Happy Friday, everyone! Today I am excited to welcome a guest post by friend and fellow blogger, Katrina Hamel. In today’s post, Katrina shares about how she is refusing to let fear and insecurity hold her back from using her God-given gifts. I hope it will encourage you to do the same! For more inspiration from the lovely Katrina, head on over to her blog by clicking right here!
“How can you write Christian stories when your life is so . . . well, messy?” At least that is what the anxious voices in my head ask me. These voices nearly stopped me from using my gifts for God. I still battle them every day.
“I’m not a ‘real’ Christian mom,” the whispers say. I remember what it was like before kids, to be “on fire” for the Lord. Sitting near the front. Pen poised at Bible studies. Knowing every word to every song. Now, life is crazy. I forget to pray before meals. I read the kids the same Curious George book every night for a week while the Children’s Bible gathers dust. I sit down to do personal devos, and end up waspish when I’m interrupted for the hundredth time. I haven’t made it through a full worship service for years, yes YEARS, because of chasing little ones through the hall, or supporting a shy child during FBC KIDS, or because one of my four kids has caught a cold, again! I’m trying to grow a sweet, Christian family, but I stumble again and again. Failures like these are embarrassing, discouraging, and make me feel like a terrible Christian mom. A mom who isn’t good enough to bless anyone else.
I was recently reminded that God jumps in beside me during the mess of life. When being involved in my local small groups was pretty much impossible with my ultra-shy daughter, I joined a small online study group. I was blessed beyond measure. I could still feel involved, encouraged, and strengthened in my faith, even through the laptop screen! One assignment changed my life. (I’m not exaggerating!) We were simply asked to write a short story drawn from the gospel of Matthew, but I was so pumped for that assignment, and dove in headfirst. Through the encouragement of others, that short story has blossomed into an entire novel, currently being prepared for publication, and also a blog of short stories. Through that study, I have been reminded that I love to write, and can use that love to encourage others. I can’t help but feel like God saw my struggles in the chaos of mothering, and opened this door for me to feel I can contribute to the body of believers.
Yet, despite the joy of finding a way to serve while still in the busy years of mothering, when I go to share my words, I have this niggling, pestering fear that someone is going to ask me,
“What makes you think that YOU are good enough to write this? You are a sinner. You struggle DAILY. You’re not the right kind of person for this at all.”
When my finger is hovering over the ‘publish’ button, I fear people are going to point fingers in my face and call me a hypocrite. Tell me to come back when I’ve got my life figured out. Every writer worries if their writing is quality enough, and I am no exception. Yet, I have the double burden of anxieties over being righteous enough too. My doubts flood in, and I just want to slam my laptop closed and pack it away forever.
But will I ever have my life “figured out”? Will I ever be “good enough” to bless others?
Thanks to gifted speakers and writers like Talasi, who are brave enough to be open, I’m learning to see that every Christian struggles. Everyone has their own burdens and sins to trip them up. I remember the verse that ALL have sinned and fall short. (Romans 3:23) Despite her struggles, Talasi keeps charging forward. So can I. So can you! God began a good work in us, and He will keep on working in us! (Philippians 1:6)
While I was a sinner, God forgave me. (Romans 5:8) He knows my deficiencies and struggles, and asks that I put aside my anxieties, pray, and let the peace of God guard my heart and mind while I practice what is good. (Philippians 4:6-9) If your life is in crazy-mom-mode like mine, know that you’re not alone. And we ARE good enough to bless others, even in our imperfections.