Pain and regret. The trickle of a tear beginning to form in the corner of my eye. Failure. A noun that became an identity. Failure is all that exists in the mirror. Remembering simply leads to remorse and forgetting is the only escape. A never resting tormenter. The enemy that won’t abate. This is me.
Around one year ago, I moved from Chesapeake, Virginia to North Carolina. Full of energy and a determination, I was ready to make a difference in the world. And no voice of reason or shred of doubt could hold me back! I knew for a fact that God had called me and I would not let mere words have any sway in controlling my passion!
I lasted one week before I quit.
You see, I had an incredible opportunity to work with a FANTASTIC organization. I could spend months helping to heal women who had escaped from the horrors of sexual trafficking and prostitution, watching lives transformed by the power of the gospel, restored to dignity. I was in a position to use these gifts God has given me to bring joy and light into an unexplainably dark place. I could do good and watch the fruits of my labor bring real life to “the least of these.” This world is immensely broken. Everyone can see that. Right now, while you read this, there are MILLIONS of people being trafficked, sold for sex, used, abused, thrown away. These are men, women, and CHILDREN who need advocates to stand up for what’s right. Little girls around twelve years old, some younger, are being used by heartless men to satisfy dark desires! And I was there to help. But after one week of working, I quit for reasons that are so embarrassingly stupid, I don’t even feel they are worth mentioning here. I ran, possibly creating DEEP wounds in women I had just started to get to know. Looking back, I would rather me have died on the way there than leave like I did. At least then I would have been a martyr.
However, I say all of that not to beat up on myself further but to show where I am coming from. This week, by the grace of God, I stumbled upon a post (READ IT!) written by one of my best friend’s sisters about how every one of us need to start living in the moments God gives us on this Earth. Every day is SO precious! How SELFISH is it to live in constant regret when our Father has already promised to remove our transgressions as far as the “east is from the west” (Psalm 103:12). I and you, whoever you may be, if you are in Christ, we are forgiven. 1 Corinthians 5:17 says “If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation, the OLD HAS GONE, and the NEW HAS COME.” And this is not all! It goes on. “All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to himself and gave us the ministry of reconciliation; that is, in Christ God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting to us the message of reconciliation. Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, God making his appeal though us” (1 Corinthians 5:18-21). “In all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us” (Romans 8:37). God has come to give us life and give it ABUNDANTLY and yet I meet so many people who seem so tired of being alive. What a shame! Personally, I have lived this past year in regret, beating myself up for not being more of a man as God has called me to be! But in so doing, I was just continuing the cycle of hating myself, living in sin, and beating myself up even more. What good is this?! It is useless and downright dumb!
We NEED to stop beating ourselves up from our past mistakes in such a way that it simply drives us to hate ourselves more! It’s time we started looking at our failures and determining to everyday be stronger mentally, spiritually, and emotionally. Only then can we expect to be useful and only then can we stop being SO TIRED of being tired. This life is way too short to dwell uncontrollably on our failings, as they will be as numerous sometimes as our successes. We have to move on, realizing that when we are at our most weak state, that is when God can make us our strongest!
Further, God is able to use anyone at any time to do anything. He can use you to fulfill any purpose whether you really want to do it or not. But… oh what a magical word! BUT, God in his divine mercy has decided for a reason completely unknown to me to allow us to assist him in spreading joy and fulfillment to the world. He has tasked us with an incredible mission and equipped us with unyielding power. We are God’s children, created in Christ Jesus to do good works which God has prepared in advance for us to do! And marked by the Holy Spirit, we literally cannot be held back. Satan has been crippling me for an entire year and I am SICK OF IT! NO MORE! Today is a new day and tomorrow will be new yet again! And I YEARN to see what I can do with the rest of THIS DAY to further his kingdom.
I am ready to breathe again.