I keep fighting voices in my mind that say I’m not enough. But those are lies, because God says I am chosen, I am loved, I am strong, I am His and He is mine and knowing that is enough.
‘You Say’ by Lauren Daigle.
You say I am…
For a long time, I struggled to believe that people could even like me, let alone love me. I knew that God loved me but that felt kind of like when your mum says you look like good and it’s like ‘well you have to say that’. Of course, God HAS to love me because I am his child and He loves everyone. It felt quite empty. But it’s not that God ‘has’ to love you, He actually CHOOSES too, and His love isn’t normal. It is extraordinary. He can love every single person in a different, unique and personal way! He sees everything you are and everything you will be and loves you regardless of how you see yourself. I see people around me putting themselves down and it pains me because I just want to scream at them to make them realise how stunning they are, that’s how God feels about all of us. When we don’t feel enough He is there shaking us with His love!
‘See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are!’ - 1 John 3v1
When you are battling with your identity it’s so easy to fall into the trap of feeling weak. Feeling like you have no energy, not even enough to hold onto a smile throughout the day. Like one comment or one thought could cause you to break. But God promises strength. He promises to be our crutch when we don’t have the energy to take another step. And that support will always be within reaching distance.
'The joy of the Lord is my strength' - Nehemiah 8v10
There are so many different methods I use to remind me of the joy God has given me, above the pain I am feeling:
- Call a friend: I message, and call people close to me. Tell them how I’m feeling, what I’m struggling with and then we either pray or just move on and talk about something else (usually ending with me laughing a lot!). Sometimes I just need to air it and speak it out and other times I need more support through their encouraging words and truth.
- Daily thankful list. At one point I wrote 25 things a day for 40 days (1000 things!) that I was thankful for. It is so great to just remind yourself that you have food, you have a comfy pillow, water and Netflix! There are good things going on around you every day.
- I will look up in the bible app words relating (or opposite) to my emotions – chosen, afraid, broken, beautiful, joy. And I will then scroll through the bible verses and sometimes even choose a bible plan to start. It’s essential to speak God’s view of you over your life.
- I will write letters to God about how I’m feeling. Get it all out and usually this will turn into God confirming why He loves me.
BTW – He never gets bored of telling you how much you mean to Him, why He loves you and who He created you to be. So, don’t be afraid to keep asking Him!!
‘I can do all things through him who gives me strength’ - Philippians 4v13
It is really easy to think that you have to do everything on your own. That you have to deal with your emotions and face your battles solo. But that’s soo far from the truth! Strength isn’t how much you can do without anyone, it’s how far you can go when you are encouraged and supported by God and everyone around you! Take ‘I’m a celebrity get me out of here’; they face daily challenges and you as the spectator/team mates are watching and cheering them on, praising them for their courage and tenacity in getting through a task! But there is also then times when they are out of their depth and just can’t finish on their own and have to use the dreaded phrase ‘get me out of here’. Help immediately comes to them. God is both the spectator and the support. He is there willing us to do the task set before us, but also ready and equipped to rescue us the moment we call on His name because we just can’t anymore. And then He is also like Ant and Dec at the end, ready to celebrate the victory but also there to embrace you when you feel disappointed and afraid. We aren’t built to do life on our own, we are built for community with those around us and with the holy spirit, living in us, as our greatest helper.
‘Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand’ - Isaiah 41v10
God has chosen you. He has chosen me. He has chosen your neighbour, your teacher and your best friend. We all belong in His family and it is knowing that, knowing that we are a part of much more than just ourselves and this current life on earth that keeps me going more than anything else. It is not the school I went to, the specific brands of clothing or make-up I wear, not the clubs I attend or the people I watch on YouTube who determine my identity. My Identity is found in God calling me His.
‘Even when I can’t see it your working, even when I can’t feel it your working, you never stop working’ – Way Maker
God is always working in our lives, He is always there speaking truth and life and calling us closer to Him.