How Are You, Really?
How are you, really?
This quarantine has allowed me a lot of time to contemplate my life and my journey with Jesus. I've had enough lazy days to sit down and think about things that I never really had a chance to think about before. One of the questions that I've been asking myself recently is, "How are you, really?" I've been digging deep into how I really feel about this season. Most days, I would find a comfortable spot in my room, outside in my father's garden, or in the family room and just take inventory of my life. I'd write down areas where I feel like I'm struggling and just begin to talk through those areas with Jesus. As I'm talking to Him, I'm usually brutally honest about how I feel mentally, spiritually and emotionally.
Truthfully, this season of my life has been a bit of a weird one; I think many of you can agree to that. Covid-19 has thrown a wrench into many of our plans and it has also blurred the once clear paths that we had imagined for 2020. Many of us are left wondering what's next, or are struggling to cope with the life changes that has occurred. If we're honest with ourselves, many of us are not okay. We're drifting through this year, wondering when things will change. Some of us are running on empty, while others are completely numb to what is going on. In the midst of everything that's happening, have you ever really stopped and asked yourself, "Am I really okay?" Have you taken some time to really stop and process your feelings with God? Talk to a friend? Confide in someone you trust about how you really feel?
Can I tell you? I never understood the value in doing this because I’ve never been the sort of person to open up about how I really feel. I much preferred to keep my feelings tucked away and try to process them on my own. Naturally, I carried this same mindset into my relationship with Jesus. I would often struggle with my emotions alone, because I never felt like Jesus would understand what I was going through. So, I would walk around feeling mentally and emotionally drained, and not know what to really do about it. The more that I grew in Jesus however, He began to assure me that He understood what it was that I was walking through. He understood how I felt and He wanted me to feel free enough to express my feelings to Him, without fear or hesitation. Hebrews 4:15 (NIV) tells us, “For we do not have a high priest who is unable to empathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are--yet he did not sin”. Jesus is able to empathize with us because while He is God, He was also human (John 1:14). He felt human emotions. Jesus understands when we feel tired, because he’s felt tired before (John 4:6), He knows what it’s like to feel rejection (John 7:5; John 13:21; Matthew 13:57). I can go on and on about different human emotions, but the point is that He understands how we feel.
Just this morning, I had to remind myself that Jesus wouldn’t condemn me for feeling emotionally tired due to everything that’s going on in the world right now. I had to remind myself that He understood, so I confided in Him about how I was feeling. I told Him everything, right down to the doubts that I’ve been having about my future. Do you want to know what happened after I did that? I felt lighter. I felt assured that everything would be alright, because I laid everything at Jesus’ feet. I'm sharing all of this with you so that you may be encouraged to really ask yourself, “How am I, really?” and be open to sharing your feelings with Jesus. I can’t tell you how much doing this has changed my life. I no longer walk around carrying weights that I was never intended to carry, because I know that my Saviour understands, and He wants me to bring all of my cares to Him (1 Peter 5:7). I pray that you are inspired to do the same. You don’t have to be afraid to be honest with Jesus about how you feel. If you’re tired, tell Him. If you’re frustrated, tell Him. If you’re wrestling with doubt, tell Him. It doesn’t matter what you may be struggling with. Take it to Jesus and He will give you the grace and the strength to overcome.