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“Hope is an unbreakable spiritual lifeline, reaching past all appearances right to the very presence of God” (Hebrews 6:18-20).

When we look at ourselves in self-reflection and examine the parts of pieces of us that He is wanting to transform and it gets uncomfortable, it is imperative that we reach past appearances and put our hope in who He is and what He can do (and what He has promised to do!). When we see the storms around us that are raging and they aren’t making sense just quite yet, we have to look past the temporary suffering and put our trust in His path for us instead of our own plans of escape. When we haven’t found the freedom, deliverance and peace that we are longing for, take heart and know that He is using every part and piece of the pain for your good and His glory.

There is a principal that I have heard in different circles that is called the “Beholding Becoming Principal”. Basically, you become what you behold. If you look at the appearances of your struggle/storm, you focus on yourself and what YOU must do to get to the other side (instead of learning dependence on Him), and/or you dwell upon the lies that continue to infiltrate your soul- you will become more entrenched in the mind sets the keeps you bound in chains and keep you walking around in circles in the desert. However, if you focus on Him and dwell upon all of His truth and promises you become more like Him and begin the recovery process (aka sanctification) of exchanging the old mindsets and behaviors with the new ones based upon His truths rather than the enemies lies.

Recently, when I was being real with the emotions that I face and saw that one of the areas that my anxiety is rooted in my belief in the lie that I can’t depend on anyone but myself. When I took this deeper, I realized this lie is rooted in a past trauma that keeps me in the mindset that I am not worth showing up for. When I looked at this from another angle I saw that I struggle with being unworthy and believing that if I want love, I need to earn it. I also struggle with being unwanted and believing that I have to take care of myself and that no one is going to care for me. The reality, when I reach past appearances and my current mindset, is the truth that I am incredibly valuable and desired so much by God that He would send His Son to die for me. As I behold this truth and dwell on it, I become more aligned with the reality of it. But how do I get to living in this reality in such a way that it transforms my mind and consequently my behavior? In short:

1.) Stop running from emotions

2.) Ask Him to reveal the lies

3.) Ask Him to identify any memories or traumas that He wants to heal

4.) Forgive yourself and others

5.) Preach to yourself the truth

Considering that my most used coping mechanism is “perpetually positive” thoughts, I love step 5 and have a tendency to jump to the end of the list and tick that one real fast, over and over, and avoid the process that comes before it. This hasn’t been helpful. There is a journey He wants me to go on but instead I want the immediate gratification of the end result and escape the discomfort of having to be real, transparent and imperfect before Him or anyone else. As we look at the journey in greater detail, there might be an area(s) that you want to avoid or makes you uncomfortable. That is perfectly normal but I have found that these short cuts also short change you the freedom and breakthrough that you are seeking.

Also know, there are libraries of books written on each part of this process. I will share my processing about these topics in future posts but if there is an area that the Lord shows you that you need to spend some time and dive deeper, I will pass along some of the resources that I am aware of to help get you started.

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