I was presented with this question today in an e-mail from Jeff Goins, he invited readers to respond to his e-mail with a struggle they're having. My initial response was 'just one? I could write a book!!' (yes, pun intended.....)
I knew immediately what it is I grapple with - perfectionism and not feeling worthy. The two are intertwined, perfectionism is the
biggest head of the dragon I need to slay each day (thank-you, Michael Hyatt) because the
thought of not being able to make something perfect fills me with
fear, and I'm deceived into 'knowing' if I don't do it perfectly,
that means I'm not good enough, and I'm not worthy - of anything.
I know all this is a lie, that the enemy would love for me to
believe, and I fight it with the Truth everyday - while the enemy has come to steal, kill and destroy, Jesus came that we may have life, and have it to the full.
I was so grateful for Jeff's invitation, because as a society, a community, we don't encourage each other to share our struggles, our challenges, what it is that causes us pain. We don't like doing it, because there is this perception that to do so would be a display of weakness, that to say 'actually, I'm not coping' would be admitting defeat. I hear people say so often 'I don't like to ask for help', and I'm the biggest culprit of that. We don't want to impinge on anyone else's life, to be an added burden, so we continue to float down the river in our boat without a paddle, desperately clinging to the sides and praying that we don't end up dumped into the current, completely powerless to make it to the surface.
And as much as we don't like to admit our own struggles and ask for help, we're also collectively not very good at asking the people around us how they're going, how we can help. It's not because we don't care, it's because we don't really know how to - how to ask, how to respond, we're fearful of making things worse, of not being able to say 'the right thing'. So we don't.
This is not how it is meant to be.
We are made for more than this. I know I'm probably starting to sound like a broken record, but we are made to live as a community, each individual connected as a whole, to bear one another's burdens and to encourage each other through this maze of life. People want to be heard, to be acknowledged, to feel a part of the whole. Most people don't want someone to solve their problems for them, they just want someone to listen, to hear their voice, and more often than not, that's enough.
So I'm asking today, what do you struggle with?
I have been very blessed by some writers/bloggers/artists in my journey, by their encouragment and how they give so freely of themselves. I'd really encourage you to go and check out their blogs, and be blessed by what they have to offer.
Emily Freedman at chatting at the sky
Ann Voskamp at A Holy Experience
Tsh Oxenreider at Simple Mom
Stephanie Pearl-McPhee at Yarn Harlot
Jeff Goins at Goins, Writer
I'll be sharing more blogs/sites as I come across them.