I received an email from a person that is experiencing what many of us struggle with. This is my response. I am posting it because I pray that it encourages all of us as we journey through life as Christians.
If this post encourages one person our struggles are not in vain. If you feel led to do so, post a comment to encourage this person. They may see it and be blessed!
“I can totally relate to how you feel. When I was younger in Christ, I struggled just as you are describing. But I finally found the right church and good, sound teaching and the result was liberty. Every single has dealt (and deals with) the feelings you are experiencing.
Remember this Christian walk is a process. Hebrews 12:1 tells puts emphasis on “endurance”. That’s because there will be times you may “feel” like giving up. But stay on track! During those times, remind yourself that you are not alone and that all you have to do is endure. Sometimes, I think more emphasis should be on enduring than how we run the race. Sometimes, I crawl in the race, but I’m still in it. Other times, I sprint. The running is not as important as the hanging in there.Just because you have committed and recommitted your life to Christ doesn’t mean you will be perfect.
Take the pressure off yourself and allow God to do His perfect work in your life. Stay close to Him through reading His word and prayer. He will use those vehicles to change you and conform you into His image. Get into a good church. That’s an important part of the process. Sometimes, we want to rush that maturation process and try to do it ourselves and that’s when we [all] fall flat on our faces. 🙂 Allow Him to work in you, through you and in you. You stay close and you’ll soon find that the things you used to do don’t seem quite as appealing, that’s when the change will occur.
I have a personal example. For me it was a particular man. I couldn’t say away from him in my twenties. He was bad for me and I knew it, but I just wanted to be with him. Once I got serious about my walk with Christ, things began to change almost effortlessly. The closer I got to God, the stronger I became in His word. I soon saw him for what he was – a doggie in a Mercedes. God did what I could never do; he made him and the sin disgusting to me. Does that make sense?
Don’t worry about how you feel. Feeling is a sense that should be applied to earthly things, not spiritual things. We live by faith; it’s the cornerstone of the Christian walk (Read 2 Corinthians 5:7). Those times when you “feel” alone remind yourself of scriptures like Deut. 31:6 and Matthew 28:20. Feelings are not always true and reliable. You may feel alone, but the truth is that your Heavenly Father is right there with you, ahead of you, along side you and behind you – all at the same time. He’s always there, even when you don’t feel Him. It’s similar to oxygen, you can’t feel it, but it’s keeping you alive.
Finally, don’t give up. If you fall, get back up and begin again in grace and forgiveness. Stay in the Christian walk, God will blow your mind with victories and more testimonies than you could imagine. The key is to endure and stay in it.
I’ve prayed for you today and will continue to do so for a while.
Stay in touch.
P.S. I may post this as a blog entry WITH YOUR NAME REMOVED. 🙂 So many people feel the way you feel. So, hang in there.”