[dropcap1]Q:[/dropcap1] Jake, when you feel at your lowest, what do you do to bring yourself back up?
When I am at my lowest, chances are I’ve done something stupid. It’s because of my own personal expectations or standards of “Who Jake is” or “Who I’m supposed to be” that I end up whipping myself on the back and shaming myself with the guilt of having not done the “right” thing. Most of the times I reach a low in life because I can’t comprehend what is really happening around me. I make a mistake and because of that mistake I want to correct myself but a lot of times I do that by shaming myself. If I were to really take a step back and analyze what I did and why I did it and where it comes from I could then get a better grasp on what needs to happen in order to fix the issue.
I’ve learned that I am a broken dude; a messed up one that doesn’t have the solutions to the problems that are within the walls of my own heart. We as people are reactors and the reasons we do things all come because of something we’ve seen, done, or heard around us; we are a product of our surroundings. I think this is why God speaks about idolatry so much as a sin but not just a sin against Him but also against ourselves.
For example: You were raised by an alcoholic father? Statistics and studies from psychologists and researchers show there’s a good probability that you’ll be prone for alcoholism. Were you raised in a very argumentative home, one with yelling and screaming? If your parents lacked grace and forgiveness for one another chances are you’ll end up doing the same with your significant other because you learned that growing up.
When we do these things we get angry with ourselves because we are doing exactly what we don’t wish to do. Funny enough, our friend Paul in the Bible has the exact same issue as he explains in Romans 7:15 that “I don’t really understand myself, for I want to do what is right, but I don’t do it. Instead, I do what I hate.” So we have it in us to want what is pure, right, and good. Yet just like Paul we struggle and do the things we don’t wish to do and so we end up suffering by feeling ashamed of what we’ve “become”. When I get to this point, when I’m thinking to myself “Damn it Jake, you’ve done it again.” I know that I need to go to my faith.
I go to the God that has created me, the One that I know isn’t full of pride, resentment, selfishness and that I need to ask Him for forgiveness. I’ve come to the understanding that if I believe that Jesus died on the cross and all of my sins are washed away then I am blameless through the eyes of God because of my faith in Christ. This shows me that I should not beat myself up because if I do then I am just undermining the cross. I’m basically saying that His sacrifice on the cross wasn’t strong enough to cover the faults and sins in my life and that I must reprimand myself for my sins. So in a sense when I beat myself up I am contradicting my own belief system. What does that make me do?
It makes me see God with awe of what He has done and brings me yet again closer to Him because of how huge His love is for me. It makes me want to follow Him even further and deeper in building that relationship. Once again I can’t even correct my wrongs or redeem myself from what I’ve done. God does it and it is His grace that carries me through the hard times and His mercy and everlasting redemption that drags me through even the worst of times. He did what no one else could have done by dying for my sins and He is still beside me wanting me just as much as He did before I do something stupid.
So, to answer your question, when I am at my lowest I remind myself of the greatness of God and what He has done to finish my sin. I have the gift of Christ and because of that I am forgiven and am not my own to judge or redeem. I have to ask for forgiveness and for His help to heal me, guide my heart, strengthen my mind, give me wisdom and grace to change my mind on how I view myself and the situation, and how to move forward in His grace and wisdom rather than relying on my own. Remember Proverbs 3:5 “Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding.”
I hope this answers your question. Thanks for sending it into Heart Support and God bless you.