The Invitation of Insecurity

Life has been extra messy lately. Deadlines have left me feeling swamped and several personal situations have left me feeling overwhelmed. I want to be in about 5 places at one time. The mix of swamped and overwhelmed has left me feeling like I’m bleeding. I’m not talking about a tiny scrape. There is blood everywhere… oozing from wounds I cannot see. It’s on my clothes, in my hair and all over the walls. I’m trying to clean up the blood… but I can’t stop it. It’s a mess. The fact that I can’t stop the bleeding and I can’t clean up the blood has left me feeling broken. I feel inadequate and insecure.

I know the truth, this season will not last forever. I know it’s okay to not feel okay. I know God is big, and I know He can (and will) stop the bleeding. I know He can (and will) put my heart back together. I know my brokenness isn’t too big for Him. I think what is frustrating is that I have stood on this ground before and it makes me feel so insecure. I know who I am. I know who I was called to be. Yet, somehow the circumstances around me still make me feel like I am sinking. I feel like I should know better. I feel like I should have all the tools in my tool kit to not feel this way. It’s almost as if I feel insecure that I feel this broken.

I have been thinking a lot about insecurity lately. Websters dictionary defines “insecurity” in two ways. The first definition is “not firmly fixed; liable to give way or break”. If you know me at all, you know I am a bit sarcastic. So when I read that definition, I thought “yeah, you think!?” Then, I read the second definition “not confident or assured; uncertain and anxious”.  Tears immediately filled my eyes. If you have been following along here, you know that Dan and I choose the word “confident” as our 2019 word of the year. (Confidently Walking into 2019)

I do not believe there is any coincidence that I feel so insecure in a year we have choose to focus on confidence. So, I have been trying to dig deeper into insecurity. Trying to get to the root of it, and trying to work through why I feel so insecure. I believe insecurity is a form of fear. In general, I think sometimes insecurity (fear) can be a sign that we are vulnerable to some kind of danger. It can alert us that we need to take some kind of action.

So I have been trying to wrap my head around what danger this insecurity could be alerting me of. What kind of action do I need to take? I have come to the conclusion that insecurity is not only a warning; it’s also an invitation. When we feel insecure, God is inviting us to escape the danger of false beliefs about who we are, why we’re here, what we should do, and what we’re worth, and to find refuge in truth. Peaceful refuge in what He says about us.

In Matthew 14, Jesus feeds the 5,000. After this huge miracle, the disciples get into a boat and head out of the city while Jesus is dismissing the crowds. While the disciples were alone, a storm came and pushed the boat further away from the land. The next morning, the disciples were fearful when they saw Jesus walking towards them on the water. In verse 27-28 this happens:

Then Jesus said, “Be brave and don’t be afraid. I am here!” Peter shouted out, “Lord, if it’s really you, then have me join you on the water!” “Come and join me,” Jesus replied.

So Peter climbed out of the boat and started walking to Jesus, however Peter realized the waves were big and became insecure. He wasn’t confident he was safe, so he started to sink. Then something amazing happened. In verse 31 this happens:

 Jesus immediately stretched out his hand and lifted him up and said, “What little faith you have! Why would you let doubt win?”

So what am I trying to say here?

In a lot of ways, 2018 was a big year full of healing. (No Evidence of Disease) It was a hard year, but God did such big things. I can imagine what it must have been like to watch Jesus feed the the 5,000. I mean, five loaves of bread and seven fishes feed all of the people until they were full WITH LEFTOVERS. In the natural, that’s impossible. That’s how healing felt last year. I trusted Jesus could do it, but in the natural, it was impossible.

Yet again, God has proven the “impossible” isn’t impossible for Him. I have been symptom free for months. The “high” that comes after Jesus does something is amazing.  The fact that I have no vision changes, is a daily reminder. I am literally seeing the goodness of God every day. I imagine those disciples must have been laughing and dancing their way on to the boat after Jesus feed the 5,000. They too had literally just seen the goodness of God.

But then the storm hit. Out on the boat, when Jesus asked Peter to come to Him, Peter took a step and started to doubt. He started to sink. Friends, this wasn’t even 24 hours after seeing the goodness of God.

I can relate to Peter. So far this year, I have doubted. I have questioned. I have not understood. Instead of taking these doubts, questions and lack of understanding to Jesus. I have allowed myself to sink thinking “I should know better”. Lets go back to Matthew 14:31:

 Jesus immediately stretched out his hand and lifted him up and said, “What little faith you have! Why would you let doubt win?”

I used to read this scripture and assume that Jesus was reprimanding Peter. “What little faith” sounds like something a parent would say right before a consequence was given. However, recently I realized something. The first thing Jesus did was rescue Peter. He made sure Peter was completely and totally safe, before saying anything. I don’t think Jesus was saying “what little faith” as a reprimand with consequences. I think He was saying it in a disappointed, but loving way. Like a parent who has already told their child 100 times, but still continues to tell them. It’s like Jesus was saying “Don’t you know who you are?”

What I am learning about myself is that often times my insecurity is rooted in forgetting my identity. I don’t want to bring my brokenness to the Father, because the deep places of my heart feel like maybe I won’t be enough this time. Maybe this will be the time that He turns His back on me. This is the truth:

  • I am a child of God. – John 1:12
  • I am not a slave to sin. – Romans 6:6
  • Again, I am not a slave. I am a child of God. He calls me an heir! – Galatians 4:7
  • I am chosen, holy and blameless before God. – Ephesians 1:4
  • I am God’s workmanship created to produce good works. – Ephesians 2:10
  • Again, I am chosen. He loves me deeply. – 1 Thessalonians 1:4

When I started sharing today, I typed “I know the truth, this season will not last forever. I know it’s okay to not feel okay. I know God is big, and I know He can (and will) stop the bleeding. I know He can (and will) put my heart back together. I know my brokenness isn’t too big for Him.” Here’s the thing, we can know the truth, but what we do with the truth is what really matters. I can know the truth, but not actually take my brokenness to Him.

The truth is, His word promises He will not leave me.

  • He goes before me. He will be with me. He will not fail me or forsake me. – Deuteronomy 31:8
  • He says to not fear, because He is with me wherever I go.  – Joshua 1:9
  • He promises He is close the to the brokenhearted.  – Psalm 34:18

The truth is, it doesn’t matter what I do, I am still a child of God. Chosen, holy and blameless. He loves me deeply. These verses do not say, “I am close to you only when you have it together”. These verses say He is with me always. Period. He is with me when I am brokenhearted. Period. So what now?

2 Corinthians 12:10 says this in the Passion Translation:

So I’m not defeated by my weakness, but delighted! For when I feel my weakness and endure mistreatment—when I’m surrounded with troubles on every side and face persecution because of my love for Christ—I am made yet stronger. For my weakness becomes a portal to God’s power.

The world we live in today is full of darkness. It’s full of circumstances and situations that can and will make us insecure. However, we have a choice.  We can choose to hide in the dark, or we can choose to run to the truth. We can choose to simply know the truth, or we can choose to walk in the truth. We can choose to allow God to use our weakness as a portal for His power! What will you choose today?

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