I’m Back

It’s Sunday evening.

Nine months have passed since I’ve last posted.

I’m writing this post as I sit and enjoy a honey crueller donut from Tim Horton’s.

I drove to the store in my pyjamas with disheveled hair specifically to buy 6 donuts. I have no plans to share them with anyone. It almost sounds like a spontaneous, impulsive decision.

It wasn’t.

I thought it out. Planned it out. I weighed out the pros and cons and decided.

You see, 2019 was a difficult year for me. As a matter of fact, I’d say it was probably the hardest year I have ever endured. Strangely enough, it’s not due to any major event. It was the hardest simply because the pressures never let up. Ok, it doesn’t sound like the two thoughts are connected, but they are.

Let me back up here for a moment.

I’ve been refined sugar free since May 15, 2011. Most of that time was spent attempting to gain some self-control in my life. What I didn’t realize was that, although it was a decision that propelled me into a physically healthy place, it was also an extreme decision. When I reflect on my life, I realize that a vast majority of my decisions are extremes. I’ve always felt some sort of comfort in those extremes. Yet, over the last year, I have come to a place where I’m attempting to live my everyday life in balance – for the sake of my mental health.

Ok, back to 2019 where many people are talking about anxiety and mental health. Rightfully so, and it’s something that’s been weighing heavy on my heart.

As a pastor and leader within the church, people often think that you’re exempt from feeling the effects of the stresses of this world. That’s simply not true. The enemy knows our weakest points. He will work at nothing to knock you – and me out of the race. If he can’t get you with one thing, he’ll try the next – and so on, and so on. Philippians 3:14 says it plainly.

I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us.

Even though the pressures in my life have only increased, I press on to reach the end of the race. I know God’s grace is sufficient. Lately, I’ve found that grace with the simple act of implementing balance. That means sometimes I have to say ‘no’ to preaching because it’s not healthy to leave my kids to their own devices for four days straight. Sometimes that means I miss training at the gym so I can work on my business before my family gets home. Other times that means going to the mall in sweats and no makeup because my daughter wants to spend time with me. It also means filling my spiritual tank before I attempt to pour into someone else’s life.

I started blogging so that I could have something that was mine simply because I enjoyed it. It gave me time to recharge with a hobby instead of filling all of my free time with obligations. My first post was 2 years ago today. Since then I have dabbled with digital art, painting, writing a novel and singing. This season of balance is helping me realize that it’s ok if I enjoy makeup or working out, crushing virtual candies or potentially trying to eat 6 donuts. *update – I couldn’t do it.* These hobbies won’t keep me from fulfilling God’s purposes – unless I’m extreme with them.

Our fight is not with mere humans, but the evil forces that are at work under the surface. The enemy has been out to steal my purpose and I’m not ok with it. I mean, the enemy went straight for the jugular in the life of my purpose. One by one, I had my heart’s passions and desires shredded to pieces. I’ve had to revisit where I’m going in life, what gifts and talents I have, what I’m meant for. For now, I’m still in that process. However, I will not judge my value based on what others have projected on me – good or bad. I know my value comes from the Lord. Even amidst all the chaos, one thing I know for sure – I only ever want to be in the centre of God’s Will.

I am so beyond grateful for every encouraging word anyone has ever spoken to me over the course of the last year. In a season where many words and actions have cut me deeply, those sweet encouragements have been a treasure I’ve held on to.

If there’s one thing I can leave you with that has helped me in some dark moments, it’s an old hymn sung by Lauren Daigle, Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus.