It’s Okay To Go To The Deepest Parts Of Struggle.

“I am learning how to struggle.

I am learning how to hurt.

I am learning how to wrestle and not give up.

I am learning perseverance and endurance.

I am learning just how weak I am and just how STRONG God is.”
-Unknown

Now, I’m not sure who penned these words, but I first read them in a blog post by Jake Larson. It was one of those things that you read and think, “Man, God had that for me today.” Learning how to struggle is exactly what I have been doing as of late. Struggling is so often looked at as a bad thing, and to some degree, it does suck. However, on the other hand, struggle is good. As my stepdad once told me, “I hate to see you struggle, but it shows you aren’t willing to give up. You aren’t willing to give in to what the world is telling you. It shows that you really care about what God has to say about sin.” Another saying that I absolutely love is “Hallelujah we are free to struggle. We aren’t struggling to be free.” That comes from Tenth Avenue North’s song The Struggle. Through this process of struggle, God had been teaching me a lot of things through this season of my life and has been doing a lot of heart work in me. A few of which are:

•Patience || God has been teaching me what patience really looks like. I am learning to wait on Him and His timing for all things. Patience with frustrating situations or people at work.

•God is the only one who can pick up the broken pieces of my heart and put it back together. I can’t rely on other people to fix me, especially since everyone is broken in their own way and that people aren’t perfect.

•God is teaching me to rely on His strength because I can’t do it on my own, that it’s okay to be weak and even to reach out to others and especially Him in moments of weakness.

•He’s teaching me to remember that even when I do fail, He dusts me off and tells me to try again. That it’s not always about being completely free from sin, but learning the art of trying again.

If you are struggling, know that the struggle and suffering isn’t going to last forever if you belong to Christ Jesus. Be encouraged in the fact that struggling shows you care about God and His movement in your life.

In God’s grip,
Alex

Redemption

A few days ago, I wrote a blog talking about my struggle with pornography. After writing it, I felt like I should write a follow up post about the hope that I have in Christ.

Jesus said in Luke 5:31, 32, “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.” When Jesus said this, He was speaking to the Pharisees because they asked Him why He hung around sinners and tax collectors. And how awesome is that? We as a human race are sick and broken, but Jesus came to earth to love us anyway! We don’t deserve the forgiveness that Jesus offers, but because God loves us so much, He gave us grace.

Jon Acuff told a story about when one time he was at Chuck E. Cheeses (he was a kid at the time) and he saw another little boy get a big bowl of ice cream. And what he thought was the sprinkle line was really the hot dog condiment line. This little boy accidentally put mustard on his ice cream. A worker had seen this and asked if he wanted a new bowl of ice cream. The boy shamefully replied, “No thanks, I’ll just mix it in.” And he mixed in the mustard until his ice cream was a yellow mess. And that got me thinking, how often do we do this in real life? Where we are sick and broken and we just mix in the sin and shame until its a disgusting mess. Let God take your bowl of disgusting ice cream and let him fix it!

Even though my bowl is a disgusting mess, God still loves me and he is working in my life in order to fix that bowl. If you ever feel like you’re too far lost, that there is no way you could possibly be forgiven or loved by God again, that is a LIE straight from Hell! Satan is trying to rip you further and further from God. But it’s never too late for you to give your bowl to God and let Him fix it.

God loves you! No matter what you are struggling with.

“No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us.”
-Romans 8:37

“God made Him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in Him we might become the righteousness of God.”
-2 Corinthians 5:21

In God’s grip,
Alex