race at a meaningful and profitable pace. Ask yourself, what sort of fruit does this activity produce? Start walking. You were made for a purpose and actually, mini, many purposes. Your purpose may change with the seasons of your life. Just remember to walk in the path of your purpose, not someone else’s.
The last thing Jesus said to the healed pool guy was, “Don’t return to a sinning life or something worse may happen.” In other words, don’t go back to the habits or patterns of thinking and living that keep you beside the pool instead of in it. The living water is available to you. The Word renews your mind and transforms your thinking. Take the time to feed yourself whatever is true.
“Come to Me.. be with Me. All you who are weary and beat up by this life. Who have lost faith in religion. Who’ve lost faith in yourself. Find it in Me. And as you do, you will find rest and peace and purpose for your soul,”