Janet felt as if her heart had been ripped out – again. How many times was she going to have to try and succeed at… life? It seemed like every time she turned around, there was another failure looming... larger than the pink elephant that sat in the living room when she was growing up. Nobody talked about the real problems in her home.
Because of the home life Janet had had, her confidence wilted as quickly as spinach did when it hit the hot pan. She tried praying and reading her Bible, but lately it just seemed like a duty without substance. Her relationship with God felt flat.
Janet sighed deeply, pulling out her journal. Maybe if she wrote out what she was feeling it would help. It had in the past, and she hadn’t written for a long time.
Well, here I am, not really knowing why I’m bothering. I guess I hope it will help. My mind is a swirl of thoughts and my emotions won’t settle down to any particular one. Why does life have to be so hard?
I really thought I had found THE GUY this time. He was kind, caring and sooo sweet. I felt like his heart really wanted to know mine. How could I have let my hopes soar like that? It’s never turned out before, so why should this time be any different? EVERY time I lean on a guy – boom! He gets torn away from me. This time it hurts worse than all the other times, because Timothy was DIFFERENT. My heart feels like a shredded mess.
Timothy was really helping to boost my confidence in who I am as a person. God why did you have to take him from me? I was – oh God! I was falling in LOVE with him. And this time, this time, God, it was REAL! You’re cruel to have done this to me. Is it so wrong to be depending on someone who was finally helping me find some confidence in my life?!
Hot tears ran down Janet’s cheeks. “God you’re not fair! Please help me! I know I’m upset right now, and I’m angry with you but I need you!” She picked up her journal again, and just sat with it clasped to her chest, waiting. She was amazed at the calmness she suddenly felt. She knew that God had heard her plea for help, that He was going to show her something profound as sure as she knew that the sky was blue.
Janet grabbed her Bible from the nightstand and flipped through the pages. She knew with a confidence she’d never felt before that God was guiding her, leading her in a quest for truth. She was desperate for truth. She had lived too long under the shadow of a guilt she shouldn’t have carried. She had always felt that her parents’ problems with drugs and alcohol were her fault.
For years she had sought relationships with guys that would heal her wounded heart, build her confidence, and give her someone to lean on. She had accepted Christ at a church camp one year and she knew that Jesus loved her, but she didn’t know what it meant to have a vital relationship with Him. She knew she was on the cusp of knowing though. God was with her, drawing her by His Holy Spirit.
She found the passage that had popped into her head. “So do not throw away your confidence; it will be richly reward. You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God, you will receive what he has promised.” (i)
God I have been looking in the wrong places for confidence haven’t I? You want my confidence to be in YOU and you don’t want me to throw that away. By my seeking confidence in guys, I was throwing away my confidence in you. Oh God, forgive me. Help me to seek you always. I want to learn what it means to be confident in you and to walk with you always by my side.
Janet put aside her journal, sighing contentedly. She knew this was just the beginning of the kind of relationship she had longed for and previously sought in all the wrong places. She prayed that she would be able to keep her eyes on Jesus – where she would find the way to be truly confident.
(i) Hebrews 10:35
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