Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Self Doubt

Just recently I had the opportunity to spend some quality time with a dear friend of mine.  As my friend stayed with our family for several days he made some keen observations.  After several days of listening and watching me, my friend took a deep breath and pointed out something very important to me. 

My friend calmly and lovingly said; do you realize how much you put yourself down?  He continued by saying; I have watched and listened to you and I am tired of putting yourself down. I will not tolerate you doing that from this point forward.  You are more than you give yourself credit for. 

I listened with an open heart and was stunned. I was is awe that someone could see through me and see the self doubt that lives deep within me.  I have always had a sense of confidence when it came to my path as a leader within the church but in so many other areas I doubt my abilities. I compare myself to others and so often see the places I have missed the mark.

Throughout this Holy Week, I have been thinking about this basic question:  Why haven't I as a human being (one that believes that my Redeemer calls me His Beloved) grown tired of comparing myself and putting myself down? I would never allow someone else to speak the words to me that I speak to myself.  Why do I tolerate myself speaking harsh words of comparison?

In this amazing week, I am experiencing the renewing of myself.  I have a free gift of God creating me new and whole each and everyday, all I need to do is to accept it.  I do not need to tolerate the self doubt when the Master has told me that I am a new creation.  I do not need to lean into the the part of me that tears myself apart instead of building up the good that lives within me.  As you walk the road ahead of you, may you find someone who speaks the truth to you even when it hurts.  May you realize that you are good and whole just the way you are.  Breathe deeply and accept yourself. Join with me in saying: I am good!

Friday, April 8, 2011


On Ash Wednesday the sanctuary was filled with dry, parched branches and twigs.  Since then each week has brought about different shades of green to represent the growth that is upon us. We've moved from the dry branches to branches that have budded into flowers and are unfolding into full leaves.  This past Sunday as a branch with buds barely opening were placed on the pulpit I simply smiled.  I loved the color that was before me.  I loved the sense of life that I was standing in the midst of. 

I absolutely loved that the branch held life and was coming into it's own.

Then it happened....

I looked down in the middle of the second service and noticed that the blossom on the tree branch was already withering.  The buds that were so full a few hours before were fading.  I was stunned by the stark difference in just a few hours and then I realized something very important.  The branches were no longer attached to the very thing that provided security for their well being...they were no long connected to the trunk that led to the roots that held the water they so desperately needed.

The branches needed to be connected to the tree...the branches needed to be connected to the water source in order to have life.

The branch was me; it represents each of us that get disconnected from God's living water for one reason or another.  We may not think that it's that important for us to connect ourselves to God on a daily basis but the reality is that we are not that different from the branch. God seeks to give us a living water that helps us to blossom into all that we were created to be.  We may flourish for a moment on our own but if we are not connected to our water source we will surely wither in one way or another. 

I am thankful for the water and for the ability to be connected to something that desires to give me life.