Disclaimer: I’ll go ahead and admit off top that this blog may not be well constructed. Inspired by a scripture that I couldn’t shake and a series of “Aha” moments, I am just going to type my jumbled thoughts on the page and pray that they make sense to you like they do to me. Here goes.
If you have been keeping up with my life via According to Chris, you have seen me go through a bit of a metamorphosis over the last 6-7 months. It was last June that I started blogging again consistently. By the top of July, my posts became less and less generic, and they really started to reveal the thoughts, struggles, and efforts behind the well constructed “Christen Rouson Mask.” Here’s my truth: I didn’t want to be as transparent as I have been with you all. Don’t get me wrong, I believe sharing absolutely helps me and others overcome, but According to Chris has now shifted out of my comfort zone. To really know me is to know that I am a very private person, and anything that I share is calculated. I have already sifted through the details of my life and hand picked what I want to reveal prior to posting or speaking. Doing so lets me remain in control. Oh, but God is such the comedian. He saw my methodical, controlled, neatly constructed testimony and raised the stakes. He has made me be TRANSPARENT and trust Him with the limits. I have literally been exposed, healing, and transforming right before your eyes. It is so uncomfortable. (I’ll blog more about that later.)
With regard to my metamorphosis, I can genuinely say that I’m not the woman that I was in July. I found a way to forgive people and situations that I truthfully didn’t think I could. I have been completely honest concerning my feelings of disappointment, betrayal, jealousy, and vulnerability. I’ve have found the strength to hang on in there when everything in me wanted to quit…ON LIFE! I have embraced that God wants to do more than one thing in and through me, and I am not limited to only the talents that I can see or am comfortable with. I’ve put a smile on my face and worked my job day in and day out even when I couldn’t buy a “thank you.” I have found a reason and a way to live even when it felt easier to merely exist or, even worse, die.
So today, I’m in a better place. I’m working to improve my life, health, and finances. I am striving to move beyond who I was and become who God wants me to be.
Here’s the question: What’s the point?
“For everything comes from him and exists by his power and is intended for his glory. All glory to him forever! Amen.”
Romans 11:36 [New Living Translation]
I have been literally sitting with this scripture for about the last two or three weeks.
The scripture is basically showing us that God is at the core of everything. I’ll make this specific to me since my many epiphanies occurred in that manner. God is at the core of my life and existence, and it only continues because of His power. My gifts and talents, tenacity, intelligence, resourcefulness, and even my provision and finances are because of Him. Furthermore, everything I do, say, give, and am is intended to give glory to God. In finding my purpose in life after asking, “Why am I here?” I discovered that my purpose ultimately is intended to glorify God. Example: I believe it is my purpose to empower people to become their best selves by bringing them into the awareness of how God can help them by revealing how He helped me. There are many ways that I can execute that purpose: blogging, writing books, public speaking with groups, one-on-one mentorship, leading praise and worship, using what I know to develop others to become leaders, etc. Regardless of the method of execution, all that I do should bring glory to God.
So back to this metamorphosis. I forgave that loved one who hurt me when I wasn’t the intended target. I allowed an ex, who I swore I’d never speak to again, have a chance to apologize and make things right; I forgave the guy who betrayed me; I prayed for the very ones who sought to discourage me; and the list goes on. You know what all of these things have in common? They gave glory to God. *insert chuckle* And here I am thinking that I only glorify God when I sing His praises, am nice to my friends and neighbors, or help someone in need. “For EVERYTHING comes from him and exists by his power and is intended for his glory.”
(Hopefully I haven’t lost you along the way.) The good, the bad, the ugly, and the indifferent factors of your life have a point. I personally believe nothing is by happenstance but everything has reason and meaning. Even if the cards that you have been dealt aren’t in God’s perfect will, He still has the intention to receive glory from how you play that hand. This is a part of His permissive will.
According to Chris…
Aha moment #1: Relying on God, regardless of your state of being, allows Him receive glory.
God can use your divorce, miscarriage, new promotion, rejection letter, business venture, relationship status, gifts, and even failures to receive glory. It’s all in how we live through those moments. I’ll admit that my heart wasn’t in the best condition as I declared my hatred for someone while praying to God for the strength to forgive. But it was when I sought God to lay aside my pride, gave God my pain, and put faith to my process that God was able to perform and ultimately receive glory. I’ll admit that being saved and single hasn’t been the easiest task. Too many times I wanted to just float back into a situationship so that I wouldn’t have to be alone. But when I resolved that waiting for whoever/whatever God has for me is better than subjecting my mind, spirit, and body to a soul tie and bondage, God gave me a bit of comfort in my wait. In that He received glory. See where I’m going with this?
Aha moment #2: Since God is at the center of everything, we already have “built-in” power to accomplish any task.
Often times, while on my journey of forgiveness, I wondered why God kept showing me how jacked up my heart was as if He was disappointed in me. I didn’t understand why He kept pressuring me to heal, let it go, and forgive for real. Why wouldn’t He just let me wallow in my feelings? Didn’t He know this was hard for me? On the same token, I didn’t understand why He kept making me be so transparent with you all. Why did I have to be an open book of sorts? Didn’t He know that I was uncomfortable? And another thing… I didn’t get why He kept putting a nagging persistence within me to “bust a move” (as my mamma used to say) and not only dream again but try again. Didn’t he remember how I failed the last time? And doesn’t he know my bank balance? I can’t afford these dreams He’s given me!
The reason why God will not accept your excuses for why you can’t do is because He has already given you the power to accomplish it. Because He created you and lives in you, you can do anything, live through anything, readjust from anything, overcome anything, and succeed at anything as it aligns with His will. AND tapping into the power of God that lives within you GLORIFIES GOD!
Aha moment #3: It’s not about me!
Forgiving is my responsibility as a believer. Walking by faith is my requirement as a believer. Healing is my right as a believer. No one is handing me brownie points for doing what I’m supposed to do. Who throws a party for someone when they finally go to the doctor after being sick for two weeks? I’ve never been to a “Yay! You Can Finally Get Better Now” party. There is an expectation that when you are sick, you will see a physician. Just the same, it is expected that when some offends you, you forgive them… Don’t get me wrong, there may be some praise when you accomplish a goal, make progress, or hit a new mark because people are proud of you, but YOU AREN’T SUPPOSED TO GET THE GLORY! It’s the difference in saying, “I did it,” and “It’s because of me.” No boo, it’s because of God. You did not pull yourself up by your own boot straps. “For EVERYTHING comes from him and exists by his power and is intended for his glory.”
Today I challenge you, as I challenge myself, to take a good look at your life. Examine your history, who you are today, who you believe you are supposed to become, what you have (finances, resources, relationships, etc.), that in which you’ve been assigned to do, and the things you’re seemingly stuck with. Then ask yourself, “When I trace the line back to the core, is God there, and is He being glorified?” If you can’t assuredly say “yes,” you make need to make some adjustments. Maybe some portions of your life are just a step or 10 outside of the will of God. Just the same, if God is at the core and you are not walking in the authority and strength that He has given you, you may need to make another set of adjustments. Why live life with a random set of circumstances and outcomes when you have the all-sufficient one living inside of you? And what’s the point of surviving the greatest and lowest moments of your life without it glorifying God? What’s the point?
My heart’s song…
“From my heart to the heavens, Jesus be the center. It’s all about you. Yes, it’s all about you…”
I’m sorry that it was a bit broken.
I hope this helps.