By the time lunch rolled around on Tuesday, I needed to escape. I let out a deep breathe the moment I hit the stairwell. I was in a funk, a case of overthinking about life, feeling like I'm just watching time slip by, and asking things like, "What am I doing with my life? What goal am I working toward?"
I have the mindset that I need to be doing more, I need to know what I want to do with my life, and I need to work toward whatever it is I want. So at lunch I was sitting in my car thinking about all these things and loathing myself / mood / mindset and feeling overwhelmed. So I called my mom, and here's what she told me:
She told me that I don't need to have everything figured out. That sometimes getting to that place you need or want to be is simply about putting one foot in front of the other. You put on your big girl pants and find a way to wade through everything because some days are simply about pushing forward. Also, sometimes a good cry can help. "A good cry is awesome."
Hearing my mom's words and breaking down in tears as she spoke them somehow cleansed my mind from all the self-criticism. It changed my entire mood this week. I was happy and content each day that followed. And I was reminded of the church service from last Sunday where the big idea was, "Contentment comes from dependency on Jesus, not self-sufficiency."
The message was about Philippians 4:13 and how it's easy to take this verse out of context and use it for our own selfish goals. We think, I can make more money or get that promotion because I can "accomplish all things through Christ." But when you look at the verse in context, you read that this verse is actually about contentment. Paul is saying that we can get through all things--good and bad--with Christ.
Jonathan Merritt put it this way:
"Paul isn’t telling Christians that they should dream bigger dreams; he is reminding them that they can endure the crushing feeling of defeat if those dreams aren’t realized. He’s not encouraging Christians to go out and conquer the world; he’s reminding them that they can press on when the world conquers them...
Contrary to popular belief, the Bible does not teach 'God will give you the strength to do whatever you set your mind to.' (Actually, anytime a foundational view in your theology begins with, 'God will give you', stop and do a double-check.) God is not a heavenly bellhop or divine sugar daddy or cosmic power plant to fuel your dream-quest. Instead, the Bible teaches, God is a sustainer when life feels unsustainable."
So I'm not exactly where I want to be right now and that's okay. Because when I feel like I'm weak and that I need to be more and that I've failed at being just that, God is with me. He is sustaining me with his love and peace and strength.
P.S. This song is a good listen for moments when you're feeling down on yourself.