Facing Our Inner Demons

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I believe God brings us to a place where there are no distractions, a place to break us from our own demons that lurk within. The ones that hide and that God knows that they need to come out. There has to be a willingness to let go of the things that haunt us, the things that keep us awake at night and that drain the life out of us during the day. One of our biggest fears are people seeing us the way we see ourselves. I’ve learned that I’m not the only person who is hard on themselves and sees themselves as being unworthy.

It’s when we’re at our weakest that Satan comes and plays with our minds, making us believe and feel that we are incredibly worthless. A well-known Christian rapper once said during in an open interview “We continue to do the things that are wrong, yet we don’t do anything about it”. Some of us are scared to face our own demons, some of us would rather keep them hidden than deal with them. We continue on this walk in hopes of no one finding out of who we really are as a person. Who are we really when no one is around? What do we do when we’re all alone? You want to know something? God knows EVERYTHING that you do when the curtains are closed and no one is around. He knows every single thought, every feeling, and everything that you do.

There are some things that have a strong hold on us, things that make us feel like a prisoner and that we’ll never be free. Addictions that have consumed our lives, depression that keeps us quiet, and I could go on and on here. The thing is we have to be willing to get on our knees and ask God for help, and for guidance as we go through life. The spirits that we battle with come through our addictions. Example: An individual who never leaves their room because they are attached to their computer, it’s what keeps them company. It’s all they know, the only way they ever communicate with another human being. They become imprisoned by their addiction, and if confronted they become defensive.

We fight with ourselves daily, we fight with how we feel and how we act. It becomes a constant struggle for us, and when we feel the need to turn to God instead we turn away because for some reason that’s much easier to do. My pastor once said, “When you feel like not going to church, then that’s when you need to go to church”. Some of us refuse to leave the wilderness, some of us refuse to crawl out of our own hell. Then there are some (like me) who don’t take the time to pray, or even speak to God. I myself struggle with a lot of demons that I keep “hidden”, tucked away so no one knows that I even have them. At some point, I will have to come forward before God, and He will see everything. And I mean everything. All of the ugly, and the good. This is why He has given us this time, this opportunity, this instant to confess all that we’ve done. At some point we will have to face our demons whether we like it or not, in the end, it won’t be an option. We will see God face to face, and stand before Him in all His glory.

I will end with this. God loves you more than anyone ever could, He’ll embrace you like no one else has ever embraced you. He will tell you endlessly about how much He loves you, and how much He cares for you. He will remind you of how worthy you really are, and that no matter how dirty you feel He will wash you clean as snow. You are more than what you struggle with, than what you battle with. You have the freedom to rise up. So what will you do?

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The Hunger for Honesty

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Truth, truth comes from those who have nothing to hide. Honesty comes from those who don’t fear humility. Sincerity comes from those who are not bound but free.

I hate honesty but I also crave it.

I’ve learned that there is a difference in hating honesty and wanting honesty. Most of us dislike when someone points something out about us that we know is true and we dislike it, even more, when we are exposed. Then there’s the type of honesty that we ourselves crave, the kind where we wish we could just be honest with someone for once. The kind of honesty that doesn’t necessarily pertain to us, but the type where we wish we could be more honest with people and with ourselves.

My devotion for this week ironically ties in with my blog, but it gears towards in being brutally honest with God. When we pray most of us only touch the surface, we never dive in deep and pull out the things that we truly struggle with. We only end up giving God a little piece of what is going on in our lives, and we never give Him the whole picture. Of course, He doesn’t have to ask since He knows all things, but He wants us to dig deep and be honest with Him for once. With God honesty is honesty, and truth is truth. Not only does God want to be engaged in our lives, and not only does he want intimacy with us, but He wants us to be honest with Him. He stands in front of us making eye contact while we’re looking all over the place, only because for some reason we’re afraid that He will know everything about us if we make eye contact back. Well, I hate to break to you but He knows what you try to hide underneath. He knows when you’re lying, and when you’re being honest.

The hunger for honesty for me personally is to be able to tell those how I really feel about something. Not in a rude manner, but in a respectful way without feeling guilty or ashamed. There are times where I feel compelled to help someone or be here and there at a specific time and I just can’t. I don’t have the heart to turn people away, even when the water is up to my neck I strive to stay afloat despite my weariness. If I could just be honest for once, I wonder if it would bring me any comfort or any relief. To be honest with God, to go beyond what I normally talk about with Him I haven’t done in such a long time. I myself must admit that I only touch the surface part when I’m in prayer or just speaking to Him.

What if we told God every single thing about us? What if we told Him every single lie we’ve ever made, every single thought, everything we’ve ever said, and every feeling we’ve ever felt? How about all the things we personally struggle with? It’s a choice to go beyond what we normally pray/tell God. Sometimes we just need to sit and be honest with ourselves for once, so honest that the tears start to flow and we don’t even know how to start the conversation with Him. Do you remember when God asked Peter 3 times if he loved him? Peter told God over and over “Yes Lord, you know I love” with an affirmative tone. Peter just said it because He knew that’s how he truly felt about God, but He wasn’t getting the big picture right away. God wanted Peter to realize that Peter would someday lead his people and that he needed to love unconditionally in order to be the leader that God called him to be. So when God asks us to be honest with Him, even if He just asks us one time. Then maybe He is trying to help us see the bigger picture here, and I can’t say what specifically since everyone’s walk is different. God is trying to lead us, but we let the things of everyday life get in the way and hinder us from making any time for God.

Just remember this…

Jesus cares when you feel like no one else does, and He listens to you when you feel like no one is listening. The best thing about talking with God is that He listens, and if we’re quiet enough He may just give us some answers. But remember we have to begin to be honest with Him. No more of this dipping our little toe in the water and that’s it type of conversations. We must immerse ourselves fully in His presence, even if we don’t know what to say right away. Eventually, the words will find you and God will be waiting there ever so patiently. It’s time to be honest, it’s time to be aware of where we stand in this life and who we are as a person.

Here’s one of NF’s songs that I just love. Raw and Honest. The link is below…

NF – Oh Lord

Our Real Weakness

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For so long I’ve felt like asking for help makes you weak and a lot of times I still feel that way, but as I get older I find that pretending you don’t need it is the real weakness.              NF

There are many people out there who struggle to ask others for help. Some of us struggle with all different types of things, and it’s even a bit more complex for those who struggle spiritually. Honestly, the last thing I want to do is burden someone else with my personal problems. The type of stuff that I should be able to bring to God, but even in that sense I still feel this shame come over me for even thinking about it. Anxiety can cause us from having to talk with someone, it can stop us from seeking the help that we really need.

We go through life showing people a side of us that they expect and want to see, while deep down we are crying out. The other day I had posted a little rant, and right off the bat people commented that I should take into consideration that the person may have been crying out for help. See now here’s the thing, I did feel like I contradicted myself in a way but finally realized that I didn’t. No. I didn’t mention any names in my rant or point my finger at anyone in particular. You can only help someone so much, and so many times before you realize that they won’t change. No matter how hard you try to be there for that person. It requires effort on their part as well, you can’t force someone to tell you what is wrong or handcuff them until they spill their guts out. We’re like that, we cry for help but never move from our seats. We expect someone to come to us, someone who will finally get it and understand what it is we’re going through.

I’m not saying I’m any better cause I’m not, I still struggle with asking for help when I need it. All that comes to mind is the shame, and feeling unworthy. Some would even call it being selfish. I constantly fail myself and those around me, and yet I don’t do anything about it. That’s because I refuse to get up off of this seat of mine, and go out and talk to those who may be able to relate to whatever it is I’m going through. It’s like there’s this invisible duct tape over my mouth, God takes it off and I put it right back on. Just the other day my mom came up and told me “Maria you have to stop being so hard on yourself and give yourself some credit every once in a while”. I keep looking at the calendar and noticing that 2018 is literally right around the corner. Lately, I’ve been telling myself that for 2018 I’m going to treat myself better, give myself a break and work on the things that I lack. Take it day by day, you know? Finally get out and seek help from the one who has been there for me since day one. Jesus. Jesus is the very first thing that is on my lips once mid-night strikes and the new year is in.

So do yourself a favor, read this next line out loud if you need to. Stop being so hard on yourself, God sees your worth even when you don’t, He loves you for you and if He didn’t then He never would’ve given you life. Whatever sin you’re struggling with spiritually, I can guarantee you that there are others struggling with the same thing. Stop blaming the world for your anger, your bitterness, your heartache, because you have the choice to crawl out of the hell hole you’re in. Stop letting your negative thoughts separate you from what you know is true. Fight it. Don’t stop fighting, don’t ever give up, and don’t ever feel afraid/ashamed to ask for help or even seek advice. It’s better to speak than to stay silent for the rest of your life.

He sees that you are worthy, even if you don’t.

A Broken Trust

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I don’t think we realize it, but there are times where we try to do things our own way. Whatever situation we are facing, or whatever it is we’re battling with, we always tend to think of how we can fix the situation or problem. In the end we make more of a mess than what we began with, and then that feeling of hopelessness settles in. Sometimes God has a way of tiring us out, or getting us to that place of not knowing what to do anymore. As if we’ve exhausted all of our options. I don’t know why it’s so difficult to turn to God when life becomes a bit too much, but all in all we’re the one’s who make it difficult. This is how I like to picture it, God sitting in a chair watching us…hearing us, but mainly waiting on us to actually cry out to Him. It may take a while for us to even get to this point, but eventually we are faced with having to pray to God and allowing Him peer into our lives to see what is going on.

“Oh what little faith you have Maria”. Those words ring in my head each time something big or minor happens in my life, because in my head I tend to question God even more after I had just prayed on the situation. It takes faith in knowing God can handle any situation that comes our way, and He never looks at the size of the situation as often as we do. He is God. Period.

Maybe we’ve been praying on a situation, and trusting that God will take care of it even though nothing has changed. I believe there are times where God tests our faith, He wants to see what it is we’ll do when facing a certain situation in our lives. Will we turn to Him? Will we pray? Or simply walk away with the intentions of fixing the problem on our own? If you’re anything like me, then I usually go straight for the “I got this” when really I can’t even get a grip on life. I have to admit, it’s hard to trust in something/someone whom you can’t physically see or feel. If we just allowed God to filter into our lives, if we just gave Him 10 minutes of our time, I believe thing’s would start to change. Our attitudes, behaviors, and having more faith that God can make the impossible possible.

Matthew 21:22

And all things, whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive.

Hebrews 11:1

Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.

There are many scripture that talk about having faith, and trusting in God. Hebrews 11:1 is personally one of my favorites. “The evidence of things not seen” hits home for me. The generation today is more of a “need to feel, need to hear, and need to see” type, which is fine and all but it should be different when it comes to God. Meditate on Hebrews 11:1, and put it into your own words of what that verse means to you. Some would say that it’s pretty self-explanatory, but any verse in the bible can be translated/viewed differently.

Hope you all have a blessed day, and take care.

Inseparable

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Whenever I find myself wandering, and sometimes it’s usually away from God. I feel as if he has this hold on me, like a rope around my heart, pulling me back and asking “Where are you going?”. I’m not quite sure how to describe it without sounding…weird I guess. It’s like having a toddler, when you go somewhere that is over packed with people you want to make sure that your child is insight. You want to make sure that you can see them, and see where it is they’re going. You don’t want to lose the, or want anything bad happening to them. So you either put them in a stroller, strap them in, or get them a backpack with one of those leash things (which most parents aren’t a fan of, but if you’re over protective then the whole back pack thing may just be the thing).

It’s like God has a leash on us, and when we begin to stray he sees just how far we’ll go before pulling us back to Him.  At some point we even begin to realize how much we really need Him, and that we can’t make it through this thing called “life” without His guidance. Romans 8:39 speaks to me, this is what it says…

Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

There is nothing that could separate us from God, and I mean NOTHING. Just when we think we’ve lost our way, or that we no longer feel worthy, God is standing right there. Waiting for you. People come in go out of our lives, some leave scars, and some just have to go for whatever reason. When everything seems to be falling apart, and no one understands, we will always have this hope. The hope that someone will always be there no matter what may come, no matter what we do, and no matter how we’ve been living. God has you. Sometimes we need to go through stuff in order to be brought back down to our knees, and admit that we are nothing without Jesus.

We all have choices to make, and sometimes we aren’t always sure that we are making the right choices. Whatever we do will lead us down different paths, but that’s where we gain experience as an individual. It’s how we grow spiritually, mentally, and physically. This is why I believe God allows us to wander, but not so far out, because there are some paths that can lead to destruction or even ruin. Wherever you are, whatever you’re doing, know that Jesus is waiting for you. He’s waiting for you to talk to Him, and He yearns to hear how you’re doing and where you’ve been. Even though He is with us 24/7, He want’s nothing more than to hear it come from you personally. There’s power when we admit to certain things in our lives that we are not proud of, thing’s that have caught us off guard. Jesus holds us until we learn to relax, to be calm, and to know that everything is going to be alright. We just have to rest in Him, and trust that He is leading us back to the heart of Worship.

Like they say…

Not All Who Wander Are Lost.