You Say – Lauren Daigle

This song has been on my heart and mind ever since it came out. It’s one of those songs that truly hit home for me. A song that I can relate to.

Enjoy

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Expectations

EXPECTATIONS

So, I’ve run into somewhat of a problem, well more of a roadblock per say. You see I had goals set for myself, and with great determination, I was hopeful for what was ahead of me. Referring back to my previous blog (Human Error) I had mentioned taking baby steps, well apparently my mind/heart doesn’t even know what that means. Baby steps? Little by little of course is how some would describe it or taking things day by day may be another way of putting it. I, however, wanted to just jump right in and expect to see results instantly, which is the problem with me. If I do something then I’m going to expect something, if I make the right decisions then instantly I assume that makes me a better person. Actions mean nothing if my heart isn’t fully into it, and honestly, I feel like I’ve been forcing myself to be this person I’m not. I expect better of myself, yet I’m only willing to give 5% and expect the outcome to be a 100%.

Society expects us to act a certain way, our workplaces expect us to be professional, our family expects us to be the best version ourselves, the churches we attend expect us to be loving and forgiving. Yet at the same time I expect myself to be everything that I’m called to be, and still meet the expectations of others when honestly, I can’t please everyone.

EXPECTATIONS: A strong belief that something will happen or be the case in the future.

When I was a teenager I wanted to be a psychologist, I had plans on going to college. Upon submitting an essay to the college, after scheduling a tour of the campus, and after a 4-hour test, they rejected me. That was the worst day I had ever experienced, I remember opening the letter and reading the first couple of words. I laid down the letter and sobbed, all because reality didn’t meet my expectations. My dreams of becoming a psychologist went out the window and got ran over by a semi, leaving me with the feeling of hopelessness and disappointment within myself. I remember praying on it, praying that they would accept me into their college and live a life that I had been dreaming of.

Eventually, I had moved on, I decided to go to school for business at a technical college. Which I ended up dropping out of because it just wasn’t what I expected (ha! See what I did there?). If you think about it, expectation-hope-fear all have something in common. The feelings between the three are mutual in my opinion. Maybe I’m expecting too much of myself to become someone that I’m not, why would I do that? Because I anticipated being a better person, a better friend, a better Sunday School Teacher, a better wife.  

I just wanted to be a better version of the person I was last year. I struggled because I thought I could do it all on my own. Entering the new year was turning the page, beginning the next chapter, beginning a new journey…or so I thought. I knew this wasn’t going to be easy, I knew I was going to struggle, I knew that my determination would soon turn into self-doubt.

That’s my problem, I know before ever moving my own feet. And it’s only January 9th, 2019.

Pushing Forward

I’ve been feeling it. Fear and doubt has crept up on me, leaning on the back of my shoulder hoping I’ll turn around and notice it. I carry this confidence, I have these dreams, I have plans for this year that will hopefully help me crawl out of my shell. A part of me me wants to doubt, and another part of me wants to look forward. I welcomed the new year with good anticipations, but I look forward and all I want to do is look back and see why I failed the first time. I’m aware that this won’t be easy, and I don’t expect everything that I want to happen overnight.

You would think that the beginning of each new year would be easy, but it’s not, especially if you’ve been here before only to realize you do “good” for a couple of weeks then all of a sudden you fall off track. Your purpose in the beginning is strong, your intentions are in the right place, your attitude is positive, and somewhere down the road you loose sight of it all. The question is why and how? How do we go from giving God our lives to taking it back once something happens. In the begining of the new year we make promises, we make goals for ourselves to reach by a certain point. We tell God that this year will be different, that your relationship with Him will be different. Again, we have good intentions but we always seem to go back to the very thing(s) that holds us back. For me it is fear, for some it may be totally something different. How can I push forward if my attention is set on fear of failure, fear if disappointment, fear of uncertainty?

The more I write and blog this, the more it helps me realize that I myself am aware of my own thoughts and fears. There is one thing that I haven’t mentioned, one thing that would most certainly help me, and that is prayer. Here’s the thing, I woke up this morning with the intentions of switching up my morning rountine before heading to work. Didn’t happen. Instead I woke up late, laid in bed and staired at my ceiling and thought “I really need to learn self-discipline”. Prayer, fasting, and self-discipline, could possibly be the key ingredients to pushing forward. If I want to see any progress at all in my life and within myself, then I really need to learn to trust and lean on God.

This could go really good, or really bad.

Reflection of 2018

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Wow! I survived, that’s for sure. However, this year was a year that I battled with myself and came to realize that if I just let God be God, I wouldn’t have to fight so hard. I experienced the darkest of days, I’ve gotten lost in my own world that I created, a world that I thought was keeping me safe this whole entire time. 2018 was a year that I learned soo much about myself, things that I didn’t even know that only my husband noticed. I’ve learned how complicated I can be, I’ve learned how easily angered I was, I’ve learned how harsh I can really be on myself, and I’ve learned how easy it is to fall away from God. As much as I love the passage in John 3:30 and as much as I love reading that scripture, I was still very full of myself. This year was rough indeed, but not as rough as others I’m sure…but I realized that I need to start taking better care of myself. I questioned myself over and over “How did I get here? Why am I here? Why am I going through this?”.

Another thing that I learned, was to be brutally honest with myself. To look at myself, my life, and how I treated those around me. I fell away from writing because I was being very hypocritical, and I was contradicting myself a lot. Eventually I stopped because it wasn’t fair, and my heart wasn’t fully into it. There was so much I was feeling, so much that was going through my head that it broke me, and I didn’t know how to deal with myself. I blamed myself for a lot of things, things that I could’ve easily controlled instead I allowed it to control me. 2018 was a year of searching for myself, but if I knew how lost I would become then I probably would’ve just pushed forward and kept living a life that wasn’t me.

I’ve also learned to accept that I need help at times, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. I’ve learned to embrace and understand that depression is very much real, and it can come and go in many different forms. It can happen to people who live a good life, who come from a good family, and who are loved all around. There’s so much fear in asking for help, we don’t feel the need to burden others with our problems, so we keep our mouths shut and suppress our emotions.

So, what have I learned? That God loves me despite how messed up I am. He chooses me every day even though I know within I will fail Him, but I also know that He will still be there to cover me with his grace and mercy. It’s a learning process and not an excuse to keep going back to the things that are no good for me, things that satisfy but only for a little while. I’ve learned that it’s not worth going back to that same dark place time and time again, I’ve learned that if I want to be happy and see change within my life. I must stop putting myself down all the time, I must stop giving the devil credit for when I do fall and all else fails. There’s a lot that I’ve learned, and I’ll never stop learning. This year was just another journey, and 2019 will be another journey.

 One thing I know for certain, one thing that remains the same, is that I still love God with a full heart. My faith/belief has not changed from what I know is true.

Human Error

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How did it come to this? Why am I here? Why can’t I ever get it right the first time? Why do I continue to doubt myself? Why do I give so much power to that little voice in the back of my head?

Our minds are constantly going, flooded with questions and sometimes self-doubt. For those who think good thoughts, good for you. I’m not quite there yet, I’m still trying to sort myself out for the millionth time. As if I’m trying to diagnose the problem when clearly, I know what the problem is. Which probably explains why I’m so ignorant and selfish, I would rather try and fix myself rather than surrender and allow God to work on me. I get in the way of what Gods purpose is for me and end up taking a different route. A route that I believe will benefit me in the long run, but it only leads to self-destruction. So here I am once again, in the middle of the sea surviving to stay afloat. I am what I am, and as much as I want to change, in my eyes, it’s just not in the cards for me. If you were to ask me, what is it that I fear the most? “Myself” would be my answer, because I know that I am my own worst enemy. I can be very hard on myself, especially when I’m at a point in my life where I’m ready to commit to change only to tell myself “This is temporary Maria, tomorrow you will be back down in that dark hole of yours”. Indeed, it’s as if my mind can tell the future, or maybe I just give it too much credit.

You and I have been here before, we’re too familiar with the feeling of failure. We allow fear to creep in and corrupt the confidence that we can change, only to feel that this will never work and that we’ll fail once again. The expectations that we once set for ourselves have become undesirable, all because we’ve opened the door to fear, and self-doubt. Maybe I’m just speaking for myself here, but I’ve known/seen people in this dark place. It’s just some don’t know how to describe it, or they just don’t want to say anything. To know the truth is one thing, but to hear it out loud is a whole other world for some.

I wish I could tell you how you can easily turn your life around, or how you can climb out of that rut that you’re in. But if all I did was feed you scripture and tell you that if you just prayed that everything will be okay…that God heard your cry and all you must do is rely on Him. I would be a hypocrite, I would be contradicting myself on so many levels. Something I’ve done before, but as I said in my first post, it’s time that I come clean. It’s time that I face myself, to be real, and to be brutally honest with where I’m at in life. I’m 24 years old and I have yet to find my way back to Jesus. You would think it would be just that easy, but it’s not, and some people will never understand that. It’s hard to face the person you’ve become, it’s hard to realize that in fact, you’re a backslider, and to consider that you need help. We all need help.

I need help.

Fear of Failure

Recently I started to make a couple of small changes in my life, changes that would help me somewhat get back on track if I stay dedicated. I feel this time around it’ll be different, I have this confidence knowing that I’ll get out of this rut that I’m in. Days/weeks go by and then what you know, self-doubt begins to roll in. Reminding me of why I failed in the first place, why I couldn’t reconcile my relationship with God, and why I could never change no matter how hard I tried. Soon after a feeling of hopelessness begins to settle within, feelings of frustration, anger, unworthiness, and even tiredness. You’ve tried repeatedly to climb over this mountain, but you never seem to make it over.

It’s easy to fall into self-doubt mode, especially when you’ve already tried to pick yourself up multiple times only to fall back down again. It’s easy to call it quits because somehow you find it easier to remain in the same spot that you’ve tried to get up from. Here’s the problem, when we feel fear in the back of our minds, we are already predicting failure for ourselves. Have you ever heard the saying “third times the charm!” well who ever said that is a liar (because for me it’s more like 100th time is the charm…I think). I can’t tell you how many times I’ve said “tomorrow I’ll do that” or “next week I’ll begin this” only to not do any of those things you said you were going to do. I know this because I’m currently struggling with some things that I said that I would do only to keep putting it off one week after another.

As much and as quick I want to change my life around, first I must take baby steps. I must realize that I won’t change overnight or that I’ll have my life figured out by tomorrow. I must accept and embrace where I’m at in life right now and go from there. I have goals, I have dreams, and I have expectations for myself in this life. For so long I’ve allowed fear to hold me back from so many things, I’ve allowed failure to shape and mold me instead of allowing God to do just that. Maybe it’s not a matter of figuring out “What now?” or “Where do I start?” but to start with prayer and run with it, see what happens as you focus on the one who will help you get to where you need to be. What I can assume is that fear will always be in the back of my mind, I just need not to pay it any attention as I try and begin this new journey. Another thing I must embrace is that this may not be easy, I may struggle here and there along the way. Who knows I may lose focus again, but if I am aware of myself and how I think, I believe I can pray my way through and rely on God when I am troubled.

So, if you find yourself struggling to get yourself together including your life. Then know this, you’re not alone. If you’re struggling with self-doubt, anger, fear, anxiety, and so forth then know that there are many others out there experiencing the same thing. The only difference is that everyone is facing different circumstances, but who maybe experiencing the same emotions as you are. It’s like that one statement that people use every now and then, and that’s “The struggle is real”. Indeed, it is.