Don't Waste Your Time: It's an Inside Job
This is not as easy as I thought it would. I don't know how to start this conversation off with you guys and as I'm sitting here contemplating what to do, I wonder if this post will even make sense to yall. But that's where the Holy Spirit comes into factor, so no need for me to worry too much about that. Though, this doesn't solve the question at the moment: how do I begin this post with you guys?
Should I tell you about an experience I've had? Nah, I've done that multiple times, and it's getting redundant. Or maybe I should propose a question? Wait, I think I already asked a question, and I'm on paragraph two, so that defeats the purpose of that writing style. Oh, maybe it would be best if I just came out and told you what this post is about. Yes (insert light bulb moment), that is it! Let's get to the center of this post (and maybe, just maybe, this post can wrap it's self up with enough understanding to make sense).
I want to tell you a harsh, honest, time saving, heartache preventing truth that I refused to embrace for years…until now: happiness, fulfillment, and everything that brings you to the best version of yourself is an inside job.
Imagine little miniature versions of yourself working rigorously inside the mental and spiritual parts you; these versions of yourself begin to work intensely when you are hurt in any way. See I believe that there are way too many people in this world getting jobs, making decisions, getting into relationships, and selecting choices that they are using to fill the unbearable pain that that is caused when true peace, joy, love, and happiness is missing. (Talk about a run on sentence; somebody better get me an English professor cause I'm writing like a maniac.)
I know, where is this coming from?
As you may know, I'm currently single as I'm writing this post. (Gosh I feel like I'm at confession and just announced my biggest secret!) This was a decision that I knew God wanted me to make and it has shown me truths in areas of my life that I needed to investigate more. Well in the process of this whole self-care (and love) journey, I've become very aware (I really wanted to use, but I don't want to be dramatic) of how easy it is to allow yourself to hop from one experience to another in a (for lack of better words) foolish way.
(If I hit a soft spot, I apologize, but this is my truth.) You know what I'm talking about: rebounding
See, I believe that whenever conditions in our lives are switched up, we tend to gravitate (knowingly or unknowingly) to something or someone to fill or divert us from the pain or uncomfortable feeling of the switch up.
Now it may seem like this a relationship only thing, but I'm actually talking about everything in life. From jobs, friends, career paths, to traumatic experiences. Instead of facing the uncomfortable and trying path that the road to real recovery (proper lasting recover) may take us, we look for a quick fix. Instead of being addicted to what is best for us, we become addicted to a process that harms us.
Recently I had to catch myself. ( I told y'all I stay messing up!) I made a promise to myself that I believe God wants me to keep (I promise to share it with y'all when Jesus gives me the go-ahead). I almost jeopardized this promise, but God destroyed the possibility of me compromising so that I could properly heal. (Gosh, it's difficult not sharing this with y'all but I pray that through my current season, God will be like, "hey this is why I put you through this. Now go share the story!")
I learned in this new Jesus no (that's what I'm going to start calling these holy rejections...wait I like that too; okay holy rejections is what it's going to be) that as people we long to be fulfilled mentally, physically, and spiritually. But we are obsessed with this state of being and are willing to not only break our own promises but to purposefully hurt ourselves and those we involve when we do not allow God to heal us properly.
It's actually sad and sickening to think about. I mean y'all know I love people, and all I want to do in life is love on everyone I meet. But I realized that by not taking this journey of self-love and care the way my soul needs, I am going to allow myself to become (and stay as) a walking tornado. I will destroy everything I touch and everyone I encounter when I refuse to allow myself the necessary time that I need to be who God needs me to be. It's like that post I wrote a while back: A Gift Before It's Time is A Curse
The pain and hurt and confusion and all those feelings you are uncomfortable encountering are there because your soul and mind need to you overcome them so that they can embrace and fully experience your next chapter. Happiness, joy, peace, and contentment are inside jobs. No person, place, or thing (and I have turned into a 2nd-grade teacher) can fill those voided areas of your life. Believe me when I say nothing will fix you but Jesus, love, time, and patience!
You've got to pause on the possible relationships, pray rigorously about that new job, and take that opportunity to the altar before you say yes. And while you do those things, listen attentively (I cannot emphasize this enough) to the Holy Spirit. If God says no, trust me, it's for your benefit. If God says wait, don't start trying to open your present from him.
It's crucial to ask yourself this question I've repeatedly been asking myself:
"Is this (fill in the blank) a way for me to run away from what the Holy Spirit is telling me to face? Am I confusing what ought to not be a lesson for a blessing?"
And don't say you don't know when you ask the question above because once you ask, your soul will tell you.
'Have you not known? Have you not heard? The everlasting God, the Lord, The Creator of the ends of the earth, Neither faints nor is weary. His understanding is unsearchable. He gives power to the weak, And to those who have no might, He increases strength. Even the youths shall faint and be weary, And the young men shall utterly fall, But those who wait on the Lord Shall renew their strength; They shall mount up with wings like eagles, They shall run and not be weary, They shall walk and not faint.'
- Isaiah 40:28-31 (NKJV)
'My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing. If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him. But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind. For let, not that man suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord; he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways.'
'For we were saved in this hope, but hope that is seen is not hope; for why does one still hope for what he sees? But if we hope for what we do not see, we eagerly wait for it with perseverance. Likewise, the Spirit also helps in our weaknesses. For we do not know what we should pray for as we ought, but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. Now He who searches the hearts knows what the mind of the Spirit is because He makes intercession for the saints according to the will of God. And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose. For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brethren. Moreover whom He predestined, these He also called; whom He called, these He also justified; and whom He justified, these He also glorified.'
Don't go looking for other people or things to fulfill the pain that you have yet to face. Don't make excuses to allow someone or something into your life just so you feel good again. Pain sucks but you are bound to repeat the unnecessary mistakes in your new chapter when you refuse to take the time you need to learn from your previous section. Stop rebounding with your job, time, money, dating relationships, and everything else you're using to distract yourself from the growth opportunity God has set before you. You've got to become so busy working on the inside that anything on the outside cannot mess you up.
P.S: let me give you a 'picture this moment':
Your life is like one of those massive picture puzzles that have a ridiculous amount of pieces. Every journey and experience is meant to leave you with one or more piece(s) that are intended to fit into your big picture. When you try to rebound with anything or anyone, you take a puzzle piece that wasn't even included in the box and try to fit it into a spot in your overall picture.
You will have bumps and corners that keep the piece from fitting correctly. You'll wonder why and try to place this incorrect piece somewhere else in your puzzle only to find out it doesn't fit anywhere after multiple attempts. Then when you put the piece aside (the wrong one), you come to realize the markings and the design on it doesn't even match your picture. Now you've wasted time trying to make something that doesn't belong in your life fit. See what I mean?
If you never studied the picture, continuously looked back at the box that has the image on it, and taken your time to understand and grasp the shaping of the missing pieces, you will waste your time and the whoever that incorrect piece belongs to.
Work on you child. Work on the void you currently sense, and the pain and hurt. It takes time, and you may feel like it's unnecessary, but you will never fully finish your puzzle piece if you continue to rebound and pick up pieces that don't even belong in your life only because you refused to go through the process. Learn this lesson now, it'll come in handy in more ways than one.
Let me conclude with a quote from my RA freshman year (I love this quote so much!):
Until next time...