1. I am overly independent.
I am an internal processor. I need to work through things in my head and my heart before I am willing to talk to other people about them. This is fine. Being an internal processor is not a bad thing. The problem is that then I never talk to other people about what is going on in my life. As soon as I’ve figured it out for myself I don’t see any point in bringing it up again.
I struggle with judgement. I was a very judgmental girl in high school so I think I convinced myself that everyone thinks the same way I did (and still sometimes do). This assumption turned it into a fear. I fear the opinions of other people, other human beings. Fearing judgement has caused me to rely even more on myself. I don’t want anyone to know I have problems, because then I’m not seen as “perfect.” So, I just keep everything to myself.
I am prideful. I think I can figure things out better by myself than with the advice of the wise men and women in my life. What a foolish thought. Ridiculous even. Along with this I also do not feel the need to surrender anything to God. I basically say, “no God, it’s cool, I can handle this one.” Pfft. Like I can do something better than the God of the UNIVERSE? Joke.
As a result of me internalizing everything I eventually become so overwhelmed that I have an anxiety attack and completely shut down to the point where no one can help me-mostly because they have no idea what is going on. In Matthew 13:22 Jesus says:
“As for what was sown among thorns, this is the one who hears the word, but the cares of the world and the deceitfulness of riches choke the word, and it proves unfruitful.”
Mmm…So, there’s that. There are thorns in my life. They are my selfishness, my pride, my worldly desires, my fear of man, my anxiety. These things are hindering my ability to bear the fruit of the Spirit. They are choking the ability of the Spirit to work through me. What do I do then? I need to get away from myself. I need to realize and remember who I am in Christ. That I am not these things. I am a child of God. I do not belong to myself and therefore should not be solely relying on myself, but on the Lord. The Lord gives us community to help us grow. I need to strive to overcome these barriers I have put up and become vulnerable. I need to surrender to be sanctified. I need to remember that this life is not about me.
“I planted, Apollos watered, but God gave the growth. So neither he who plants nor he who waters is anything, but only God who gives the growth. He who plants and he who waters are one, and each will receive wages according to his labor. For we are God’s fellow workers. you are God’s field, God’s building.” (1 Corinthians 3:6-9)
2. I lack faith in God’s promises.
My sin is rooted in this statement. I have talked about this before, and will probably talk about it again because it is clearly something I struggle with. Why am I overly independent? Because I don’t trust that by surrendering things to God that He truly has my best interests in mind. I get so frustrated with this characteristic of myself. I know what God’s promises are. I can tell them to other people. I can point to places in the Bible as proof of these promises. I know them and I believe they are true for all who follow Christ…except me. I don’t think I can be forgiven. I don’t believe that I am truly positionally perfect in the eyes of God. I don’t believe that His grace is for me. It makes me mad that I know these things and can’t have faith that they are for me too. I want to believe that they are for me.
“The saying is trustworthy and deserving of full acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am the foremost.” (1 Timothy 1:15)
“For in Christ Jesus you are all sons of God, through faith.” (Galatians 3:26)
“But God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” (Romans 5:8)
“And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.” (Romans 8:28)
“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation.” (2 Corinthians 5:17)
God’s promises are trustworthy. They deserve my acceptance. It is selfish of me to not have faith in them. I am a child of God. I am a sinner, but Jesus still died for me. God will work things in my life for my good and for his glory. I am a new creation, I am washed clean by the blood of Jesus. I can overcome my dependence on myself through Jesus, because Jesus is GOD.
My prayer is that I would believe this: God’s promises are true for me too. Joshua 23:14 says
“…not one word has failed of all the good things that the LORD your God promised concerning you. All have come to pass for you; not one of them has failed.”
God’s promises are for me. This song, these lyrics, are literally the exact cry of my heart.