*Warning. This might be a gut punch. But this is exactly what I wish someone had told me sooner*
I used to live in a victimhood mentality. I felt like the whole world was out to get me, including my responsibilities at home with my family. Everything around me just seemed like too much. The weight of the world seemed unbearable at times. My circumstances always caused me to question why it was so unfair that things were so hard and if God was really using any of it for my good or his glory.
My life was a burden to me.
My circumstances were a burden to me.
My family was a burden to me.
Everything and everyone else was the problem, but I wasn’t.
But that was just the things. *I* was the problem. I was the one feeling sorry for myself. I was the one making excuses. I was the one making others around me feel like the burdens, that they so very clearly weren’t. I was the one blaming God, instead of truly turning to him. I wanted all the comfort without all the hard work.
I was the problem.
But then one day, something happened. It wasn’t this massive come to Jesus moment, and it certainly wasn’t filled with bells and whistles. It was me standing over the sink full of dishes and the kids screaming in the background, and after months, even years of prayer, that I finally asked God to help me see the so called “burdens” all around me and see them as good.
As something purposeful.
As something that would light a fire in my spirit to do good for and because of them.
As something fruitful.
As something that would spur me forward.
As something that would give me small, intentional ways to glorify him with my attitude and service.
As something that could be beautiful.
And those small prayers over all that time lead up to a choice to take my life back. To see the people and the things that I had in front of me as something I could steward well for his glory and for generations to come. To leave a legacy for our kids. To tap into the pieces of my soul that felt so weary for so long.
“God, help me see all of this as your good and actually act like it.”
That day at the kitchen sink has been repeated over and over again so many days since then. Begging God to help me to see what I have in front of me and to see it as an opportunity for his goodness to be at work. As I scrubbed the dishes and made the beds and folded the laundry. As I took time to learn how to discipline my children differently, and how I took the time to discipline my body differently to get healthy. As I made meals for others in need and fed hungry teenagers at youth group and had hard conversations with my husband. How I’ve learned to manage everyday physical pain and work through what it means to have a broken body. Even through all the tears and hard days, it’s all been SO GOOD.
But that goodness came with submission to Christ and what he called me to do. To do things cheerfully and with intention and purpose. To scale back in all the other areas of my life and truly focus on the ones that matter to the heart of the Father. And you guys, it’s so good to see God’s goodness. It’s so good to not live in a victimhood mentality and see my family and my responsibilities as a blessing and not a burden.
It’s so good to be free from that bondage. Bondage, that I’m embarrassed to say, held me captive for so long. It was so good to recognize that I was the problem. Because once I did, there was also freedom for Holy change.
Sweet friend, the things set before you, even the hard things, are God’s goodness to you if only you can get over yourself and surrender to him. Let that pride of victimhood go and step into the light of all he has for you. He will be faithful to give you wisdom how to walk through them, grace when you mess things up, and so much strength along the way as you reclaim life for your good and his glory.
I promise, goodness is waiting for you. You just have to surrender your pride and comfort to him. It’s better on the other side.