Sandy dirt with scattered stones surrounded me up to the lower part of my neck. I looked out in front of me and my gaze fell upon the brown, smooth sand with fist sized rocks around me that were just below my eye level. To my right stood a man with His out stretched hand towards me and He simply said, “Follow me.” Being buried in the sandy dirt with only my head showing, it never occurred to me that I was unable to place my hand in His and follow Him as I slowly moved free to join His reach.
What I was doing was carrying burdens, my rocks if you will, that were taking a toll and weighing heavily on me. I recalled an exercise I had performed just months prior of where I wrote down on rocks (very symbolic) the cares, worries, burdens, and even negative self-chatter that had accumulated in my life.
One of those rocks of shame I accidentally left behind (how nice it is when we forget the burdens we had been caring) and the other rock of self-hate, I literally went and threw into a pond. But here I was again with rocks of self-doubt, self-hatred, feeling unrighteous, ugly, and the list continuous.
Why did I pick up those rocks again?
The battlefield is my own mind. More often than not, I am my own worst enemy. There have been far too many times that those boxing gloves have turned into sharp, jagged stones of cutting self-hatred that were slowly destroying and killing me. It has taken me my whole life to learn that God didn’t create me for self-destruction. He formed and fashioned me before I even took my first breath (Ps 139:13).
He has created me for such a time as this (Esther 4:14). I don’t want to waste this life, this precious gift of life, by casting stones of defeat at myself. I want to trade in those heavy, jagged rocks of hopelessness for hope. I desire to fulfill the purpose and plan that He has for me. He has called me to pick up my cross and follow Him, and I choose to do just that, as I lay my burdens down.
What stones are you carrying around? Are you willing to release them to God?
Jana Smith has learned that keeping your focus on God can change your perspective in any situation. She has come to know that God is a loving Father, who desires an intimate relationship with each of His children. She believes that knowing your true identity in Christ coupled with freedom, can lead to a powerful revelation of who you are as a warrior in the Kingdom. Jana serves as leader at j2i ministries.