Just came back from a church retreat in Big Bear in which I almost didn’t go. So much plagues my mind of why I didn’t want to go, the anxiety of being up there, and the comfort of knowing that the people who have been watching over me were just a room away and most especially, God always being present even when my mind wouldn’t let me think so.
On the last day, last message from our guest speaker, we were asked to do an exercise called “Lectio Divina” and focus on a specific bible verse:
Galatians 5:22- 23 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.
The one thing that stood out to me, not exactly sure why, was self-control. At the end of the exercise, the words HOLD ON! came to my mind. If this is you, God, telling me to HOLD ON, I want to say… in all honesty… I don’t know if I can. I’m tired and exhausted and don’t want to be a broken record anymore. You give me things that you know I can handle but I’m not so sure about that. I don’t know if my faith is strong enough, I don’t know if me trusting you is as strong as I want it to be. I am tired of disappointing you. Disappointing myself. I don’t have that faith or trust in myself anymore. The last thing that I can HOLD ON to is that this would be the last trial that I go through and that you would be there to pick me up for the last time and continue to hold me and carry me through everything else that comes my way. Not that you haven’t. In so many times and so many ways have you always come to my rescue in my greatest hours of desperation. I know you are teaching me and molding me to the person that you know I could be. And in that, I can be all those things in the bible verse towards others, but maybe I haven’t been that way to myself at all. And maybe that is what you are teaching me now… You have taught me to love others and now you are teaching me to love myself in everything that I am, no matter how good or bad, that I myself are more than enough and I have to truly believe that. I think you and I both know that that will take some time for me to get there but I know that, God, you are with me every step of the way.
A psalm of David.
1 Lord, hear my prayer,
listen to my cry for mercy;
in your faithfulness and righteousness
come to my relief.
2 Do not bring your servant into judgment,
for no one living is righteous before you.
3 The enemy pursues me,
he crushes me to the ground;
he makes me dwell in the darkness
like those long dead.
4 So my spirit grows faint within me;
my heart within me is dismayed.
5 I remember the days of long ago;
I meditate on all your works
and consider what your hands have done.
6 I spread out my hands to you;
I thirst for you like a parched land.
7 Answer me quickly, Lord;
my spirit fails.
Do not hide your face from me
or I will be like those who go down to the pit.
8 Let the morning bring me word of your unfailing love,
for I have put my trust in you.
Show me the way I should go,
for to you I entrust my life.
9 Rescue me from my enemies, Lord,
for I hide myself in you.
10 Teach me to do your will,
for you are my God;
may your good Spirit
lead me on level ground.
11 For your name’s sake, Lord, preserve my life;
in your righteousness, bring me out of trouble.
12 In your unfailing love, silence my enemies;
destroy all my foes,
for I am your servant.