Awhile ago, (July 2015 to be exact) my Pastor started a series titled ‘No More Dry Places’ where he put together why being stagnant in life, or dry, is such a dangerous thing and how we can remove ourselves from that dry place. At the time, the place I was stagnant in was my job. I worked for a well known insurance company, with great benefits, great salary, awesome coworkers….and I hated every second of it! Please understand I was never ungrateful for my job because it had all the things everyone told me I should want. But I remember the very first panic attack I had sitting in the parking lot before my shift started.
The walls of my car seemed to be touching each other, my face was hot and sweaty and no matter how much air I blasted from the dashboard, I couldn’t feel cool. My chest felt like I was sitting at the bottom of a dog pile. I promise I thought I was going to die. I tried to pick up the phone to call my bestfriend who I know was parked somewhere in the same sea of cars but everytime I tried to grab my cell phone, my fingers went limp. So…..the whole experience was TERRIBLE to say the least.
Fast forward a year and a half, I came across my notes from that series and it got me thinking… I left my terrible job for a job I adore, but what’s my dry area now?
I pondered on it for a while until a conversation with my soulmate pulled me to reality.
“Janae, you don’t trust anybody.” He said.
“I do, I trust you..” I immediately started getting defensive.
“…but who else?” He was frustrated. I could see it written across his forehead. his posture suggested exhaustion even though we had just fell asleep on a movie we had been trying to watch together. How dare he suggest that I have a unnecessary wall up? I thought. I’m Janaenicole, and yes I don’t trust people but only after they’ve shown themselves to be unworthy of my trust.
“You never ask for help because you don’t have anyone you trust to get things done right. I want for you in this upcoming year to open up, let people in, and learn to trust.” I was speechless…How dare he call my bluff. How dare he tell me to open up after all the failed friendships, relationships, and companionships I’ve been through...but he was right! But I didn’t know that yet so I took his hand, smiled reassuringly as we walked down the dark street in silence both minds reeling at 100mph.
I’ve always been one of those people that you either love or you hate. I used to be so shy, reserved and awkward growing up until I learned to stand up to my bullies and you can ask my mom that was the last time I was ever quiet. But the thing that has gotten me in some tight squeezes at time is the fact that I make no apologies unless I’m sorry and although I don’t like hurting peoples feelings I have because in my experience being quiet gets you nowhere. When I was a young teenager my view was when someone hurts you, hurt them back. If they say something mean, flirt with their boyfriend. If they flirt with your boyfriend, flirt with their brother. I hurt because I got hurt…but what does the bible say?
Even though I’ve moved on from that childish mentality, I still tend to get hurt a lot by people I care about and I can’t figure out how to stop it (even to this day). This created a fear. How do I get rid of the fear? So I went to The Word; Proverbs 28:26 to be exact! `Those who trust in themselves are fools, but those that walk in wisdom are kept safe.’
Joshua 1:9 ‘Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid, do not be discouraged for the Lord Your God will be with you wherever you go.
Jeremiah 17:7-8 ‘But blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord, whose confidence is in him. They will be like a tree planted by the water that sends out its roots by the stream. It does not fear when heat comes; its leaves are always green. It has no worries in a year of drought and never fails to bear fruit.”
So what did we (me) learn? God gave us the spirit of discernment NOT the spirit of fear. So when we sense that someone or something may be doing us harm or has the ability to do us harm we are supposed to be mindful but not weary, worrisome, or scared. God will take care of those who do us harm (both intentional and unintentional). If our discernment siren is firing off we are supposed to lean closer to God and trust that no matter what happens that he already has it taken care of. In fact if we do lean on Him he’s going to reward us by being the root that keeps us grounded and planted in the right place at the right time. All we have to do is stay strong and trust. Let’s be honest, sometimes thats super hard to do but thats why you need friends to keep you accountable. Which means you have to have friends. Which means you have to open up to people and give them a fair shot in your life regardless of how you have been treated OR how you have treated others.
k, Good Talk.